Friday, September 16, 2016

A slow trek north

We’ve been on the road one week and two days, driving short distances and making short stops. This trip is a test to see if our two new dogs -- 18-month-old Arlo and 16-month-old Maddie -- can handle RV travel. Or maybe it’s to see if Jim and I can handle RV travel with two young dogs.

We left our home in Salt Lake City early afternoon September 7. We'd totally unpacked he RV when we got home last fall; it seemed like it took us forever to get repacked and moving. Once we got going, we drove just two hours to Snowville, Utah. The campground greeters were two goats who followed me into the office. Not just to the office, but into the office. The campground has a big grassy field, a half mile walking trail, and lots of wild critter holes, so with all that and the goats it was a hit with the dogs. So far so good.

Thursday we drove 165 miles to Three Island State Park in Glenns Ferry Idaho.  Lovely state park with lots of kayaking opportunities we did not take advantage of, plus a short trail to a winery that we did take advantage of. Only thing better would have been a second walking path to a brew pub. We had dinner and a flight of wine at the Crossings Winery and walked, walked, walked the dogs. Glenns Ferry was a major stop on the Oregon trail. One of the most treacherous river crossings was at the Snake River near what is now the town of Glenns Ferry.

Day three we drove 200 miles to the Mountain View RV Park in Baker City. We’ve stayed there before and it’s clean, pretty, and well-run. Again, we walked the dogs (a great path along the tiny Powder River took us into town), explored downtown Baker City on foot (again with the dogs), and left the dogs in the car one evening while we had dinner at Barley Brown’s Brew Pub. The restaurant was very busy and we had to wait, but we give the food, service, and beer two thumbs up.  

After two days in Baker City, we spent one night at the Pilot RV Park in Stanfield Oregon, northwest of Pendleton. It’s part of a Pilot Travel Plaza but the place was immaculate and the grass between the sites was lush.  Amazing for an RV park in the high desert.  And yes, we were close to dozens of idling semis, but the noise faded into a low buzz by the time we went to bed.  And I had my first pumpkin spice latte of the season at a very nearby McDonalds.

After a night at the Pilot, we made a 45-mile hop to Kennewick, Washington, and stayed at the Columbia Sun RV Park, a huge (145 sites on 25 acres), well-maintained place. It has two laundry rooms, private bathroom/showers, a work out room, and a big gift shop. It's pricey -- $50 a night -- but we paid half price for two of those nights with our Passport America membership, a discount camping club. 

The dogs have been reasonably well behaved inside the motor home, but it was at Columbia Sun where Maddie bolted from the rig with Arlo in pursuit; they made a quarter mile dash to a field where Maddie had previously noticed birds. Jim followed, I brought up the rear with the leashes, and it seemed like most of the rest of the RV park residents watched and/or helped. 
The Earp and James Campground in Snowville, Utah, just miles from the Utah/Idaho border.  That's our rig in the middle.

Jim wrangling the dogs in Baker City, Idaho.  I'm taken way fewer photos this trip because it's hard to focus and hang on to a leashed dog at the same time.  There's got to be a solution.


  1. Can empathize with dog adjustment to RVing. With no history, Pippy went from the shelter to RVing full time with me. Even after a year, rabbits on our site will cause a bolt out the door. Photography works if she's explored the area before: 'stop, stay, and me standing on the leash' seems to work. Good luck and enjoy the process...

    1. Hi Judy! Our dogs are rescues, too. I'm going to try your advice. Maddie(the dog I usually have on leash) is pretty good with sit and stay, but a squirrel certainly throws a wrench in it. Glad you are still traveling.