Posts Tagged With: Georgetown

RV Breakin Part 2

Broken window

Broken window

Our baby is sitting at the dealer now. Here’s whats happened since the last article about the break-in.

We called the dealer the afternoon before we were set to leave the RV Park at Lake Elsinore. We talked to the service rep. He seemed to be very anxious to help, and told us we could bring the coach over the next afternoon.

Packing up and leaving the RV Park the next morning went very smoothly, and we were out of there about half an hour earlier than I expected. First stop was our RV Storage lot. We had to unload the coach before taking it to the dealer. This included the cat….he was much easier to get into his carrier this time than he was the first time. Once we had everything that needed to come home loaded into our Honda Accord, we were on our way to the dealership. It is about 4 miles to the east.

I pulled up into the staging area next to the service counter and walked in. Our service rep was ready to take care of me, even though I was about an hour earlier than I told him I would be. “Earlier is better,” he said with a smile.

We walked out to the coach. He took the usual info – mileage, license plate, and so on. He took a look at the window and the torn screen. As I expected, he said that they would have to order a new window assembly from Forest River. He thought it would take a couple of weeks to get the part and get it installed.

I’m also having a couple of warranty issues taken care of….a leaky black water tank valve, and a stuck water filter housing. Both are minor, and the service rep thought they would be quick and easy to take care of.

The service rep tried to sell me a couple of things. One was some suspension stiffening springs that they have “on special” for about $2500, and the other was a solar system that they had on sale for $1050. I am interested in the solar, but don’t want to spend the money on that yet. I think the coach handles fine, even without the “Cheap Handling Fix”, so I have no desire to drop over two grand on the suspension fix.

After signing several copies of the paperwork, one set for the break-in repair and one set of the warranty work, we were done.

My insurance guy called the dealership as promised the next morning, and got things set up. The bad news is that the deductible on the insurance is $500…..and the cost of the repair probably won’t be much more than that.

So, what’s next? We have the storage yard to deal with.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

It’s obvious that security at the yard is not what it was advertised to be. There were no cameras that covered the back bay area where the 19 coaches got broken into. They advertise a security person “in residence”. That person was not at the yard at all for the entire night…..the only thing that stopped the burglars was a fellow customer who arrived at around 3:00am to drop off his truck. He saw the people there and chased them away.

We got a letter and e-mail from the owners of the storage yard, telling us about the improvements they’ve made, and what they plan to do to make things right.

The improvements they made were minor. They put re bar over a drainage hole in the fence, down at ground level. That is a small opening. I doubt if that is how the burglars came in. The other thing they said they would do is add a new security camera system. I’ll see if that’s there when I show up at the yard after our coach is finished at the dealership.

What are they offering to do to make things right? They are giving us one month at half price. LOL. So we get half of $119 bucks. I’m going after them for the entire $500 deductible, and I know for a fact that other tenants are doing the same….we talked about it when we were there talking to the Sheriff’s Department the morning after the event.

If these guys balk at paying us for our damages, we will have to find another storage yard.

We’ll see what happens.

 

 

 

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Lake Elsinore – RV Trip #3

Lake Park RV Resort - Lake Elsinore, CA

Lake Park RV Resort – Lake Elsinore, CA

I’m sitting on the couch in Redondo Beach, tired but happy. Laura and I just got through our third RV trip. This was another learning and shakedown trip. It was our longest to date – four days. I wish it could have been longer.

We tried out a couple of new facets of the RV lifestyle.

First, we decided to take our cat with us, as I mentioned in the last article. The Cat’s First Camping Trip

And second, we tried out our new membership in Passport America to get our nightly cost down to something a little more affordable.

This was not a “destination” trip, meaning that we didn’t go to a place that had lots of great sights and activities. We went instead to a Passport America park that had reasonable rates and was not unbearably hot in June.

The place we chose was Lake Park RV Resort and Lodge, which was one of two places that Passport America had listed on Lake Elsinore. We got two of our four nights for half price. The entire four nights cost just $105.

Lake Elsinore

Lake Elsinore

 

About the Lake

Lake Elsinore is in the Inland Empire, close to Temecula. It is the largest natural lake in Southern California. What does “natural” mean? Not man made. We didn’t build a dam and let water back up here. Lake Elsinore is in a natural basin. Water flows in from the San Jacinto River. Some work has been done over the years to keep the level of the lake stable via an outflow mechanism, but it basically remains a natural lake today.

My only prior experience at this lake was as a child, on an early boating trip with my family. I remember two things about this trip. Yards and yards of mud along the shore, and a mishap at the launching ramp that could have been a disaster. I don’t know what caused all the mud to be there, and there was no mud on this trip. The launching ramp incident was scary. My Mom was backing the boat down the launching ramp when the brakes in our ’64 Chrysler Newport gave out. The emergency brake was the only thing that stopped our car from rolling all the way into the water.

Old days of family boating. Not sure if this is Lake Elsinore or Lake San Antonio

Old days of family boating. Not sure if this is Lake Elsinore or Lake San Antonio

I remember reading about Lake Elsinore as a Jr High kid, mainly because of the famous dirt bike race that was held there from the mid 60s to the mid 70s. This race drew famous participants like Steve McQueen and Malcolm Smith. Honda named it’s first line of competition dirt bikes after this race….The CR250M Elsinore. In the mid-70s, violent outlaw bikers stared showing up to this event, causing so many problems that the City of Lake Elsinore had no choice but to shut it down. The event was brought back in 1996 and continues today, on a provisional basis.

Steve McQueen racing in the Lake Elsinore Grand Prix

About the RV Park

The campground turned out to be nice, but I would not call it a “Resort”. It’s a pretty large facility, and it does have some nice features.

There were the usual full hookup facilities for RVs on wide gravel spaces, with a mixture of 50 amp and 30 amp outlets that appeared to be randomly placed. There was sewer, water, and cable TV. Note long term “full timer” stuff next to us….storage lockers/sheds.

Hookups

Hookups

The Olympic sized swimming pool was nice. We used it a couple of times.

Swimming Pool

Swimming Pool

There are BBQ facilities by the pool with a large gazebo and tables. With all of the trees, it was fairly cool in here even during the heat of the day.

Gazebo and BBQ facilities by the pool.

Gazebo and BBQ facilities by the pool.

Two gazebos are next to the lake with tables and BBQs. This is a charming feature, but I didn’t see anybody using them. There was work being done in this area….note the bulldozer. They are spreading gravel on a large flat area towards the rear of this photo. Apparently this new area will be for RVs, but with no hookups.

Gazebo

Gazebo

There is a large grassy area across the road from the Pool, with rental “cabins” to the right.

Large grassy area. Cabins are off to right of picture.

Large grassy area. Cabins are off to right of picture. Note businesses across the Hwy. One is a Mini Mart.

Our dog enjoyed the grassy area.

Izzy on the grass, enjoying the sights, sounds, and smells.

Izzy on the grass, enjoying the sights, sounds, and smells.

The best spaces in the park overlook the lake, but all of those spaces contain park model trailers. Park models appear to be short single wide mobile homes. You can see one of them in the background of this shot.

Park Models can be seen facing Gazebos by the lake shore

Park Models can be seen facing Gazebos by the lake shore

It’s between 300 and 400 yards of walking to get from the regular RV area we were in to the lakeside.

There is no sandy beach……it’s basically dried dirt with rocks. Branches stick out of the water.

No beach....dried mud with bushes sticking out of the water. Wouldn't swim here.

No beach….dried mud with bushes sticking out of the water. Wouldn’t swim here.

Next to the Lake Park is a launching ramp and parking lot belonging to another facility. It was busy on Sunday but deserted during the week days.

Launching ramp next door

Launching ramp next door

This facility has many full time residents. I saw a lot of Class A motor homes and 5th Wheel trailers that didn’t look like they had been moved for many months. There was a bus conversion next to us, which had flat rear tires and bricks around the edges.

There are three main “streets” that have RV spaces on either side. Here is a typical view. There were quite a few open spaces available.

Looking down one of the streets. Many long term guests here.

Looking down one of the streets. Many long term guests here. At the end of the road you can see the “Motel” rooms.

I would say there were 30-40 RVs at the park while we were there, but only about 10 of these appeared to be short term guests.

The spaces here are very good sized, with ample room to park a TOAD, leaving plenty of outside space to sit with a group of people. No fires are allowed in the spaces, though.

Large space

Large space – the tree marks the back of the space. I’m shooting the picture from an empty space that opens onto one of the other three streets.

The lake itself was larger than I expected. The water is like I remembered it from my earlier trip….brownish green. It looks a little muddy. I had planned to so some fishing, but never got around to it.

Another view of the lake. It's pretty large. Lots of room for boating

Another view of the lake. It’s pretty large. Lots of room for boating

Free wireless internet was available, and worked well most of the time. There were a couple of short periods where we couldn’t connect, but speed was good enough to upload pictures for the last article on this blog.

The people here are friendly. Almost everybody waves to you as they walk by, and we had a couple of short conversations with fellow dog walkers (dogs are such a great ice breaker).

This was the first trip where the coach was situated at the right angle to use the awning. This provided shade in the middle of the day….mid morning to early afternoon. From about 3:00 to about 5:00 the shade goes away, and the sun is too hot to be outside. After 5:00 it got really nice, because one of the many trees in the park shaded most of the passenger side of our coach. This was perfect….sitting outside in the gentle breeze, having some beer and listening to music. Very relaxing.

It's Post Time!

It’s Post Time!

The experiment with our cat Milhouse was a success. He was nervous at first, but by the end of the second day, he was into the swing of things. He liked sitting in the bedroom, on the little counter that has a window, watching the world go by. We will take him on our future trips.

Milhouse by the bedroom window

Milhouse by the bedroom window

We put the cat box in the shower, with a white plastic trash bag under it to insure no litter gets into the grey tank. It worked out really well, but you have to keep it scooped out all the time! The quarters are too close for a smelly cat box.

Cat box. These high sided boxes work really well.

Cat box. These high sided boxes work really well.

Laura and I spent a lot of time on writing projects during this trip, as we have on our other trips. I spent much of my time editing the first draft of a novel. Laura was working on writing exercises and blog posts. This is one of the things I like best about RVing so far. Being able to write in various locations is very appealing to me, and has been working out well so far.

Overall, I’m pleased with this trip, and would visit this RV Park again. It had a nice laid-back vibe. There wasn’t any loud partying going on, and the people were nice. Facilities were good. There are a couple of mini-markets and an ice cream place that are walking distance from the park, but they are across Hwy 74 (the Ortega Hwy), so you have to be careful crossing. There is a Jack in the Box next to the park that doesn’t require crossing the Hwy, which is nice.

Our coach is now at the dealer’s service department. We are getting the damage repaired that happened during the recent break-ins at our storage facility. We are also getting a couple of warranty fixes done. Our black tank drain valve is leaking a little bit, and the housing for our water filter is stuck so tight that I can’t get it off. So Curious George will be laid up for a couple of weeks.

Can’t wait to get her back, and go on another adventure!

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Summer has come to South Bay

1970 to 1971

Summer is here. Well, not really. Summer officially starts on June 21st, and we are still in late May.

But facts be damned, it is summer to me. Summer has a gateway, a mid point, and an end. We are in the gateway right now – Memorial Day Weekend. I don’t need to say what the midpoint and end of Summer are….you all get it.

I won’t go into what Memorial Day means to the country on a macro level. Everybody is putting reminders out there of the real reason for the holiday. I agree and remember and am grateful, but I’m going to write about what the holiday and summer means to me, a civilian who was never in the military.

I grew up on the coast of Southern California, in an area known as South Bay. The name is supposed to denote that you are within a few miles of the southern part of Santa Monica Bay. I’ve lived in four different cities that are part of South Bay…..but there has been no open land between them since long before I was born, so it all seems like different sections of the same city to me. Some people still call this area a suburb. I’ve lived in an area that is really a suburb, forty miles north-east of here. That has a completely different feel. It’s a bedroom community for most of the people that live there, because work is many miles away. Mile after mile of open land surrounds three sides. It’s on the edge of the LA Megatropolis. That is a suburb. South Bay is not that.

South Bay has dense population, decent rapid transit (for the LA Area, that is), and all of the facilities that one would find in a major city. Work is usually within a few short miles. Not counting the ocean, there is no wilderness just a couple miles away. This is a nice area to live in because of the climate. Most people know that California is one of the handful of places in the world that has a Mediterranean climate. South Bay and some other small coastal sections of California have even milder weather than the rest of California.

What does that mean? South Bay is often room temperature outside, with very low humidity. And while there is some difference between Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall, these differences are largely muted along the coast.

The point of this ramble…lack of distinct differences in weather here has driven a lot of people to mark the summer by it’s big weekends. But that isn’t all. Memorial Day and Labor Day are usually the portals marking the end of one school year and the beginning of the next. That’s probably even more important for me personally.

I was extremely lucky growing up. My parents made sure that we did a lot of camping. We started this in about 1965-66, with Car Camping. Earliest trips were to Kern River and Lake San Antonio.

While at Lake San Antonio, we had our first experiences with fishing. Bass fishing from shore. Lake San Antonio was a brand new lake at the time. I don’t know if it was really heavily stocked early on, or what, but you could cast out plastic worms from shore and catch decent sized bass very easily. We spent many an hour at the Harris Creek section of that lake.

We saw that people with boats seemed to be catching even more fish, so on one of those early vacations at Lake San Antonio, we rented a pontoon boat. The day was largely a fiasco, because the outboard motor gave out. Before that happened, we had a great time. We pulled up next to the abundant brush that was really submerged trees and caught fish.

Within a year of that event, Mom and Dad bit the bullet and bought a used boat. It was a mid-60s 16 foot Glaspar Tri Hull, with a new 65 HP Mercury outboard. We learned how to fish from that boat, and we also took up water skiing. Almost every time the Torrance schools had a long weekend, we were gone. In the earliest days, we were even out during part of the Christmas week, and always out during Easter week. But the real prime time was summer, and Memorial Day Weekend was the start of that.

The family camping went on for years, even after I had married and left home in 1976. We graduated from campground camping, where you launch and retrieve your boat each day, to true boat camping at the Colorado River and it’s lakes. We would load the boat with camping gear, and find a nice cove to call our own for a week or two. That was my favorite type of camping.

There were pitfalls along the way.

Early in our boating time, my parents paid for a slip at Lake San Antonio. Launching and pulling in the boat every day was a chore. Having the boat in a slip was nice…we could just carry stuff down there, jump in, fire up the engine, and back away. During the night, somebody came to our boat, stole the Merc Outboard, and then pulled the drain plug. Most crooks are stupid. These crooks forgot to untie the boat. It didn’t sink all the way. Insurance covered everything, and we were back out before we even ran out of vacation time. We didn’t go all the way up to Lake San Antonio again, though. We went to nearby Lake Piru instead, and had one of the best fishing trips ever. There were a couple of days that we came in with limits of large-mouth bass for all five of the family. Cleaning 25 fish took a while. We were eating bass for weeks. Bass fried with Bisquick, and hash browns. Mmmmmm.

Another pitfall happened in about 1970. We were getting ready to go on a two week trip to one of the Colorado River lakes – probably Lake Mead. On the evening before we were to leave, my dad was moving a bunch of stuff around, getting ready. He started to have chest pains. Mom took him to the hospital. He checked out OK, and the hospital said he could go home. My dad knew that something was wrong, and said he wanted to stay overnight. Mom went home. The next morning, she came to pick him up, and found out that he had a massive heart attack, and was in ICU, barely alive. He was only forty years old. He spent three weeks in ICU, and then another three months in the hospital. I’ve often thought about what would have happened had he not had the attach that night. He might have had a heart attack while camped on a remote shore at Lake Mead. If that had happened, he would probably be gone now. Instead, he is still alive in his late 80s.

I remember thinking that the heart attack would stop my parents from the camping. If anything, they doubled down. We got a new boat in about 1971 – a Tri Sonic. It had a 110 HP Merc engine, and thus was a lot faster than the old boat – just perfect for us kids who were getting better at water skiing. My brother and sister and I would often be allowed to take friends on the camping trips. My parents were very generous with that.

I missed out on some of the mid-1970s trips. I was working part time by then, and could be left at home to fend for myself at that point. I was also at the age where my friends were more interesting to me than my family (everybody goes through that). I got married in 1976, and after that, my wife and I started going on the camping trips. It was great fun again. One trip that sticks out in my mind was a houseboat trip we took at Lake Powell, in spring 1981. That trip was the last time that I spent quality time with my brother Lew. He was killed in December, 1981 by a shark. That happened when he was surfing up in Monterey. I cherish the memory of that houseboat trip.

Eventually my parents got a little too old for the rugged camping we had done all those years, so they bought a house in Bullhead City. They also bought a new boat – a nice Sea Ray with an I/O V-8 engine that would go over 50 mph. By that time my wife and I had several kids. We went out to Bullhead for vacation a couple times a year, but not as much as I would have liked. There were various reasons for that. I wish we could have been out there more.

During most the time that my parents had the Bullhead City house, my wife and I were living in the suburb that I mentioned earlier. There were several lakes in our general area….Lake Piru, Lake Castaic, and Lake Pyramid. We were prosperous enough to have some extra spending money, so we bought our own boat….a Bayliner Classic 19. We had a lot of fun with that boat, but ran into problems too. The biggest problem was over-crowding at the local lakes. Some days, if you weren’t there far enough ahead of the sunshine, you weren’t getting on the water. That’s tough when you have four kids, the youngest being twins under 5 years old. We ended up using the boat more at Lake Mohave, by the Bullhead City house, than we ever used it locally.

Boating is a chapter of my life that appears to be over at this point. I’m older now, and I have the urge to wander the land, so Laura and I are embarking on adventures in our Georgetown 328. I know that I’ll have a longing to be out on the water when we are camping at lakes. Such is life. One expensive toy is enough at this point.

We are in the planning stages for our next RV trip now, and it is going to be at a lake. I’ll fish from shore and watch the boats and lounge around in the water and enjoy it as much as I did in earlier days. And I’ll remember camping trips from days gone by fondly.

It’s summer.

 

 

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Dockweiler State Beach…..RV Trip #2

 

Dockweiler from the sand.

Dockweiler from the sand.

Our second trip is over, and I’m sitting here in my condo only about 7 miles away from the Dockweiler RV Park, wishing it was still going.

To get back into it, I would have to drive 66 miles inland to pick up our coach from the storage yard, and then drive about 70 miles in the coach to get back to Dockweiler. Compared to a 300 mile driving day, it’s not too bad, but it’s still more than a hop, skip, and jump. Guess I’ll just have to stay home for now.

Dockweiler has some features that are hard to love.

It’s very close to LAX, and depending on wind patterns and the time of day, you might have noisy jets taking off right over your heads every few minutes. It can get loud enough to stop conversation.

You can just see the jet taking off from LAX in the upper left hand corner of the picture

You can just see the jet taking off from LAX – middle left.

 

Across the road, and visible from the RV Park, is Hyperion – LA’s oldest and largest sewage treatment plant.

Hyperion Sewage Treatment Plant

Hyperion Sewage Treatment Plant

 

Off shore, oil tankers tie up and connect to pipes that take crude oil into the Standard Oil Refinery, which is a mile or so south.

Tanker sitting offshore, off loading crude to the Standard Oil Refinery

Tanker sitting offshore, off loading crude to the Standard Oil Refinery

Cost is high – $65 per night for the row closest to the sand, $60 per night for the middle row, and $55 per night for the back row.

The park isn’t lushly landscaped and attractive, either. At first glance, the park just looks like a parking lot with hookups. It is long and skinny, with three rows of spaces. It’s not a tiny park….there are 118 spaces.

 

You can see the three rows of spaces here. It goes pretty far back....118 spaces.

You can see the three rows of spaces here. It goes pretty far back….118 spaces.

This is a very popular park, especially in the summer. It fills up fast. Reservations are required. Why is that, with all of the problems?

Most of the bad features don’t actually impact you much. There is a breeze that normally blows from the ocean onto the shore. This usually insures that the smells from Hyperion, LAX, and Standard Oil don’t hang around in the RV park. The smells generally blow inland. You get nice clean ocean air.

The airplane noise can be bad, but it comes and goes, and after a while I don’t notice it very much. Laura doesn’t agree with me on this…..she thinks the noise is a really big problem.

The best part about this location is the bike path. Its about five steps from the first row of spaces at the park, separated by a low fence with openings about every 15 feet or so. This bike path is the famous “Strand”, which runs through Torrance Beach, Redondo Beach, Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach, El Porto, Playa Del Rey, Venice Beach, and Santa Monica Beach. The food, drink, and entertainment selection along the Strand is ENORMOUS. World class. Almost everybody I saw at this campground had bikes in order to take advantage of this.

The Strand. You can just see a bike entering the frame on the right.

The Strand. You can just see a bike entering the frame on the right.

The beach next to the RV Park is very nice also. If you like to body surf, it’s a very nice location. It’s also a good place to fish. There never seems to be many local surfers there. The location of the RV Park helps with that. Dockweiler is a very large beach. To the north of the guard shack is day parking ($6), and the “day use” part of the beach. That is where day visitors and surfers are. To the south of the guard shack is the RV park, but there is quite a bit of open ground between the day area and the RV area. Too far to lug surfboards and other beach equipment. The beach by the RV park isn’t legally restricted to RV’ers, but the topography keeps day users on the north side of the beach.

A nearly empty beach in SoCal...rare even in April.

A nearly empty beach in SoCal…rare even in April.

The first trip that we took in the new Georgetown 328 was a shakedown, at an RV Park that was only about 4 miles from the dealership and the storage yard. It was a great trip, but there was very little driving involved. This time we had more of a drive…about 70 miles one way. The driving was almost all freeway driving….you go about a mile from the storage yard to get to I-10. Then it’s over to the 605 freeway, and finally the 105 freeway. The 105 turns into Imperial Hwy. That road literally ends at the guard shack for Dockweiler State Beach, about a mile or two after the 105 ends.

Guard shack up on the hill, on the left side of photo. Note Strand cruiser.

Guard shack up on the hill, on the left side of photo. Note Strand cruiser – if this were mid May or later, you would probably see at least 5 bikes in this shot

Our adventure started on a Thursday. Before we left the storage lot, I wanted to check and adjust the tire pressure. The sticker in the coach says that the tires should be set at 92 PSI. I checked the front tires and the rear inside tires. They were all set at 80 PSI. The rear wheels have wheel covers on them; those make it impossible to check the pressure on the outside rear tires. You have to remove the wheel covers to do that, but the little tool provided to undo the nuts that hold the wheel covers on didn’t provide enough leverage. Crap. I used my air compressor to set the front wheels to 92 PSI, and left the rears alone, not wanting to have the dual wheels set at different PSI levels.

The drive down to the beach was easy. The new rig handled great!  I-10 is an older freeway with a lot of big rig traffic, so it was the roughest ride. Even with that, I was able to drive the rig with one hand on the wheel most of the time, although due to the PSI issue on the rear wheels, I tried to keep my speed under about 60 MPH. The 605 freeway is a lot smoother than I-10, and was a breeze to drive on. The best was the 105 freeway, though. That one was built in the 1980s, and it is as smooth as silk.

Dockweiler has a lot of little rules, and one of them is that you have to pay an extra $17 bucks to go in before the 1:00pm check in time. We were in no danger of getting there early, though. I had spent more time than expected trying to deal with the tire pressure issue. There was also more traffic on the roads than expected in a couple of spots. We pulled into the park a little after 3:00 pm.  There were three rigs in line ahead of me when I pulled into the check-in processing area.

Our spot was about halfway down the first block, in the middle isle. The spaces are angled but not pull through. They are generous in size, and easy to pull in to. I was able to pull our 34 foot rig in far enough to allow our car to be parked behind it.

Already pulled into our spot.

Already pulled into our spot.

The spaces are full hookup, with 50 amp and 30 amp service, fresh water, and sewer inputs. There is a picnic table for each space, and a simple BBQ. A strip of grass about 8 feet wide separates the middle spaces from the back spaces….this is a perfect place to walk your dog, but there are also special areas for dogs with waste bag dispensers, and two dog runs, which are in the sand and only big enough for one dog at a time. There is no cable TV, and no WiFi. Cellular reception and 3G/4G/LTE worked well on AT&T.

Here's a shot of the other end of the space, with the BBQ and table.

Here’s a shot of the other end of the space, with the BBQ, table, and grass strip.

There are two bathroom/shower facilities for the RV Park, on either end, plus a public rest room to service travelers on the Strand. The RV Park facilities have a keypad entry. You get the code as part of the check-in process. The public restroom is always open, and not nearly as clean as the RV park restrooms.

Planting is pretty simple…..a few palm trees and shrubs, along with the grass. No shade trees.

Palm Trees on the grass between the middle and back rows.

Palm Trees on the grass between the middle and back rows.

After getting set up at the park, Laura and I were both pretty beat. Time to have a drink and relax. Then I spent a little time in the late afternoon trying my hand at surf fishing, but it was a tad too windy to get my bait out far enough. There was a family trying their hand at the time I was out there. Nobody was having much luck, but I’ve fished around here quite a bit over the years, and have had good luck many times in the past. The fish are there more often than not.

 

Fishing in the surf

Fishing in the surf

After a while, it was time to get back to the coach. I picked up my tackle and headed back in. The water is about 100 yards from the park at high tide.

Getting ready to head in for the evening.

Getting ready to head in for the evening.

Laura made some of her famous Melange for dinner….eggs, peppers, onions, potatoes, cheese, and sour cream, topped with a little hot sauce. Then we turned on the TV. There is good HD reception over the antenna for Channels 2 and 7, and also PBS and a few other stations. Thursday night is an ABC night for us, so using the antenna was perfect.

The next day (Friday) was busy. We came to a close RV Park for a couple of reasons. One reason was stocking…..being close to home and the stores that we frequent is helpful. We also wanted to have a small get together at the coach, to show it to the family. They all live within about ten miles of Dockweiler. The party was planned for Saturday. Friday was stocking day. We did some shopping at Walmart in Torrance, and also brought some items to the coach from home.

The weather was nice on Friday. I did some more fishing in the morning, and had better luck getting my bait out to where the fish should be. I got one good strike, but that was it. Skunked again.

Laura and I did have fun walking the dog around, and exploring the park. Here are a few pictures from our walks. You can see the clouds rolling in on some of these shots.

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Later in the day, Aaron, Jennie, and Elliot (my son, his wife, and daughter) paid us a visit, and we had a really nice time. While they were there, the wind started to pick up. About twenty minutes after they left, we got hit with a fairly heavy rainstorm that lasted the rest of the evening. The wind was strong enough to rock the coach all night, even through we had our leveling jacks down. This storm was a good test of our new rig….no leaks that we could find.

Come Saturday morning, the rain was gone, but the wind was not. It was blowing really hard…..way too hard to do any fishing, or even much walking. That was OK, because we needed to prepare for our party. The big job was getting the chili going in the crock pot.

Cutting the green peppers.

Cutting the green peppers.

Chili in the crock pot, cooking.

Chili in the crock pot, cooking.

The party was a success, even though it was too cold and windy to be outside of the coach. The family seemed to enjoy it quite a lot, and Elliot was a joy, giving plenty of attention to everybody there. We had four generations of the family all in the coach at the same time…..Great Grandparents, Grandparents, Parents, and child. Three of my four sons were there…..it was so nice to see everybody. Our dog was nervous, but she was well behaved most of the time. Laura’s friend Lani showed up too, and brought some Chocolate Wine.

After the party, Laura drove her mom and my parents home, and then we cleaned up the coach. We had a nice quiet night after that, except for some raucous partying going on here and there around the park. It was still windy and cold outside, but since there was no rain this night, people seemed to be making up for the rained-out parties of the prior night.

Sunday morning was beautiful. The wind was gone, and we had sunshine and clean air. Checkout time is noon, and we had a lot of work to get done, so it was a busy time.

Back to the wheel covers and tire pressure. I put some questions about my problem onto the Forest River Forum, Georgetown section. I got a lot of great responses. I wasn’t the only person who couldn’t get the retaining nuts loose with the special tool provided by Forest River. The suggestion was to use a breaker bar and socket with extension. I had those at home, and picked them up during one of our supply runs. That did the trick….I got the wheel covers off, and was able to check and adjust the PSI on the rear tires. Now all tires are set at 92 PSI.

We had the coach ready to go at about 11:58, and left for the long drive back to the Storage Yard. I was able to keep the speed up at 65-70 MPH during most of the trip, now that the tire pressure was correct. The increased PSI made for a harder ride, but handling was more positive. The drive went well, and it was easy to get the coach pulled back into our storage spot and buttoned up.

I think our second RV trip was a great success. The coach worked flawlessly. I keep wondering when all of the defects are going to show up. I haven’t run into anything yet that would require a trip back to the dealer for warranty service. There are a few small issues. The door is a little hard to close. Some screws on the handle were loose. I tightened those, which helped, but I think I need to adjust the door jamb to align better. I think the grey water tank valve leaks a little bit, too. When I removed the cap over the dump pipe, some grey water came out. Good thing I was wearing my rubber gloves! But that was it…..no other problems.

Can’t wait to get back out there. We are probably looking at mid-May for the next trip.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Life on the Road | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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