Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Paid camps

7:30AM - Paid camps
Have you noticed lately that the TiogaRV Team has been staying in paid camps?   But yesterday we drove by several paid campgrounds.  Instead, MsTioga and I went looking for a boondock camp.  And we found one.  That is where we are right now!  I just wanted you to know that we can still find these free camps anytime we want.

Did you know that a bad campground is a lot worse than a bad boondock camp?  A bad campground can squish you in putting your RV only a few feet away from your neighbor who is playing their music for you to hear.

However, there are some things that paid camps have that a boondock or dry camp does not.  Paid camps are easier to find!  Also, you may have the illusion of safety while in a paid camp.  Also neighbors!  You will likely have neighbors with whom to visit.

MsTioga and I sat down together last nite to talk about our recent experience with paid camps. We both agree that a good paid camp can be a great time!

11AM - Near the coast
When we came to the intersection of US #101 and State #1 [Coast Road], we headed toward the Pacific Coast. MsTioga traveled thru the gorgeous forest on a very curvy road which went down, down, down to the Ocean.

We are now [here] at a private picnic area provided by the Medocino Redwoods Company. I am going to prepare a Belgian waffle for breakfast!

4PM - Nite Camp
MsTioga did not feel right about making our Nite Camp in the private picnic area. However, just across the road is a very deep pullout. This place is going to make a very good Nite Camp. There is even a small creek just a few feet away!


Tuesday, August 30, 2011


9AM - Favorite things
This morning I was thinking of the favorite things that I like to do.  You know something?  I like to do almost everything that I have been doing lately!  It is amazing when I think about that!  Especially when considering the emotional depths that I've struggled with since last September when David died.

One of my most favorite things is to get into MsTioga's driver's seat and begin driving.  What is it about just driving that is soooooo wonderful?

Another favorite thing is walking around seeing stuff.  Yesterday afternoon was such a good time just walking around Albee Campground looking for those apple trees.  During that walk I met several people camping and had a great time talking with them.  I met one British couple who were on their honeymoon.  These newly weds had rented a Class-A RV and were celebrating their honeymoon by exploring Northern California.  Can you imagine that!

You may guess that writing my blog and sharing what I am doing is way up there on my list of favorite things.  And you would be right!

4:30PM - Hwy #271 Nite Camp
We have made our Nite Camp on the side of the lightly traveled Hwy #271. Below our camp flows the hardly moving South Fork Eel River. We can only imagine what the South Fork looked like during the great 1964 flood when the river rose to where we are now camped!
River view from our Camp


Monday, August 29, 2011

Bull Creek trail

7AM - Bull Creek trail
Are you wondering what we are going to do today while in the most gorgeous Rockefeller Redwood Forest?  Hmmmmm?  New Mavicita and I are going to hike the fabulous Bull Creek trail.

We found a wonderful website [here] with pics of this trail!

11:30AM - Back from our hike
New Mavicita and I took the the Thornton Trail from Albee Creek Campground and went south to catch the Bull Creek Trail going east.  When we came to Tall Tree, we went north on the Addie Johnson Trail then took Horse Trail back to Albee Creek.

I used a walking stick and it was a lucky thing that I had that stick.  Several vicious attacking fawns came across the trail.  However, when these blood thirsty critters saw my stick, they took off for the safety of the forest!
Bull Creek Trail

5PM - John C. Albee
Being an amateur historian, I'm interested in what has happened before in the places where I camp.  I just read online about the man who lived here on the land now occupied by Albee Creek Campground.

John C. Albee's father was Uriah T. Albee acquired this land along Bull Creek in the late 1800s.  When the father died, John C. moved his family to the Bull Creek property where he engaged in a successful dairy business.  He also grew apples which were known for their quality [link].

I am going to search for those apple trees which should still be growing somewhere around here.
Albee's apples!


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Which road

8AM - Which road?
A couple of days ago we went east.  Then yesterday we went west over the same road.  This morning George was looking at a paper map of California.

MsTioga asked, "What are you doing?"
George said, "Figuring out which road to take".
MsTioga asked, "Where do you want to go?"
George replied, "I don't know".
MsTioga asked, "How will you know when you get there?"
George replied, "Our Nite Camp will be there".

11AM - Slow
MsTioga is moving south along Avenue of the Giants.  We are moving pretty slow.  A young man on a bicycle passed us up awhile back, and we have not caught up with him yet.

If there is anyplace to move slowly,  the redwood forest and Avenue of the Giants is that place.

We are now [here].

2PM - Eel River
MsTioga took a dirt road down to the Dyerville Bar on the Eel River. We had the thought of Nite Camping here. However, the wind is gusty and for MsTioga, this is not pleasant. So, we are moving on.

Our map location on the Dyerville Bar is [here].  We are the "green" arrow.  The bridge downriver is for the railroad.
MsTioga on Dyerville Bar

3PM - Albee Creek again!
If you click on our Nite Camp Location below, you may be surprised to see that the TiogaRV Team is back at Albee Creek once again.  How could we resist driving thru the Rockefeller Forest once again?  And camping here too!

Do you remember seeing the video of our drive thru Rockefeller Forest when we were here before?


Saturday, August 27, 2011

Wandering west

7AM - Wandering west
A few days ago we left Eureka and went east looking for the sunshine.  We found the sunshine and it was warm.  We like the fog and overcast better!  So, we are wandering west this morning.  Returning to the Pacific coast.

Does it really matter that we are retracing our path?  MsTioga doesn't think so.  She believes that what's important is having a good time wherever we go.

10:30AM - Eureka for breakfast
The shuttle driver for Harper Ford in Eureka told of a restaurant that had a good reputation.  It is "Chalet House of Omelettes".  So, we searched for this restaurant using our Garmin Nuvi GPS.

When we first arrived in Eureka, the overcast was down to tree top level in some areas.  We are going to head south after breakfast hoping to find a place where Mr. Sunny can charge his battery bank.  Otherwise, our Little Honda generator will have to do that charging job.

1PM - September is coming....
It has not escaped us on the TiogaRV Team that September is coming.  Oh, September!  What memories you bring to mind.

This is our first September anniversary since Son David went away forever.  It is also the 10th anniversary of the tragedy of the World Trade Towers in 2001.

Partly cloudy

Friday, August 26, 2011


8AM - Beat by the heat!
Yesterday we headed east out of Eureka searching for the sunshine.  We found that sunshine in the Six Rivers National Forest.  We like it out here, except for one thing.  It's forecast to be 97°F today!  Wow!

We are going to stick around here for awhile today to find out how MsTioga and The Team are doing when it starts to get warm.

10AM - Pancake combo
Yesterday when eating breakfast at the Blue Lake Casino, I wanted to order a pancake combination,   The restaurant in the casino offered pancakes, but no combination including eggs and bacon.  Eggs and bacon ordered separately were much too expensive.  However, a lot less expensive than playing 21 after breakfast!.

This morning I am making my own pancake combo inside MsTioga's kitchen.

We have moved into the Town of Willow Creek for awhile in order to be in the Sun for solar charging.  Mr. Sunny is only getting 11 amps at this hour!
Breakfast prepared in MsTioga's kitchen

4PM - Staying in the forest
Well, I guess the heat of the day was OK, because we are still here in the forest.  MsTioga is camped in the same place as last nite.  The temperature is 89°F both inside and outside.  It is pretty shady here in the campground.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Engine coolant

7AM - What I learned about engine coolant
Reader Steve in Houston asked me in ShoutBox to write a small essay on what I learned about engine coolant.  You may remember that yesterday at Harper Ford here in Eureka, California, MsTioga had her radiator replaced.  Her radiator had failed three times before.  Also, MsTioga's heater core had failed three times as well.

Just before I left Harper Ford I had a conversation with their senior mechanic.  We talked about galvanic corrosion and engine coolant.  Galvanic corrosion occurs in a radiator when there is a stray electrical current flowing in the engine coolant.  This stray electrical current is likely very small.  Maybe 1/2 to 1-1/2 volts.

Galvanic corrosion may be described as electrical etching of the weaker metal such as the metal aluminum.  In order for that electrical etching to take place in a radiator, the engine coolant has to be able to carry an electric current.  To prevent coolant from having the capacity to carry a current, the coolant should be of the type that needs to be mixed with water.  NOT the premixed coolant.   And the water used to do the mixing must be distilled water.

Question:  How do we know when we have a galvanic corrosion problem?

Answer:  I bought a radiator cap with a sacrificial anode attached.  This sacrificial anode is made from magnesium, a very weak metal.  If this magnesium anode begins to be etched away, I will know that galvanic corrosion is taking place.  Then MsTioga's engine coolant will be drained and replaced with pure coolant and distilled water.

Here is a [link] to the company where MsTioga's new radiator cap was purchased.

10AM - Blue Lake Casino
It is overcast in Eureka.  So, we decided to head east to find some Sunshine!   When we arrived in the Town of Blue Lake, we needed some gas, so we pulled off of Hwy #299.  We found that the Blue Lake Casino is located here. We are now [here].

There is a special parking area for RVs.  MsTioga is parked there now.  We used the provided RV dump and filled our fresh water tank.  Now we are going into the casino and see what's for breakfast!

12 Noon - Gambling
I haven't gambled for many years.  I like to play craps.  The only table games they have at Blue Lake Casino are with cards.   So, I sat down to play 21.  After one hour of playing 21, the cost of my breakfast went up from $10 to $30!

5:30PM - Boise Creek Campground
Our Nite Camp is inside the Six Rivers National Forest at the Boise Creek Campground.  The campground is located just a bit west of the Town of Willow Creek.  We went grocery shopping at Ray's Food Place in Willow Creek, then returned here to spend the nite.

Why did we drive way out here?  To be in T-Shirt & Short Pants weather!

PS: It only costs $5 to stay here for the nite with our Senior Pass!
George & Tioga in Boise Creek Campground


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Harper WiFi

7AM - Harper Ford WiFi
Last nite after going for supper at the Samoa Cookhouse and failing to eat like a lumberjack, we returned to our Nite Camp spot at Harper Ford.  There is a very fast WiFi here.  During the nite using that WiFi, we downloaded "The Notebook", a wonderful love story starring Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams.  There is real chemistry with these two because they were actually romantically involved with each other.

I really enjoyed the part of the movie when these two were young.  However, I was troubled during the parts where these two were staying in a senior home and one of them suffered from severe dementia or Alzheimer's.  That part scares me because I think about that happening to me!

3PM - MsTioga is back on the road!
Cost a bit over $1,000 bucks for this service.  But now I know more about engine coolant and its relationship to galvanic corrosion.  As I wrote before, soon MsTioga will have a radiator cap with a magnesium sacrificial anode attached to it.  I am hoping that with the proper engine coolant and the sacrificial anode, galvanic corrosion will be stopped.

Right now I am treating myself to a Senior Steak and salad bar at the Sizzler here in the City of Eureka!  I'm making this post from Sizzler.  

Partly cloudy

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Ford dealer

8:30AM - Back to Ford dealer
You may recall that Harper Ford is ordering several parts for MsTioga.  Yesterday afternoon a phone call came in from Harper that all those parts have arrived.  We are scheduled for service tomorrow at 8am.  So, today we are zooming the entire distance of 105 miles back to Harper Ford in Eureka. We want to Nite Camp on Harper's lot.

MsTioga's radiator is being replaced.  The new radiator is made from brass and should not leak as the old one that was made from aluminum did.  MsTioga also has door-lock parts that have worn out.  The power steering high pressure hose is being replaced.  Also, MsTioga wants her thermostat replaced.  There may be some other things too, but I forgot what they are.

Climbing on to MsTioga's roof
A few readers posted in ShoutBox about me going up on MsTioga's roof to tilt Mr. Sunny's solar panels.  My going up on the roof has been worried about before.  Some readers believe that it is dangerous for me to go up there.  I guess because I am too old now.

However, I politely disagree.  I believe that it is good for me to go up there.  Yes, I have to be careful while walking on the roof.  But the roof is big.

If I stopped going up on the roof, I believe that soon I would not be able to go up there.  It's good for me to go up the ladder.  It feels good for me to test myself by walking up there.

If ever I get to feel unsafe up on MsTioga's roof, I won't go up there anymore.

1PM - Elk
MsTioga took the Drury Scenic Parkway, an alternate to US #101. The parkway goes thru the redwoods. There is a prairie where elk are supposed to be grazing. We stayed next to that prairie and did not see even one elk!

However, down the road we saw a bunch of elk hanging out in a front yard!