Pardon the interruption, friends. Yellowstone doesn’t have a lot of wireless access points (nor cell towers to tether through) and we were too busy taking in the crazy-amazing sights to write anyway.
The day we got to Yellowstone really had me worried. We drove in through flurries and with five and six foot plowed drifts lining either side of the road. I knew it was going to be cold, I even thought there might still be some snow around, but I hadn’t expected active snowing nor overnight temperatures as low as I guessed they might be to keep the big lakes frozen. Being that it was only our third night in the RV, and our first night of “dry camping” without water or electric hookup, I was worried about all kinds of things: Would we freeze overnight? Would the black and gray-water tanks over-fill on me? Would the roads be “easy” in the inclement weather?
We not only survived the night, we thrived; refining our supper, evening, bedtime, and morning routines. Speaking of routines, I’ll devote a paragraph here to how most days thus far are seeming to go.
Most mornings we wake around 7:30am and are pulling out of the campsite just before 10am. That usually includes a shower for Sharaun or I (we are currently alternating mornings, for no good reason), breakfast for everyone, dishes, something I’ve started calling “road readying,” and whatever else needs to happen before I can hit the gas. We’ve been doing lunch a little later than normal, around 1pm or whenever the stopping is convenient. Dinner is later too, as we typically don’t get into the next campground until 6:30pm. That’ll change once we have our first multi-night stay at the same place (in Yellowstone I had us hopping around multiple campgrounds at all ends of the park in an effort to see as much as we could). Other than that we’re working out the optimal storage places for the things we use most, and finding good spots to tuck away this and that for “going” and “stopped” use. I’d say we’re adapting well.
As for the RV, I think we’ve mostly figured it out. The one thing that still confuses me is the seeming sensitivity of the water-level indicators. Unless you’re on super-level ground it’s hard to get a read on how much black and/or gray water you’re holding. Oh, and yeah, the first time I dumped the tanks I totally got it all over me. Like… a torrent of wastewater. I capped it quickly and recovered, however. What they call the “coach batter” seems to be holding up really well, while dry camping we’ve run the furnace overnight with only minimal loss of charge. Once we’re on the road the engine recharges it but even the solar trickle-charge seems seems to rebuild amperage quick enough once the sun is up (before 6am these days).
Believe it or not, the thing feels roomy, and as a motor vehicle it handles really well on the road. At the helm I’ve become much more confident in the steering and “lane alignment” tricks. Turning was a bit of a learning curve, but once you have a feel for the “center” of the length of the beast it becomes as simple as turning a car. Backing it up is easy with Sharaun’s guidance from outside to ensure we’re obstacle-free. Using the generator while driving allows us 120V power to do things like charge camera batteries or have on a on-the-road crockpot meal ready when we arrive at our overnight stops.
In Yellowstone we’ve run into multiple other Cruise America renters and exchanged words with a few of them, most seem to agree the experience has been positive. We’re still early in our cross-country jaunt, but so-far, so-good.
There’s a lot more I could write, and I will at some point… but for now it’s time to get going again and spend another day in the park. I’m going to attempt to find an open wireless spot in Mammoth Hot Springs to post this and a new video from Keaton. Until later, take care!