Posts Tagged ‘camp hosts’

Modern-Nomads and Coronagate

Before every genocide, those who were mass murdered were considered ‘inhuman’ or a ‘problem to society.’  Fear of these groups was instilled by government leaders in the public mind through imposed rules and regulations until no one trusted their neighbor and everyone feared those who acted differently from them. This should not be the United States, but it is becoming so because a majority of citizens are willing to give up their Constitutional Rights, even basic civil rights, because they lack  real understanding about health care, immune systems, and fighting illness.  This loss of understanding about the human body has allowed a virus, a deadly virus to those who have underlying health problems, to change the values of our country. Many people, especially young state-educated people, lack a real understanding of why this country was founded, what this country stands for and the reason so many foreigners want to enter our borders – illegally.  Sadly, with the events of the past two months, the foundation to remain a free country with liberties like no other have eroded with the flood of microbial parasites. Sooner than later the ‘new normal’ may be like Venezuela lining up for food that doesn’t exist or China wearing masks not because of pollution, but because it’s mandated by government-paid health officials.

There is a little blurb going around FB about judging the man who needs to be painting so he doesn’t smoke or the rest in the list of people who have needs that appear ‘non-essential’ to you, but to them are very essential, life-sustaining essential.  With great fervor, we are being told by many state and local officials what is considered ‘essential.’  How can they do that? On what do they base their guidelines?  What is ‘essential’ to my life may not be ‘essential’ to yours (except maybe TP), but we are being programed to look at others’ lives and judge whether they are doing ‘essential’ things, and if in our opinion they aren’t, we either turn them into authorities or spew nonsense about them to others publicly. This spewing of nonsense is the foundation for creating divisions in a society that will eventually deem some people ‘inhuman’ and whose lives become expendable.  Though it hasn’t gone that far in specifics, I have been judged by a few that I don’t care about others because I don’t follow certain protocol.

My husband and I full-time RV. This means we live in our fifth-wheel all the time.   We do not own a brick and mortar home anywhere on planet earth.  My bedroom, kitchen and living room are like a condo on wheels; some consider what we do as glamping.  My husband and I sold pretty much everything we owned four years ago keeping a few personal items in storage.  Part of the decision was definitely our choice for retirement; the other part came from losing a job before retirement in a place where there were no opportunities for work.

We are not just vacationers traveling around spreading this virus.

Let me repeat.  We are not just vacationers traveling around spreading this virus.  Those who believe this judgmental nonsense need to research where that idea comes from and check the motive of their heart.

When we are on the road, we are looking for a place to park and live just like the rest of society.  Our home just happens to have wheels. We stop sometimes for one night; sometimes for longer because driving does become tiresome.  Still, we have a home and this is how we have chosen to live and pursue our happiness with the liberty we supposedly have in this country.  That liberty is being quickly chiseled away by state governments closing their borders – insane when many of these same politicians wanted open borders only a few months ago.  Some states like Utah are requiring health papers to travel through or stay a short time in their state.  This is reminiscent of Nazi Germany and lest you believe I’m over-reacting, just keep listening to the news or stop listening to the news and open your eyes and ears to what is really happening in this country all because of illness.  

Some people who live in their motorhomes are traveling workers.  Our one neighbor in Las Vegas is a construction worker who travels to where he finds good work. Good work meaning, work hard for several months and then enjoy some time off.  While here, he is helping build the new Raider stadium.  So, you’re not into football?  We have also met traveling nurses who go where they are needed as well. Is their work essential?  What if they are the ones you are dissing about traveling and taking disease to another place?  Our neighbor on the other side is a school teacher.  They were paying way too much in rent and decided to live like us.  She does online schooling for children around the country.  Is her job non-essential? 

Others like us are seasonal employees.  We work different jobs in winter (I cleaned the post office in Cooper Landing, Alaska this winter while my husband was a ski instructor at Alyeska Resort).  Summers we camp host in Alaska.  And as we travel from one place to another from the Kenai Peninsula to the Lower 48, we visit our children who live in various places in the US sometimes having layovers to enjoy our country’s beautiful landscapes.  Again, we are not just vacationing and spreading disease. We are working, paying bills and hoping our retirement isn’t destroyed with the supposed ‘cure’ for this virus – shutting down an entire economy.   We are in Las Vegas because we flew here from Alaska for personal business and then all of this nonsense began taking over sane people’s thought processes (or maybe they weren’t so sane) and in a sense we’re stuck. 

In the beginning of this ‘pandemic,’ we were told very different things than we are now.  Initially we were told over and over and over that fresh air and sunshine, washing hands and social distancing was the key to keep the virus from spreading.  Those of us who live in our multi-wheeled homes do that all the time.  We are in the fresh air, sunshine and always practice social distancing.  These are a given with this lifestyle and living in campgrounds.   We stay in our unique homes or go do outside activities.  Rarely do we socialize with neighbors because they are doing the same thing.

Campgrounds like Colorado State’s Cherry Creek which cancelled our reservations have sites that are volleyball court-sized apart. Social-distancing is built into the campground, but still they closed it down for those of us who have a place to ‘quarantine’ while allowing for hikers, bikers, and boaters.  Government campgrounds all over the US are closing down which leaves people like us without any place to live.  Thank you to private parks like the KOAs who remained open. So, instead of judging those driving through your little towns and villages with out-of-state license plates, consider they may be just looking for a place where they can drop their stabilizers. They may even be locals coming home to family.  

As for being camp hosts, we do talk with people, but we also keep a social distance.  That’s normal for Americans, not so much for Italians who greet one another with a kiss. We are not Italians; we don’t greet anyone that way.  We aren’t spreading disease. Camp hosts have many jobs and some suggest we will breed the virus through touching doorknobs to offices or even toilet paper rolls.  Those issues don’t seem to be discussed when going shopping for groceries or using public restrooms.  So why are they discussed with people who have all those amenities in their motorhomes or fifth-wheel trailers?

In the beginning, we were told that masks should not be worn by healthy people. Now, because they have instilled more fear about this virus, no one can know if they’re healthy and everyone wears a mask. If fresh air kills the virus, then why are people told to breathe through a piece of fabric which traps their own possibly-infected droplets and then rebreathe their own carbon dioxide?  Doesn’t anyone ever consider the lunacy?

I wore an N-95 mask last summer to prevent smoke inhalation during a severe forest fire when the dangerous air particles were so concentrated they were off the known charts. The smoke was so thick I couldn’t see anything.  Breathing caused me to cough; the ash-filled air burnt my eyes.  It was dangerous!  Very dangerous!  This virus is definitely not that.  The ppm of the particles are not that concentrated and they dissipate into the atmosphere around us.  Scientists in Germany are now saying the virus doesn’t even last long on surfaces. So wearing gloves is moot too.  We don’t have to wash our groceries or bathe our shoes in bleach.  Medical doctors on the front lines say that the spread of the virus happens when people are accumulated together for extended time periods like 30 minutes in a hospital setting.  So, door knobs and whatever else I come in contact within a campground won’t have the pathogens attached to it even though politically charged news medias claim it.  In all honestly, I’ve had more issues with people defecating in the woods which is far more disgusting and dangerous. Fresh air and sunshine doesn’t rid the environment of those things nearly as quickly.

My husband and I are leaving Las Vegas in two days.  We are not going through Utah as originally planned because we don’t want to go through their border surveillance, receive a text with a Qcode with information on how to fill out our health paperwork.  Instead, we will go through Arizona and New Mexico to get to Colorado and our storage unit.  We will visit our children in Colorado because we are not separating ourselves from family members no matter how young or old.  It’s not from a lack of caring, it is because we do care.  We should all be caring about our families. Everyone needs a hug now and then for their psychological health; everyone. It has been proven. From Colorado we are heading to South Dakota where we made our legal residency as do many other fulltime RVers, hence why you may see a lot of South Dakota tags on traveling homes along with Texas and Florida.

So, off we will drive toward our rental ‘space,’ wherever that may be, in the Black Hills where the governor has maintained her sanity, keeping the numbers small and immunities flourish. A state where we can retain our civil rights as human beings with our ultimate end goal of returning to the Last Frontier and maybe never returning to the Lower 48 via the closed-off Canadian border.

There are many reading this who will see us on the road believing the ridiculous fallacy that we are spreading the virus wherever we go because we are crossing state lines. We have been in the gated community known as the Las Vegas RV Resort for one month. Technically, we have ‘set ourselves apart’ and have no symptoms and haven’t shown any this entire month in spite of going out to buy necessities and visiting our son.  We will no longer allow a virus to control our lives; we no longer believe the government and its ‘health’ officials have our best interest in mind.  If they did, they would be social distancing, wearing gloves and masks during their public encounters. So, we’re just going to continue living in our condo on wheels wherever we can find a place that still accepts living, breathing human beings as valued people in the society and hope the next time you see a motorhome or trailer bounding on your streets, you take a moment and consider who in there is not only healthy and essential to someone else, but just may be trying to find an open campground to ‘quarantine.’

©2020 Tentstake Ministries Publishing, all rights reserved.  No copying or reproducing of this article without crediting the author or Tentstake Ministries Publishing. 

Alaska or Bust

I believe I finally understand what that slogan means. I had always thought it was silly when I saw people with that written on their car windows in such modern times, but even in modern times, you can BUST on your way to Alaska.

Whitehorse, Yukon

Flat Leaves AGAIN!

Our slogan from when we left Watson Lake might have been Whitehorse or Bust! With flat leaf springs we could only hope to make it to the ‘big city’ or capital of the Yukon without any more springs flattening out. We first stopped at an RV repair place and the woman’s expression when she saw the one spring was: “It’s flat as a pancake, eh?” Eh? Yes. They couldn’t work with us so we called a tire place we used last year (Integra Tire) and they recommended “Tamarac Welding and Springs.” Note: I link places just in case you’re the one with the Alaska or Bust slogan and find yourself needing help.

It was difficult find this place as it was only a small quonset set back off the main road. They were very nice and told us we could park on their lot overnight and they would begin the job of replacing all four leaf springs in the morning. They were going to put 6-leaf springs on instead of the 5-leaf ones that just didn’t hold up. They had to fix U-bolts and nuts as well. What we have learned through this experience is multi-faceted. When you are looking for a trailer, fifth-wheel, whatever, the first thing to consider is the frame and the suspension. Dealers and manufacturers love that we look at floorplans and how nice the inside is, but if the rig can’t carry the weight of even an empty trailer, you will find yourself in the same mess that we did. And, we aren’t the only ones we are learning. Manufacturers also build rigs to the basic of all basic specifications. In other words, they build them CHEAP. The nuts they used on the U-bolts holding everything together are tiny – just like they staple things together inside the rig. Yes, they worry about weight, but a heavier bolt or a few more screws will not add that much more weight. The weight specifications are really ridiculous. We have a 42-foot fifth wheel with lots of storage space underneath and cabinets inside, yet the limitations are low when one considers what they will fill these areas with. So, shop and study before you buy. Do NOT ask dealers anything because they have no clue. I asked one dealer at an RV show about their 42-foot fifth wheel, a different manufacturer than ours, about the two axles and the possibility of the exterior cracking. He said ‘that is impossible.’ I walked away laughing because I knew he was either lying or was that ignorant of what driving these trailers on roads can actually do to the suspension, frames and even interiors.

So, May 7, 2019 we woke up early to be out of our trailer so they would work on our leaf springs. May 7 is also our anniversary – 35 years. We were married in a tiny church in a little place called Salina in Boulder County. We were surrounded by only a few friends and some family. I would never have dreamed on that day that I would ever celebrate my anniversary in the Yukon with a trailer parked in a parking lot.

We decided to be tourons in Whitehorse. We walked along the Yukon River, left rack cards for our son-in-law’s fishing company in the Visitor Center, had coffee at Java, a locals coffee shop, and ate lunch at the Burnt Toast Cafe. We returned to find our trailer finished and it was only 1:30 p.m. The owner talked with us a bit about the scale sheets we had and we learned even more about what went wrong with the leaf springs. Needless to say my husband is once again writing to the manufacturer because when we picked it up in Indiana, they neglected to tell us a lot.

With daylight lasting until about 10:30 p.m., we decided to hitch up and drive our regular 6-8 hours. The closer to the border of Alaska, the better. We were done BUSTING! The only bummer was that we really wanted to stop for coffee in Haines Junction at The Village Coffee Shop, but we had just had coffee. So, we pass through town knowing that it would be a long time until we could stop there again because of their ridiculous hours.

Haines Junction

Haines Junction is one of the most beautiful places in the universe – in my opinion. The mountains are majestic and breath-taking. From Haines Junction the Alcan goes through Kulane National Park.

This year the riverbed was so dry that we encountered a dust storm. Yes, a dust storm like we had on the Nebraska plains. We saw some sheep on the hillside and continued on through Destruction Bay and Burwash Landing. We knew that we were soon coming upon a very cool RV park that we had stayed at last fall and were ready to stop for the night. BUT, like everything else, it was closed until May 15. So, we kept on driving until Beaver Creek about 20 miles from the Alaska Border. Two years ago we stayed at this same park, but because the pantry was so poorly made, I spent hours cleaning up the mess from broken shelves. This time we just relaxed and enjoyed the evening by curling up on our respective sofas and reading books. It sure is nice not to have leaf spring worries!


The next morning we crossed the border! Finally back in the U.S. We met a young woman at the border who took our photo though the sign is NOT the rustic last frontier-ish looking as it used to be. Blue and Yellow? She was heading north to Denali and Fairbanks. She had never heard of the Kenai and we told her she needed to go to Alaska’s playground. She took down lots of information and several days later we had a note at our trailer. She missed us on her way back from Homer!

Our goal for the day was Tok, Alaska. It was only a two-hour drive, but we wanted some time for a side trip to Chicken. We pulled into a wonderful RV Park – Tok Village – and were excited to learn that they not only had water flowing, but had opened their RV wash and we could wash the dirt and mud that had been accumulating since Fort Nelson.

After getting ourselves situated, we filled our truck with fuel and drove to our next adventure of Chicken, Alaska.

©2019 Tentstake Ministries Publishing, all rights reserved.  No copying or reproducing of this article without crediting the author or Tentstake Ministries Publishing.

Down, Flannel and a Shovel

As we started out from Dawson Creek, the sky varied between cloudy and sunny, but sun won out until about 101 miles up the Alcan at a place called ‘Won O Won.’  The flurries began to blow sideways until some rested, melted and made the pavement wet.  I began the day’s drive and when we arrived at the top of Pink Mountain, my husband requested a stop at Sasquatch Crossing.  He wanted lunch.  

At Sasquatch Crossing, the blowing snow pelted us as we trudged through muddy puddles into the restaurant.  A few conversations with the folks there revealed that it continued to snow for the next 100 km (60 miles),  but the sun shone in Fort Nelson.  We hoped for this to be true. 

Sasquatch Menu

I had Sasquatch Vegetable Soup, but my husband opted for chicken – even though the menu said Sasquatch tastes like beef!  With warmth in our tummies, we ventured back out into the near whiteout conditions to continue our northern drive to Fort Nelson.   

We either followed the snow or it followed us because at one stop, it was requested that we please bring warmer weather from the south.  It had not been warmer in the south and the snow continued to blow across the road now sticking to the wide and mowed sides.    We looked for bears as we always do knowing they would stick out black if they weren’t littered with snowflakes.

When we arrived at Fort Nelson, it was brrrrrr cold and the sun stood high in the sky.  We decided to spend the night here because we had no idea what the road conditions would be like on Steamboat Hill to Summit Lake Pass.  Hauling 16,000 pounds of our home is not something we wanted to chance on possible black ice and sliding off a mountainside. 

Soon after we set up, the snow began in Fort Nelson. We watched some courageous bundled-up campers make several loops around the campground for exercise.  After a quick supper of tomato soup and grilled cheese, we decided to venture into the cold and walk off the many days of seat butt.  We pulled out our down coats, scarves, gloves and hats that were nicely packed away until next winter.  As we walked around the campground that began filling up with others who didn’t want to make the trip over the mountains, the temperatures dropped and the wind blew harder.  Once back in our trailer, we tucked ourselves into our bed now made with flannel sheets that had been packed away.  We read books until we fell asleep cozy and warm. 

Day One in Fort Nelson

We woke up to several centimeters of snow on the ground and sub-zero temperatures (in Celcius).  My husband located  our packed-away shovel and cleared off our steps and a little path to the truck.   Is it really May 3?  Is it really this cold?  He visited a few of the nearest campers with big rigs to learn they were all spending a second night at the Triple G Hideaway Campground in order to avoid the ice and snow in the mountains.   One of the couples, Jim and Carolyn will be camp hosting at Hope, Alaska at Porcupine National Forest Campground!  We met some co-workers for ARM.  (I have to admit that I followed them for a while on the Alcan.  They drove very slowly we and chalked it up to them being from Kansas.  Sorry, Bob and Stacy.   Eventually I was so tired of following them, I pulled over.  Several miles down the road they pulled over in the blizzard conditions, but then continued onto the same campground – really the only open campground around.   Yep, I feel stupid now.) 

I called several places on the road ahead – Northern Rockies Lodge in Mucho Lake, Toad River Lodge in Toad River and the Liard Hot Springs Lodge in Liard, but no one knew the road conditions over the passes!  This isn’t Colorado where there are always updates on the road conditions of the passes.  As we vacillated between staying or taking a chance by leaving,  I could hear my brother’s voice in my head, “You are full-time RV’ers, what’s your hurry?”  Well, we would like to get to Alaska before summer.  He reminded me in a text that we have until the summer solstice on June 19.  

I made pancakes and eggs doused in the last of the syrup given to us by some friends we made last year. Thank you, Brent and Sonya!   My husband went to the nearest place and filled our empty propane tank so we could run our furnace.  He then cleaned the ice and snow from the top of our slides.   He also dropped the warm window curtains I had made for Cherry Creek for the winter, but the bottom velcro had been removed when we sent the trailer to Indiana.  I spent a couple of hours working on  them with the minimal supplies I had so they would shut tightly against the windows.  Now, let the cold wind blow while I sit next to our little fireplace and type on my computer.  

We went to the office to pay for another night and met a couple who were tent camping their way to Fort Collins from Anchorage.  He is starting engineering school at CSU and she is a bio-engineer on the search for a job.  We told them we began our trek from Fort Collins and the weather will be gorgeous, summer-like.  They ordered some coffee and got back in their Jeep to head south for a new life.    

Coffee Break

Late in the afternoon, we decided to venture out and go to Tim Hortons for something warm to drink.  We met two men, Steve and Alvin, who had worked in the oil and gas industry before it all disappeared into a Middle Eastern economy.  They were two very hilarious Canadian men and we chatted with them for a few hours about everything from hockey and Tim Horton to motorcycles to socialist politics to jokes about three-legged dogs and how how natives feel about snow to the great musicians of Canada.  Whenever we said we needed to leave, they would ask, “Where do you need to be?  What are you going to do?”  They were right.  So, we hung out.

The buzzing on my phone app from the missiles from Gaza attacking Israel haven’t stopped for hours – over 500 now.   One article in the Jerusalem Post quoted a Gazan leader, “The resistance from Gaza won’t stop until the occupation is over.”  When is Israel going to defend itself?

As we were walking out of Timmies, we decided to talk to a man whose truck was covered in ice about the conditions on the passes.  He told us it wasn’t bad though waiting until tomorrow would be better for a truck and trailer like ours.  He was heading to Las Vegas, helping his son move to Summerlin from Anchorage.  Okay, now it’s getting weird.  Our daughter lives in Fort Collins and our son just moved to Summerlin!  Apparently, we are supposed to be hanging out here in good ole’ Fort Nelson meeting people moving where our children live?

Day Two in Fort Nelson.

Though we had hoped the passes would be less icy and snowy, the mountain cams didn’t show better conditions.  Motorhomes and fifth-wheels that had come in the night before were iced over. Most said the roads were nearly impassable.  Our neighbors couldn’t even get their step down because it was frozen solid in an upright position.  They were using a hatchet to chip away at the ice! 

The Meaning of Adventure

While standing in the office waiting to pay for a second night, there were several other campers doing the same.  The word ‘adventure’ kept popping up in the conversations with one woman stating, “This life is always an adventure, eh?”   I decided to look up the word adventure: “an unusual and exciting, typically hazardous, experience or activity.”  I liked the word ‘hazardous’ in the definition.  Not. 

After a short walk around the campground to rid ourselves of some cabin fever, we decided to go to Tim Horton’s again.  We have been here long enough that we act like the Canadians – sitting in a coffee shop named after an ice hockey player, chatting with the locals and playing on the internet.  

After having a coffee, we had nothing better to do than to check out the local hardware store.  It had everything from toys to kitchen necessities to plumbing and electrical to yard decorations.  Not only did it kill some time, but I found a nice water bottle for taking with me in the truck.  I believe I already mentioned that we bought a Berkey water filter so we could be more ‘green’.  We were reusing the plastic water bottles, but it didn’t seem very hygienic so I bought a very nice stainless steel insulated bottle that actually fits in the drink holder!  Now I have a souvenir from my snow days in Fort Nelson!  

One of our day’s ‘adventures’ which wasn’t too hazardous was to explore the streets of Fort Nelson off of the main highway.  We drove to the airport and on our way there, several girls were walking along the road and started waving frantically.  We waved back and they cheered!  It must be exciting for them to see a truck from South Dakota? Or is life that boring here?   On the way back from the airport, we were blessed to see this little lady posing just for us by the side of the road.    

Speaking of water, we have also run out in our holding tank.  We didn’t expect to be here as long as we have been and though we try to conserve water, it doesn’t last forever.  We have three options.  The first is to close the trailer up and drive it about 50 yards to the laundry room and fill the tank with one of their hoses.  I don’t like that option because then we have to pack up and unpack.  It’s muddy and cold and is just tedious non-essential work.  The second is to fill the water bladder we use in Alaska to haul water when we boondock.  It’s a wonderful option except that it’s very cold outside and there would be no way to drain it so the little water remaining in it would freeze, crack the bladder and become useless in Alaska.  The third option is to fill a one-gallon jug with water for flushing the toilet and fill our 2-gallon jug for doing dishes.  That is the the option we chose.  Our Burkey has been filtering water consistently so we also have nearly 2 gallons of drinking water.

Now it’s evening and we’re doing little projects to help pass the time and get ready for our departure tomorrow.  The mountain cam has the road looking a little better and we expect warmer temperatures tomorrow.  The sun burst through the clouds a bit today so maybe … we’ll be on the road tomorrow heading toward Toad River, Muncho Lake and Liard.  If not, wait for Day 3 in Fort Nelson. 

©2019 Tentstake Ministries Publishing, all rights reserved.  No copying or reproducing of this article without crediting the author or Tentstake Ministries Publishing.

Meet Tezzy, the Hedgehog

Tezzy from Teslin Sunning Herself

This is Tezzy.  When we found her, she was wet and freezing near Teslin in the Yukon Territory.  We took her in our car and placed her on our dashboard to warm up and dry. Since that cold and rainy day day, she has been keeping an eye on us wherever we go.

Because of her near-death condition when we found her, she cannot remember anything before coming into our lives.  But since being with us,  she has traveled to many places.  She left the Yukon in the fall, went to British Columbia and Jasper National Park in Alberta, Canada.   She has traveled the Cassiar Highway and now the Alcan to Alaska. She helped us move from our home in Nebraska and was a proficient camp host in Colorado.  She took the journey with us to pick up our Crusader in Indiana holding on tightly with the rough roads in Indiana and Illinois, in the wind of Missouri and Kansas, and hoping she didn’t fall out in the muddy Mississippi to be lost forever.

Tezzy at Johnson Crossing

Today, on her journey to Alaska with us, she revisited the place where she became lost – Johnson’s Crossing.  As we approached the historic landmark, her excitement grew and she asked that we take some photos of her with the grandiose background of the St. Elias/Wrangell Mountains.  She continues to sit on the dashboard watching the mountain scenery pass sometimes having to peek through snowflakes or raindrops on the windshield.

She wants you to see all the places she has been and things she has done.  We will see about doing that, but we don’t want her getting lost and feeling alone again.

PS. She’s better than any pet. We don’t have to feed her, stop for her to use the facilitrees, or listen to her whine when the days are long.

Tentstake Ministries Publishing, all rights reserved.  No copying or reproducing of this article without crediting the author or Tentstake Ministries Publishing.