Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I Knew It....Change in Plans!

We have decided to head out a few days early. The weather has been so beautiful the last week and we’re afraid it might turn bad real quick. So we have decided to wrap things up and get on the road.
2011-09    Fall Colors on Stockade Lake
We go on our walk out in the Park every morning for about an hour and Ms. Pat took this picture on her phone of the colors.  Although it's beautiful, it's telling us it's time to pack up and get on our way. We have played this game before. It's easy to stay a little too long, as it can turn nasty in a heartbeat. Of course, I admit we both love to travel so much, we always get a bit anxious to continue the life we have enjoyed so much for the last 16 years.
We plan on leaving Saturday morning. That is, of course, unless we just happen to be ready to go Friday. :-) If we do, maybe we'll leave Friday afternoon and get a few miles under our belt before we stop for the evening. We are loading up the Motorhome and trying to decide what to take and what to leave and today we will blow out the cabin water lines. We put “quick connectors” on the water lines, so it’s a simple job to hook an air compressor up and blow them out.  Right Rollie?? :-) Rollie and Gina were here last year when we blew everything out and he showed us how to do it.  But, that was a year ago and since our memory is not so good, he took time out of his busy schedule to write us "step by step" instructions on how to do it this year.  Thanks, Son!  That makes it a lot easier for us.

Sunday morning we should be on the road somewhere headed first to Lincoln, Nebraska to spend a few days with Ann, Scott's wife, and help her get a few things ready for Winter. So I may not get a Blog out and if I do it will be short.  Thanks for stopping by and come on back. I'll keep you posted on where we are.

It is a GREAT WEEK!!!!

God Bless you all.


This Blog is Published every Wednesday and Sunday..

Sunday, September 25, 2011

It’s Buffalo Roundup Time in the Black Hills

This weekend it’s Buffalo Roundup time in Custer State Park. Actually, the Roundup is Monday but the festivities started yesterday. (Saturday) This Roundup is getting so much publicity that more and more people come from far and near to see it every year. They are expecting crowds close to the 15,000 mark this year. Since Ms. Pat and I used to participate in the Roundup for the 9 Summers we worked out in the park, we hardly ever go out to it anymore. However if you remember last year we made an exception and took a break from working on the “Summer Cabin” and took Rollie and Gina, Mark and Dale and John and Michal Bagley all to the Roundup. We all had a great time and those are sure some fond memories.
Wranglers work to control the herd as they move toward the corral area Monday during the annual buffalo roundup at Custer State Park. The roundup allows park officials to manage the herd and cull animals for sale to keep the population around 1,000.

(Elisha Page/Argus Leader)
This is my famous picture of my friend and former boss Ron during the roundup a couple years ago. He was actually trying to turn back a group of Buffalo that broke away from the rest of the herd. I don't know if he was successful or not. I love this picture.  It made the cover of several magazines. It is special to me because Ron is using my Saddle, the one I won back in the days when I was following Rodeos for a living. Gosh, it's unbelievable that saddle is as old as it is.  Wow, as I recall that was way back in 1953 when I won it for All around Champion Cowboy. That was 58 years ago!! Holy Cow!!  I guess saddles haven’t changed much over the years and it's in better shape than I am, that’s for sure. Ron loves this saddle and rides it all the time. I am so happy for him to use it. I know it's in good hands, he's as proud of it as I am and he takes real good care of it.
Yesterday was the first day of the Arts and Crafts Festival, held right in the center of the Park. The weather was beautiful and it’s scheduled to be that way for the next few days. Ms. Pat and I decided it would be a great day for our last Motorcycle ride for this year, so about 10:00 we headed out for the Park to see what was going on in the Park and to walk around at the Arts and Crafts Festival. It's a lot of fun because we always see a lot of our old friends there that we used to work with. This celebration just gets bigger and bigger every year. I can remember when it was only a few booths. They have free entertainment all day long and every kind of arts and crafts you can imagine are displayed. 
When we left the Arts and Crafts area, we decided to take the “Wild Life Loop” on our way home. It’s a 20 mile loop of the South section of Custer State Park and the area where the Roundup is held. The above photo (taken from the road) is of the Buffalo Corrals where the Buffalo are handled. Looks like they are all set up for the BIG crowd.
Down the road a couple miles, we ran into this herd of Buffalo grazing. There was a long line of cars and we just stopped, shut off the Harley, leaned back and watched them all walk right by us. What a neat experience..
They just nonchalantly moseyed right on by us very close acting as if we didn’t exist. They are used to the vehicles and visitors taking pictures and if you don’t get them riled up, they won’t bother you.
This old gal and her calf walked right by us on the road in the left lane. They were all headed somewhere, maybe they heard there was a “Roundup” .Smile There was about 40-50 cows plus calves in the group. Little does she know that in just a few short hours she will be separated from that beautiful healthy baby of hers and he will be suddenly exposed to being on his own! But I bet she has trained him well!
Notice the colors of the trees as the leaves are just beginning to turn. What a beautiful time of the year! (click on these pictures to enlarge them)
More colors…
What a super day and what a GREAT last ride for 2011.

“Custer State Park, We Love Every inch of You”!!

It was a GREAT WEEK!!!!   We Praise the Lord and give our thanks for being blessed with this wonderful life!

God Bless you all and thanks for taking the time to stop by.


This Blog is Published every Sunday and Wednesday..

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

2 Weeks Until Departure

Only 2 more weeks and we will be leaving our favorite Summer spot. That time will fly by and be here before we know it. We still have a lot of things to get done and on the 5th of Oct we will do our final “winterization” of the cabin and head to Lincoln, Nebraska. We set up the plumbing with special air chuck fittings so it will be a simple job to blow out all the water lines. Rollie was here last year to help me blow it out.  I hope I can remember how to do it.  The memory is really suffering lately.......I don’t know what happened to it??
Several people asked if you had to crawl up on the roof of the RV each time to hook and unhook the "Awning Clamp" that I installed. Good question and I should have explained that. If you click on the picture and enlarge it, you will see a place to hook your awning rod and fasten and unfasten the clamp. A small price to pay for the peace of mind of not having to worry about the awning “unfurling” and ripping off. Hope it works!!
I had a new passenger on my 4 wheeler. I took Ms. Megabyte2 for a ride. At first she said, "No way Pops!!  I’m not getting on that thing!"  But with a little time and assurance that she would be OK and I would protect her, she agreed to take a ride. After a slow trip around the place, she got a little more comfortable, but she still wasn’t too sure about the idea.
I was surprised she stood for it at all. She rode all the way down to the mail box and back with me but when we got back she was saying…….”I don’t know Pops, it's a little scary. I think I better get off now”.  I
 really think she kinda liked it…Smile

It is a GREAT WEEK!!!!

God Bless you all.


This Blog is Published every Wednesday and Sunday,,

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Old Man Winter Is Closing In !

Thursday it didn’t get much above 40 all day long.  It was rainy, foggy and the wind was blowing. That would have to be the day we had to be in Rapid City at 9am for a doctor appointment. We were home by mid afternoon and the storm was about to move on out and by the next day it was up to a beautiful 75* with clear blue skies and sunshine. 

Ah yes.  Winter is coming and I just love these little reminders we get this time of the year that make us so thankful we can pack up and head South.   Like three mornings this week, it was in the 30’s when we got up. The new Cove Radiant Heaters sure are working great. How nice it is to turn the thermostat up and in a few minutes it's warm as toast in our new “cabin”.

Our Summer Cabin is so cozy, snug and comfortable and after spending the last 15 years in an RV full time,   we really enjoy it. I don’t care what kind of an RV you have, they just leave a little to be desired in really cold weather. I’m not complaining mind you.....I admit it's true but I wouldn’t trade all those full timing years for anything in the world, believe me! Both of us loved every minute of it!

I will say that it is easier to get ready to travel when you are living in an RV. The hard thing about having a house and moving to the RV for a long trip like we do is loading it up. What to take....and what to leave? When you are full timing you have everything you own (almost) in your RV and you just hook up and go. No decisions and you don’t forget a thing.  Believe me, I left a lot of stuff at North Ranch last Spring that I needed up here and I suppose I will do the same thing when we leave here. Meanwhile, it's decisions, decisions, decisions! However, the time to depart just keeps getting closer and closer but, as usual, I’m ready to go!! When this RV’n gets in your blood, it's hard to fight off that “hitch-itch”.

Back in June when we arrived, this is how our “proposed” kitchen looked (above). It was only blue tape marks on the was just a dream.   I wondered if it would ever become a reality.
Wednesday the Cabinet man came out and finished up the job.  I can now say it is a REALITY!!  For some reason, the lighting in the picture above makes the color of the front panel look much lighter than it really is.
Remember, we didn’t care for the wide stripes in the original hickory wood panel like those on the right above. They put the panel up on the left and asked us if we liked that better. Ah yes, we liked that much better! Something about those wide stripes seemed to “jump out” at you. I didn’t like them at all! The cabinet guys agreed and thought this would look a lot better.
Here is the final look. We are very pleased with it and it's FINISHED!!  These pictures are for you, Rollie and Gina, you made a dream come true.

So now Ms. Pat has me hanging pictures here and there and putting up towel racks and small stuff as she decorates and makes the place even more "homey".

It was a GREAT WEEK!!!!   We even found time to take a nice long Motorcycle ride up into the Deerfield area northwest of Hill City, a beautiful area that we had never explored before.

Thanks for stopping by.... hope you’ll drop back Wednesday.


This Blog is Published every Sunday and Wednesday..

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Way back from the very first RV I owned, I’ve had this love-hate relationship with awnings. On one hand, there’s nothing like sitting under the awning, sipping on your favorite beverage at Happy Hour. On the other hand, we roll up the awning on the side of our RV’s and travel down the open road praying that a side wind doesn’t inflate it and tear it off.

If you haven’t experienced an awning “unfurling” on you while traveling, you have been lucky. Most of us have experienced it or talked to someone that it has happened to.  Awning damage not only occurs to stationary RV’s with their awnings out but also to those traveling down the road. When a powerful side wind contacts the side of the RV, the air is diverted in all directions, including upward into the retracted awning and causes the "unfurling".  Awning damage is the 3RD highest Insurance claim made in the industry. We have always made sure that we do not leave our awning out when we are away from our RV, or at night and have never had that type of damage.

However, we have sure had them “unfurl” while driving down the road and it was always when we experienced a high side wind. The first time it happened was on one of our Teton 5TH wheel’s and it took the awning completely off and tossed it in the ditch.  Since then I have used several different methods of securing the awning to eliminate the problem but I never did feel comfortable with any of those methods. I know and agree the best advice is to just shut down and not travel during such winds. But that's not possible all the time.

Now this Foretravel Motorhome has Awning “locks” on the arms of each awning. This is the fix most people use and I have used it before. However, I never had complete faith in them as they are no match for the power created from strong side winds and do little to prevent unfurling or ballooning.

We found out these lock's don’t do the job when we were bringing the motorhome back to Custer from Nacogdoches, TX when we bought it last year. In Kansas, we were traveling West on the Interstate when the wind kept getting stronger and stronger and it was hitting us directly on the side with this awning. Having experienced this unfurling before, I positioned my rear view mirror so I could keep a close eye on the awning. Sure enough, soon it started ballooning as the wind gusts inflated it.

Fortunately I was able to pull into a rest area immediately. I was at the winds mercy, there was nothing I could do. So as we sat waiting for the wind to go down. I noticed  that the map showed a secondary road just a half mile ahead that I could go North on, So we eased on up to that road which turned out to be a great road and then we had a tail wind way on up into Nebraska. Solved the problem that time; however, since then I started searching for something to stop this problem.

I could find nothing that I thought would do the job.  Then some of you will remember my Blog written as we were coming up to Custer, SD this year from our place at North Ranch, AZ, we again had serious ‘unfurling” of the street side awning. We were going down I-80 headed West doing fine with a great tail wind again but then at Rawlings, WY, we had to turn North and I knew we were in trouble. The very strong wind was hitting us smack dab on the left side.  Soon again I saw the awning beginning to balloon or “unfurl”. I slowed down but that didn’t help.  So I pulled into a nice wide spot along the side of the road and we sat...and we sat...and we sat. The wind didn’t let up in the least, in fact I believe it increased even more. I didn’t want to lose that awning, so we sat it out.  Thankfully, Verizon had a strong signal way out there and with our air card, we were able to get some computer time in. I immediately set out to find the solution to this awning unfurling problem. I had to find something, this was ridiculous!
This is what I finally found and I’m hoping it is my solution to the problem. It is called RV Awning Clamp and is manufactured by RV Innovations..
It's not cheap by any means but it appears to be very sturdy and in my mind it is the only item that I feel will do the trick and still not look too terribly distractive or unattractive. I’ll let you know how it works. Now Ms. Pat and I must remember to unlatch it before we put the slide out!!! We already have a big RED warning sticker on the slide control.
*Please Note: You will notice that these clamps are not recommended for slideout awnings. Well, mine is a dual purpose awning.  It is a slideout awning and a window awning and I believe it should do the trick just fine…. (famous last words!:-)

We have broken the 200 barrier with Followers and want to welcome:
Dick is our follower number 201……Glad to have you Dick!

It is a GREAT WEEK!!!!

We are enjoying our “Cabin” more every day….thanking God for such a wonderful life and good friends.  It is truly a Blessing.


This Blog is Published every Wednesday and Sunday..

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Yes I Remember !

I remember as if it were yesterday. That day on Sept 11, 2001, we were out in the middle of a 5000 acre lake near Hot Springs, SD fishing. It was such a beautiful day, clear skies, no wind, when our phone rang. It was Terri, our daughter from Florida. She informed us what had just happened. In total shock, we put our fishing poles away and headed back home to our 5TH wheel so we could watch what was happening on TV. We will never forget…………NEVER!
I fly my Flag a lot but especially today, September11TH, in remembrance of those that lost their lives on that day. My heart goes out to the people that lost loved ones. I pray that somehow we can take our country back!

My last Blog “We Got Heat” sure raised the questions about the heaters we installed being put up near the ceiling. I put the link to “Comfort Cove Radiant Heat Systems” so anyone that was interested could check them out. But no one noticed it, so let me tell you a little bit about them. I, too, was skeptical when I saw that they were installed up near the ceiling. This comes direct from their web site:

How It Works

How It Warms Your Floor
The Comfort Cove home heater uses radiant heat, "it's heat at light speed"®. Radiant heat does not rise like hot air, instead, it heats anything in its path - up, down, or sideways - traveling in a straight line until it strikes an object. Radiant heat is unaffected by gravity, and will not fluctuate temperature. This efficient heating alternative warms floors and objects, as well as the air in a room, similar to the way the sun heats the earth. As objects in the room become warm (chairs, floors, and people), the surrounding air picks up heat by conduction and the entire room maintains a constant comfortable warmth.
People live on floors, not on ceilings
  • Air Heaters - Cold and Wasteful
  • Radiant Heat - Warm and Efficient
We learned about these heaters from the fellow that was installing our Kitchen Cabinets. He told us that he used them in several of his rental properties and his tenants loved them. He told us they are reasonably priced and extremely efficient. I went to their web site, checked them out and found that they were sold by our local power company. The Power Company endorses them highly and the local electrician that we use told us that they are a great deal and people they have installed them for love them.  In fact, Tom, the head electrician, told us they had installed ten of them that week.

They are 240 volt and take very low amperage. It was very simple to run the extra wire for ours and all 4 of the Radiant Heaters are on one 20amp circuit. We checked and with all the heaters on running full blast, they are only taking 16 amps. We have had a chance to use them with the cool mornings we are having up here in the Black Hills and we’re impressed..  It’s unbelievable how neat they work and how warm the floor gets. Sure makes walking on our new wood floors neat. Plus, since we are an “All Electric” home, the power company gives us a reduced rate!! So check them out if you have a room or two that needs some HEAT.  Their web site gives all the answers.  I hope I’ve cleared up the “Heaters up near the Ceiling” questions, if not let me know…and thanks for asking. It sure answered what to make my Blog about today! Smile

You all know how close Ms. Megabyte2 is to my heart and I am happy to report that she is doing GOOD. Thanks Charley and Sherry for asking.  She has come back almost 100% and that sure makes us happy and thankful.  She has more “homes” than any cat I know.  She conforms to each one we shuffle her into.  Here she is looking out her new "look out". I don’t think she likes it as well as she does the dash of the Motorhome but who knows.
She can also jump up on the front window sill and loves to look out from her new "perch"…..
Sometimes we play “Jail” and right now she is in Jail!Smile   She runs around the place a slippin' and a slidin' on the wood floor. I think she likes this place…
Quite often she gets to go outside...........but always under the close eye of “Mom”.
But oh my, she sure enjoys her Motorhome, too.
Ah yes!  What a wonderful place to relax and get a few rays! LOL

You can tell I love to talk about and show you pictures of my little gift from Heaven............Thank You Scooter. I love you man! 

It was a GREAT WEEK!!!

Thank you all for stopping by and God Bless. Praise the Lord for our many Blessings!


This Blog is Published every Sunday and Wednesday..

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

We got Heat!!

Our Comfort Cove Radiant Heaters have been ordered for a couple of weeks and yesterday they arrived. We knew we had to get them installed, as Sunday when we got up it was 32*.  We had the wiring for the heaters and the thermostats already done, so it didn’t take long to get them hung on the walls.
The first one in the living room is up. We put two in the living room, one in the bedroom and one small one in the bathroom.
The second one in the living room is installed.
Bathroom installed…each room has its own thermostat.
One more to go in the bedroom….
There....the Bedroom is done! That does it. Heat Installed…. Hurray!!  One more little job completed. I think we are getting to the end. Time to sit back and enjoy this great little place, that is until Ms. Pat thinks of some other little project…..:-)
We were extremely happy yesterday when Ron and JerrieLea, our good friends from Arizona, stopped to see us. Our front yard was wide open, so we talked them in to staying the night. They could only stay for one night and this morning they have to head out early, as they need to get back to Arizona to take care of some personal matters. We look forward to seeing them down there this winter. Have a safe trip folks!

It is a GREAT WEEK!!!!

Thanks for stopping by and we hope you will find time to stop back Sunday and see what we can dig up that’s exciting around here.. Until then, may the good Lord take a likin' to ya!!


This Blog is Published every Wednesday and Sunday..

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Moved into our “CABIN” at Custer..

The Escapade in Gillette,WY is now history and was a super event. This is the large Cam-Plex where most all the events were held.  It is a wonderful place to have a large rally such as this, with plenty of parking and full hookups with 50amps.
There were nearly 700 RVs in attendance and room for more. Dozens of door prizes were given away at the assemblies each night.
Ms. Pat found the Line Dancers every morning and here they are up on the stage performing at the popular "Ham-O- Rama".
This is the group that was initiated into the Elks Club at the Escapade. There were over 50 of us. Can you find me??  I’m there.  Now we can park at Elks Clubs all over the country as we travel.
We left the Escapade early Friday morning and since it was only 112 miles, by 10:00am we were home and ready for our BIG MOVE. This was the BIG day!!

We have spent the last two nights in our new place and it has been very enjoyable. Even Ms. Megabyte2 is happy.   Wow, this is what we have been waiting for. Ms. Pat is busy as a bee getting things arranged. It's looking like HOME now. Rollie and Gina, you would be proud!  Wish you were here.

Yesterday when Ms. Pat and I were on our walk out in the Park, you could see a few of the Aspen trees leaves turning a bright gold. You can smell Fall in the air and this morning the thermometer said 32* when we got up.   Fall is a beautiful time here in the Hills. The only bad thing about it is that it means another Summer is coming to a close.  In just one month, we will be all closed up here and headed South for the Winter. My how time does fly!

It was a GREAT WEEK!!!!

Thanks for stopping by and travel safe...........


This Blog is Published every Sunday and Wednesday..