Archive for the ‘Indiana’ Category

Ohio River

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

Click for Cincinnati, Ohio Forecast

We moved along into Ohio for our next night’s stay.  In West Salem, OH we stayed at the Town and Country Campgrounds.  We were only staying one night, and it was raining lightly as we arrived, so we didn’t do much in the way of exploration.  They have several pull through sites, but, we opted for a back-in that was certain to allow us access for our TV satellite dome.  This is a very large park and has all of the amenities including a small fishing lake.

Our next stop was the Cincinnati area.  Cincinnati is located on the Ohio River at a point where Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky meet.

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We drove through Cincinnati and crossed the Ohio River to the Indiana side. We had decided on an RV site at Rising Sun, IN that was called “Little Farm on the River”  It turns out that we made the right decision.  This facility may be one of the best run and maintained RV parks that we have had the pleasure to visit.  The park is in two sections, near the road, they have a section for RV’s, the swimming pool, general store, club house, etc.  At the bottom of the hill, alongside the river were two rows of very spacious RV sites.  Ours was right on the river, near the laundry/bath house and a small pavilion with free Wi-Fi and a wonderful view of the river.

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Our view from the Little Farm on the River.(Click Photo to Enlarge)

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The barges heaping with coal and other commodities moved up the river propelled by the largest tug boats we’ve ever seen.

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Many boaters enjoyed the river.  These two boats formed their own little island.

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Apparently, several people stay by the season or the month. There weren’t that many people around, but several rigs awaited.  This shot is of about half of the lower section.  The other end of this section was mostly empty when we arrived, but filled as the weekend approached.

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We extended our stay here for about 4 days to allow Rick to visit the Chiropractor over several days. Between doctor visits, we occupied ourselves by visiting the many casinos in the area.  Our diets were put under stress with at least 4 visits to the casino buffets.

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The area was scattered with old buildings and barns.  This one caught our fancy.

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If you think that yards decorated with pink flamingos might be a little tacky, how about a Cessna.

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We certainly enjoyed our stay in the “Tri-State” area and, if Texas hadn’t been calling, we might have liked to stay even longer.

Bringing the Montana Home

Friday, August 7th, 2009

Click for Elkhart, Indiana Forecast

While we were near Indiana, we decided to head over to the Keystone factory and get a tour of the facility where they make Montana 5th wheel, our home on wheels.

On the way, we  stopped in at a McDonalds in LaGrange, IN and found ourselves in the backyard of Dometic, the manufacturer of many RV products such as refrigerators, air conditioners, toilets,etc.

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Leaving LaGrange, we spotted a number of Amish traveling in their wagons. This entire area is very heavily populated with the Amish.

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When we arrived at the Keystone RV plant, which is actually in Goshen, IN., we pulled into the driveway and found our way to the delightful Brittany in customer service.  We made arrangements with her to stay in one of their four visitor RV sites.  Brittany also arranged for Denise, a customer service technician, to visit us in our rig, the next morning, to discuss some pending service questions.

We had noticed that the tires on the Montana were demonstrating excessively wear on the inside of each tire.  Denise set us up for an immediate appointment with a local dealer, Tiara RV, to have our alignment checked.  It turned out that all of our springs were flattened, We’re not sure whether it has been from overweight or from rough roads.  Perhaps having the “G” rated tires has added some excessive stiffness to the system.  For most of our travels, we have had a generator hanging off the back of the rig.  Perhaps that played a role. We’re not sure.

Even though we are full time, we’re not excessively loaded.  We don’t collect rocks or anything and we have removed the generator and left it in Texas.

The people at Tiara RV are great as they set us up for the night at their place so they could start our spring replacement in the morning.   Unfortunately, the axle folks don’t supply a heavier duty spring for our application, so they went with an original replacement.  They ordered the parts and promised to have us on our way by  noon the next day for a mere $950.00.

Unfortunately we missed the plant tour at Keystone because of this, but we thought that the repair was more important.

The next morning, while we waited, we had breakfast at Cracker Barrel.   While wandering around, we spotted a place called The Dually Depot and decided to stop and have an alignment performed on our dually truck.  These folks have a large business and cater to all of the people who haul the trailers to the dealers and are real professionals.

Have you ever heard this?  “Sorry, we can’t align it because your ball joints are bad.”  Well, $1,035.00 and 5 hours later, we were on our way back to pick up the 5th wheel and we finally got on the road by 6:00 PM.

We had to make up a day because we had firm reservations in Connecticut that we needed to make.  By 10:30 PM, we had knocked off about 250 miles and stopped at one of the wonderful rest areas along the Ohio Turnpike.  We pulled in, fueled up and found one of the “Handicapped” truck parking spot which allowed for space enough to send out our bed slide-out.  We spent the night there and hit the road again about 9:00 AM and were back on schedule, at the Pocono Vacation Park, by evening.  Watch the eastbound 5% downhill grade that continues for 5 miles just before you get there.  I-80 had been very well maintained until this point, but this downhill section is extremely rough.