Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Bigfoot & Breaking down on Memorial Weekend! :)

So, we just got our US Highspeed from Verizon, so, I'm back on line, whenever they have service. We're driving through a very wet and rainy California as i type this.. but, i'll start this entry with our leaving Victoria, BC and heading into the US on Memorial weekend.. while our RV started sounding like a Westy! :)

So, our last day in Victoria we hung out in the inner harbor of Victoria, there was both a large Sailing Boat race & bike Race going on.. so, the streets where all blocked off. What should have taken 10mins to drive took us over an hour and a half.  We had planned to be down there to meet up with friends four hours before our departure anyhow.  Good thing, as if we had left right before our departure, we would have missed the boat! Worked out perfectly.  Jerry is a master at this, he looked to see when the ferry before us was departing, and he aimed to get us there right then, so we could park the RV there and walk around.  As the RV is 24ft (with the bikes) there isn't anyplace downtown Victoria (or any vibrant downtown) that we could park an RV! So, good planning all around. 
We booked the ferry ahead of time, which too is a good thing, as they always sell out by the day of departure on long weekends. So, we were covered. 
Our friends where caught up in traffic too, so, we walked around, we bumped into friends from home, Gweneth Jones & Bob, nice surprise.  We did meet up with Lee-Anne & Norm, and went for lunch downtown, got caught up, then headed out. I'll be seeing them again in October, when i'm back out in Victoria doing my 10th 1/2 marathon with Kaily, who will be doing her second full marathon (if you add up her 1/2s and fulls, she's at 7 1/2 marathons..). 

 This cool house was next to where we where camped in Victoria.
 Duke waiting in Baloo (he`s in the drivers` seat whenever Jerry`s not!)
 Downtown Victoria
 Downtown Victoria
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 Downtown Victoria
 Downtown Victoria with our friends Norm & Lee-Anne
 Leaving Downtown Victoria, going by where we were camped
Leaving Downtown Victoria, going by where we were camped

So, we boarded and ventured across to Washington State, and headed out around the Olympic National Forest. Last year we drove around the west side of it, so, this year we drove around the east side of it.  We found a camp ground we both loved.  National Forest Camp Ground, where it's pay $10 to camp, honor system.  This camp ground we found didn't have water, so, it was empty, we have our water, we can camp anywhere, we even have solar panels for electricity! (We're really roughing it!).

So, that night we got to listen to the forest, as this is the forest that BigFoot's been sighted in.  So, we waited, we didn't see him. The next morning, Duke & I took off to find both BigFoot and the waterfalls we heard all night.  We found one of the two. 
 Camping in the Forest.
Duke practicing some of his jumping moves, happy to be out of the Baloo!

So we had a very enjoyable experience.  As we started off again, around 9am on the Sunday of the Memorial day weekend, Baloo (our RV) sounded louder then normal, and was getting louder. To me it sounded like a Westy (teteteteteteatatatete) but, after a while, it was getting louder. 

So, Jerry started mumbling words like blown casket, muffler, spark-plugs.  I said can't we just call Frank C and ask him to listen to the noise, he'd know.  So, did i mention that it was Sunday on Memorial day weekend! So, we were near Shelton Washington, we stopped at an Auto Car place and asked them if they knew of a mechanic in the area, he said, down the road, 2miles back, past the airport, on the right side, a green garage with no sign, that he's usually always there. So, we turned around and tried. Sure enough John & Bill were there.  Bill was the owner, he was like a thin "Larry the Cable Guy".  He had me in stitches when i realized he was joking with me, at first i thought he was serious, actually, Jerry had to tell me he was joking.  NICE people are they! Their shop is called Motor City Mad House! John & Jerry took a ride in Baloo to see what was wrong, i stayed behind, with Bill, his female dog named "Girl" and Duke.. Duke & Girl became friends quickly, it was clear she was a spoiled as Duke was.  So, they figured out the Exhaust Gasket blew out.  Then they broke two bolts trying to get off the rusty manifold, so, they had to take more stuff apart.  They had to go to town three times to get supplies.. John worked on it straight for 4 hours, no breaks, while Bill (and Girl) ran into town.  So, they fixed it, and it's been (knock on wood) running smooth since.. So, guess how much they charged us??  Four hours of work and Gaskets.. (those are round things, ours was missing parts of it, so, it wasn't sealing anymore..)  So, did you guess? $189! THAT"S IT! Can you believe it. And obviously, those guys were doing something else when we drove up, the stopped working on that other vehicle, and payed their full attention to us. We were very lucky.
So, we left there around 4pm, and headed into Oregon!

So, next blog, will be on our two very interesting Hotsprings adventures. 

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Last two days in Victoria.. Pulled Pork Poutine, followed by deep fried Mac&Cheese

We had a good two days with Kaily in Victoria.  Enjoyed getting caught up while feasting at her favourite restaurants.  (Tomorrow I'll start not eating as much, at least Kaily and i got a (fast for me) 10km run in this morning.. :) ).

 So, we took the dogs, Kaily's two Koda & Meeka, along with Duke to a wonderful beach for a walk. 

 Then went up to a Taco Shack for lunch.  They make everything from scratch at the taco shack, the shells and everything.

  That evening we caught the last part of a baseball game then out to dinner at the PIG, NICE place! Jerry had Pulled Pork Poutine, followed by deep fried Mac&Cheese.. OH MY GOD!  And today, we had desert TWICE! HELPP!!!!

 Back at our campsite at night.

Today we went to Kaily's home, then for a nice 10km run, then later hung out at the marina, Jerry was able to capture, on film here, this very patient bird waiting to eat an eel.  From when we got back, we saw him waiting, for at least one hour, we don't know how long he was there before.. (Jerry waited for 30mins until the bird caught and ate his eel..)

 Later this same evening out for dinner at 5th Ave Bar & Grill.

 Food there was some of the best food we've had on the trip so far.
Back at the RV, Kaily turned Duke into a lap dog.

Tomorrow, we're going to hang out at the Victoria inner harbor, then get on a ferrie at 2pm, start heading down the coast toward California.  We've decided to go around all the tornadoes, so, we're going straight south then east.. we'll see where the wind isn't blowing.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Camped in Victoria,BC now.. next to Funky Houseboats!

Love houseboats, Jerry found us a camp site where we are inter-mixed with them, right here in Victoria. It's a 10min bike right, or 30min walk downtown, on trails, right on the harbor, we'll be doing that trip a few times I'm sure.  So, YES, we're loving it.  These Houseboats each seem to have their own sailboat, nice lifestyle. 

 From our RV.. nice placement & wonderful dinner (not sure why we every go out!).

So, today, after having to replace 2 tires, front shocks and front brake work done.. we made our way from Parksville, BC to Victoria, BC.  The folks in Parksville who fixed our RV where wonderful, they worked on Baloo for about 3 hours and charged us for only 30mins, gotta like that! It rained today for really the first time on our trip, so, it was fine with us to have that work done today, and before we hit remote steep backcountry.  So, we're thankful.

Tomorrow we're going to run, then a bike in the afternoon, seeing as much of Kaily as we can (inbetween her work and baseball).  We're schedule to cross State side on Friday.


Monday, May 23, 2011

Vancouver Island.. not moving for two nights! :)

So, we left Harrison Hotsprings first thing, as we needed to get to Vancouver Island ferry's by 10ish, as all the other ferries till 6pm where sold out today.  We knew enough to call the night before and make reservations.. that's the only way to be sure you'll get your vehicle on, call and make reservations!  We took the ferry service out of Horseshoe Bay, over to Nanaimo. 

 Met some nice folks on the boat who suggested we might like their beautiful Rathtrevor Provincial Park, here in Parksville, there were right, we did love it, but there weren't any electrical hook-ups, and we are kinda spoiled now.  So, knowing we like the electricity, we wondered around the Town of Parksville.. found a number of RV camp grounds, we choose one right on the beach, we got a camp site on the Ocean, so, needless to say, we're very happy.. The tide on this beach goes out for a good 500 ft.at least
 On our beach, in front of our camp site!
 Tide's out, but, this big guy's interested in what's left behind (so are we.. tomorrow we're going to go pick some Crabs to eat!)

 Duke and I think we figured out the Tide schedule, so,we might go looking for crabs on the next low tide, around dawn we think. the three of us went for nice walks out there, and just enjoyed being in the sun on the beach.  Tomorrow, i hope to go for a run, I haven't ran in two weeks now.. feeling lazy, MUST get back into it! 
More soon. as our highspeed seems to be working well!