Thursday, September 13, 2012

Rough Road Ahead & Trip to Brazil

One thing you learn early on when RVing is that plans are made in jello. We had planned to leave on 9/11. We had company over the weekend and were glad to have seen Erin than leave on time and miss her. We had a great time visiting and getting caught up on what she has been doing.

We changed our plans to leave on 9/12 and were ready to go around noon. We aren't early risers and noon was fine with us. That is when the &^#* hit the fan as they say. We were all loaded and proceeded to back the motor home down the road to the meadow so we could turn around. Right off the bat we hit a small stump along side of the road and scratched the unit. Not bad, but not a good omen. Things went downhill fast after that. There were three small saplings (4inch) that prevented me from turning sooner and the motor home was all cockeyed half in the meadow and half in the road. Not room to maneuver the unit and I decided the trees had to go.

Out came the chain saw and I sharpened it so I could make fast work of the saplings. Then it wouldn't start. Oooops! Down to get our neighbor Ken to give me a hand with his chain saw. He came over quickly and we cut down the trees and shoved them back into the woods. Then I was able to get the unit turned around enough to get out of there; however, not before I had to trim some pine tree branches that were in the way.  Jack came up to lend a hand and we appreciated his help.

Of course this all took about 2+ hours and then we finally got out of there around 3:30pm and stopped to fuel up and were on our way. We had planned on stopping in Clayton, OH the first night, but only made it to Cabela's in Wheeling, WV, stopping around 10pm.

That was a trip to remember also since the exit off I-77 N onto I-70 West at Washington, PA was barricaded shut. We had to exit onto I-70 East in order to turn West. That entailed driving down to the next exit and turning around. They dropped us off on a miserable intersection with only a stop sign and there was a line of traffic waiting to make the turn. I thought that was going to be the title of the post, but it became secondary today.

We made it across Ohio fairly easily and fueled up at a Walmart where we bought a gift card first and took advantage of their 10 cent discount per gallon. It added up since we took on 75 gallons of diesel fuel. That was a big ouch in the wallet, but expected, so no real problem.

We chatted with an Ohio state trooper while filling up the motor home. He was a very nice young man and knew his job really well. Ohio recently lifted the speed limit on trucks to 65mph and I said that was great since I was tired of driving 55mph in the motor home as we crossed the state. Why, he said. We could have driven 65 years ago since the lower speed limit didn't apply to RVs. I wish I had known that 17 years ago!

Then it got interesting on the trip west. We got to Indiana and the roads there are terrible. It shook the motor home so much that my passenger side mirror started listing to the right. I had to stop and tighten the bolts to keep it upright. No big problem. The road was rough all the way to Indianapolis and then smoothed out for a while. That was when we saw the sign for 55 miles of road construction and to exit I-70 and take US 40 to save time. They were right. We came to a complete standstill and then took over 45 minutes to go one mile to an exit. We got off I-70 and continued on US 40 through Brazil, IN for 25 miles or so and tried to get back on. Ne deal, it was still a mess. Back to 40 and another 12 miles before we finally got above the backups. Then at the IN/IL border there was more construction that slowed us down! Once we got into Illinois it was smoother sailing to the campground.

Just another couple days in the life of RVers.

BTW: The Allegro Bus ran great and I was more than pleased with it's power getting up and down the mountains of Western MD & WV. More importantly, the engine brake exceeded all expectations with it's braking power. I hardly ever used the brake and we were in great shape. Love it!

P.S. Yes, BC stops were taken in between all the construction mess and rough roads. I have to set a good example for our FSILINC.


  1. Sure hope the rest of your journey is easier than the first legs but at least you are both OK.

  2. Well I had good luck yesterday and you had bad when it came to traveling. Too bad it wasn't flipped because it is easier to get around things by yourself and in a Camry vs. what you were driving. Glad to hear you made it safely. Talk to you over the weekend.

    Your FSILINC

  3. Glad you made it to Il. My son told me of the horrid roads in Indiaia and Ill as he traveled to Maine this summer. Hope the rest of the way is construction free.