A man and his dog in the desert, and a truck camper made by hand

Thursday,February 26 (continued)

Having crossed the Mojave Desert from Desert Center, California, to Parker, Arizona, Bridget and I are on the last leg of the day’s travel.  We’re on Highway 95 tracing the east bank of the Colorado River, going north toward Lake Havasu City.  The road curves around rock cliffs and the traffic is fast.

That’s when I see them for only a moment . . .

Seven bighorn sheep in single file, picking their way along the side of a cliff not far from the road!

Oh, I wish I could pull over for a photo.  The road is only two lanes and I can’t even slow down to enjoy the sight.  Wow!  That’s not something you see every day!

Note:  If interested in the historical waterhole projects for bighorn sheep, plus photos, click this link: “Arizona Desert Bighorn Sheep Society.” 

From the information Rusty sent me in an email, I know we’re approaching his camp.

I drive up a dirt road that might be the one I’m looking for.  A jeep comes toward us. I ask about the condition of the road and the guy says it isn’t good all the way.

By now it’s 2:30 and Bridget and I haven’t eaten since breakfast.  I park on the side of the road, go back to the Best Little Trailer and pull out the rotisserie chicken I bought at Wal-Mart.  We enjoy a quick lunch and I email Rusty from my laptop while sitting in the Perfect Tow Vehicle.

“You’re close!” he responds.

Shortly thereafter I drive up Rusty’s road and he  comes running down the road to greet us.  We hug and then Rusty climbs into the passenger seat for the short ride back to his camp.

Timber trots excitedly on his tether at our arrival.

1-P1020987Rusty is anxious to show me his camper and I’m anxious to see it!

1-P1020990“See the fiberglass on the side?”  Rusty asks.  “I haven’t painted it yet.”

I notice his Wilson antenna for internet signal is on a pole attached behind the passenger door.  It telescopes above the cab-over and swings flat against the camper’s side when retracted.

1-P1030017 “That’s a hundred-watt solar panel on top,” Rusty points out proudly.  “I have 173-watts altogether.”

Timber is going crazy at having visitors.

I greet him and try to stroke him, but he jumps and runs and barks at Bridget.  Bridget stays at my side.  She’s alarmed by this big dog jumping near me.  She puts on her scariest face and bares her teeth.  She snarls her fiercest snarl and barks her most intimidating barks.

Timber hardly notices.

I admire the work that Rusty has completed so far as he explains how he puts the fiberglass on with a brush and smooths it across with a cloth.

“See that?  That’s the intake for the water tank.” (The white rectangle behind the driver’s window.)

1-P1030018The waste tank outflow will be on the driver’s side (below), once Rusty finishes installing his bathroom.  (It’s not easy to see in this photo.  I’ll be posting more photos of Rusty’s camper in an upcoming post.)

1-P1030019The back-end of the camper is almost completely painted to match the upper part of the truck. 

Rusty is considering paint colors and has not made a final decision yet.  He shows me how he can stand up inside his home without having to stoop.

“It’s six and a half feet tall and six and a half feet wide.  I can lie down in my bed and stretch out.”  He grins.

I set up camp in a turn-around nearby.

Our camp is next to a palo verde tree.  When I’m finished setting up a basic camp, Rusty and Timber come over.  We have a lot of catching up to do!

I become aware of the diminishing light.

“Just a minute, Rusty. I need to take some photos before dark.”

In the photo below, I haven’t put down the jacks or raised the antenna pole yet. There isn’t enough light on the door side for a good photo right now.

1-P1020991The “golden hour” arrives.  I take this photo of the view from our front door.

1-P1020993Rusty and I watch the sunset together.

I hasten across the desert to include the tree below in a sunset scene.

1-P1020999We say goodnight early and go inside our respective campers.

I’m tired!  It’s been a very full day and  Bridget and I sleep well.

Friday, February 27

1-P1030015Friday is Rusty’s day to go into Lake Havasu City to replenish supplies.

He and Timber leave early in the morning.

Before leaving, Rusty puts the flag in the tree at his camp and sets out his chair and propane tank. He does this to hold claim on his campsite.

Rusty tells me about the time he left his camp and, when he returned, someone was occupying it.  He’s glad Bridget and I are here to ward off a possible clinger to both our camps.

After breakfast, Bridget and I go for a walk.

Not far from our campsite, I stop and turn to take a photo. Bridget is in one of her obstinate moods. She turns also and heads back to camp.

“Bridget!  Where are you going?  C’mon!  Let’s walk together!”

There she goes, ignoring my plea.

(She’s in the bottom right of the photo below.)

1-P1030005“Well, darnit, I’m going without you then.”

I know she will wait by the door of the BLT until I return.

1-P1030006Low hills lie behind our camps.  I walk up one of them.

1-P1030007From the top of the hill, I take the next photo. 

You can see the PTV and BLT on the right side.  In the middle background is a sliver of blue.  That’s the Colorado River on the other side of Highway 95.

1-P1030009Below are the Whipple Mountains in California, beyond the river.

1-P1030002And the Aubrey Hills to the northwest on the Arizona side of the river . . . .

1-P1030004Rusty and Timber return a few hours later.

“I bought some pistachio and almond ice cream,” Rusty announces with a big smile on his face as he hurries to our door.  “Can you keep it in your freezer for me?”


NOTE:  From reader comments I’ve become aware of the interest in Rusty’s camper build.  In the excitement of our reunion, I didn’t acquire details of the project and only took the few photos shown in this post.  Bridget and I will stay here through the changing weather that is in the forecast.  I’ll post more about the camper as time goes along and according to Rusty’s wishes.




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131 Responses to A man and his dog in the desert, and a truck camper made by hand

  1. Lee J in Northern California says:

    Great to meet up with your friends!

  2. Linda Rose & the 4 M's says:

    Yay Rusty and Timber. I love his story too. Hoping you will have more pictures of them later. Have a good visit!!
    Linda and the cuddle pups

  3. Marsha/MI says:

    It’s nice that you’re able to stay in touch with Rusty and Timber.

  4. Bill&Ann-North Carolina says:

    Good post.

  5. Calvin R (Ohio) says:

    That’s a fascinating camper. Does Rusty (or anyone) know where I can learn the basics of fiberglass work?

    • BadgerRickInWis says:

      Calvin, not exactly what you asked about but below is a link to a DIY camper project that caught my eye.

      • Calvin R (Ohio) says:

        Thanks. It looks like he posted the entire construction process in good detail. I’m reading the System Three book right now, but I have this bookmarked and will read it as soon as I can.

    • Sidewinder Pen says:

      Quite a few home-built (and some commercial as well) boats are built of epoxy and fiberglass covered plywood. So forums covering that have a wealth of information and folks doing it.

      WEST System (one maker of epoxy) and System Three (another) also both put out very informative booklets for their products which would also apply to epoxy in general (not just those brands).

      Just as a quick glossary, you have “fiberglass,” which is the cloth or reinforcement you use. It comes in various weaves and weights and etc. Then you have “resin,” which is the liquid you saturate the cloth with (and/or coat plywood with). It can be polyester, vinylester, or epoxy. Vinylester and epoxy are usually considered superior, but polyester has held many a boat together. I like to use epoxy myself.

      Then you have a core or structure material (not always used). This can be plywood (which may be the actual structure, and then the cloth/resin is more of a coating), or wood or foam as a core (holding two layers of fiberglass apart for lightweight strength – also known as cored construction). Fiberglass alone (just cloth and resin) can also be used to make smaller parts, although it is actually rather floppy unless super thick/heavy, so coring or a base structure is used for larger flatter areas to keep them stiff.

      I haven’t been to them lately, but I think Duckworks and Messing About in Boats both have forums of folks building ply/epoxy boats. Or there are books such as “Instant Boatbuilding.” The booklets I mentioned from WEST System and System Three are both available for free viewing or download from their respective sites.

    • Timber n' me says:

      I learned off of YouTube how to mix the Resin to be able to paint it on , then lay the fiber cloth and smooth it with a plastic wide blade, then re- resin to seal. I did most of the roof and the passengers side in one day, but it took a week to dry and I had to vent the camper while sleeping, the fumes are strong. the cab over took 1/2 day, and I painted it with high gloss enamel, but I’m not going to re-paint till all the glassing is done. ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,me

      • Chuck says:

        Hi Rusty and Timber!!!! Glad to see you got together with Sue n Bridget! Like your truck and camper!

      • Calvin R (in Ohio) says:

        Thanks, Rusty! I’ve been watching YouTube videos along with reading that book. The book is tough reading but has a lot of information. I would have a big advantage because I’ll probably be living indoors while I build mine if I go that way. I still need to figure out sizes for the plywood and framework or decide I can afford foam-core or whatever.

        I looked at the Glen-L site but I would probably do better to just make my own sketches and things because I don’t really want the models they’re selling and it’s easier for me to start from scratch.

  6. So glad you found Rusty and Timber. They look so happy to be back camping. Looks like a great site to camp. Enjoy!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Judy L.,

      Rusty has come to this campsite for many years. I can see why he does. It’s away from the dust of OHVers and jeepers, and it’s quiet at night, far away from the highway.

  7. As someone who is DEFINITELY a DIYer, I can really appreciate what Rusty is accomplishing. It’s not high-dollar, but it doesn’t need to be. And it’s “home”. That’s all that matters. Heck, I’m working on a remodel of the bedroom in our Bounder almost as I’m writing this. Just taking a break.:)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Ed,

      Did you notice how the camper top is shaped for good aerodynamics? Yes, there’s a lot of work in this camper and more that Rusty plans to do.

      Hope your remodel is going well.

  8. Chris says:

    What happened to Rusty’s house and furnishings?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Chris,

      Rusty’s home that he occupied through the VA was tested by the health department and other agencies and found to be unfit for habitation due to mold within the walls. The mold was making Rusty ill.

      Immediately upon this development (he was given a deadline to be out of the mobile home), Rusty began construction of a new camper on the same 1975 Ford truck that held his former camper (painted camouflage) which he had made. That camper had a wood stove in it. His new camper has a propane stove…. water tank, waste tank, sewer outlet, sink, bathroom are being installed. Eventually he will also put in a small refrigerator.

      Rusty kept all the items that he had use for in his new camper. What he couldn’t take with him he made sure those things were given to vets who could put them to good use. His neighbor bought his trains.

  9. AJ says:

    Tell Rusty that his camper looks great.
    Always nice to have room to stretch out. Being 6 foot, not many small campers have space for me to fit, so I appreciate his design details…

    Enjoy your visit!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, AJ,

      Rusty will see your comment, if he hasn’t already. 🙂 Rusty couldn’t stand up straight in his former camper, nor could he stretch out on his bed. He put a lot of thought into the design of this new camper.

      He has made detailed drawings of the bathroom that he’s working on these days.

    • Timber n' me says:

      AJ, Rusty here, I went on line and bought full-sized camper plans from Glenn L.com and modified them, didn’t want a long hang over on the cab over, but the camper is as wide as tall, 6′ 6″ and only weighs 850 and cost a fraction of a new one, framing with outside covering and insolation, $550. and I ‘m using the All-Clad cooking pot that Mick sent as a house warming gift back when we moved into the bad black molded house as a Sink, I’d never have had any one over to cook for, so I got a Idea from GOD to use it as a SINK and it’s working great, just right for us as a sink, round dishes, round sink.,,,,,, the port-ta-potty a blogger sent me is leaking and it can not be sent back, so I have a Thetford toilet, all the fittings , a tank, ( holding), coming in the mail, and all I need to get next week is 2 hole saws and 2 ft. of 3″ and 7 ft. of 1-1/2″ ABS pipe , then we’ll be set up like most RV’s and use a hose to dump. then on to putting in a drain in the sink, finish glassing, get a tire and do the brakes, then paint and after that,,,,,,,, Life’s like a High Way, we’ll be a driving but not all night long, like the Country & Western Singer sings, in fact , I don’t drive at night at all. ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,me

  10. Pauline in Mississippi says:

    So glad you met up with Rusty and Timber. He certainly has worked hard on his camper. Do you remember the camper that Dad made? He started with just a trailer bed. It worked for them!!!
    Pictures are always great. Love the sunset. The picture of the flag at Rusty’s campsite is a wonderful sight. Good for Rusty!!!
    Love to you and Bridget

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Pauline,

      Judy L., Horn Lake, MS (above) commented under the previous post that she is from Corinth and her mother was born and raised in Rienzi. I was going to email you about that, but your comment here saved me the trouble. 🙂

      That flag of Rusty’s used to fly from the pole at his mobile home in Chino Valley, AZ.

      Yes, I remember that camper that Dad built. He was so handy.

      Love you, too!

  11. Shirlene says:

    Good Morning Again Sue, are those other camper out there with you, in one of your pictures from the top of the hill I see a couple of other rigs…but I guess you have just enough of what you need to make you happy…that and a good friend in Rusty and of course Timber….Happy and wonderful campfires for you guys…Thanks for the pictures of Rusty’s camper…he is doing such a good job…freedom = happiness. Tell Bridget to CHILL, things will be fine…love to you guys.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Shirlene,

      Yes, there are other campers out here, spread out on this road. Rusty and I are on a spur off the dirt road which is good — no one drives by. I can hear the generator of another camper for a couple hours each day, in the morning and early evening. I don’t eat outside because of that. I close up the windows and door and stay inside when it’s on. After living so much without human-made noise, I’m overly sensitive to it. I knew before coming here that I’d have to tolerate certain things prevalent in any popular area. I wish everyone relied on solar power!

      Good morning to you, too.

  12. DebsJourney says:

    Hi Sue,
    Most enjoyable post today. Looks like a visit with a old friend will be a happy time.
    Rusty’s new home is looking fantastic. He deserves to have comfort and it looks like he does. What a big accomplishment for … anyone. 🙂 Timber looks spry too.
    As for me Im in a good place today It”s raining out but yesterday I had a yard sale and made just about $400 🙂 Someone is coming to see my trailer in a hour and if they buy it I will have made 3000.00 on it and will find the one a bit bigger after all
    If not I’ll make the best of the one I have… all things seem to work out someway specially if we keep busy doing the right things.
    loved the sunset with the tree
    hugs Deb

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Deb,

      Great to read your newsy comment…Congratulations on the successful yard sale!

      Good things are coming your way and you sound upbeat. 🙂 Yes, you’re right. “All things seem to work out some way specially if we keep busy doing the right things.” I hope the person coming to look at your trailer decides to buy it, but if not, someone else will. Keep in touch…

      • DebsJourney says:

        I sold the trailer! I am please to have enjoyed it so much and learned so much. Now I’m ready to get exactly what I need. Feeling a lot better. 🙂

        • debsjourney says:

          hi again,
          unfortunately for me the deal with my trailer fell through. Got a call this morning they changed their mind. Oh well back to the drawing board as they say.

    • BadgerRickInWis says:

      Thanks for keeping us updated and congrats on the successful yard sale Deb, Also good luck on the trailer sale. To be able to have used it and learned what would work better for you and STILL turn a profit is blessings on top of blessings. You continue to amaze me with your strength and determination.

  13. JanisP in Ecuador says:

    You CAN see the river! (OK, with some effort) I like Rusty’s new camper…it must give him tons more space! I assume his bed is over the cab? Can’t wait to see some interior photos, if he doesn’t mind showing it off. Love that sunset photo with the bare tree.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Yes, Rusty’s bed is over the cab. He has a little table which works also as a computer station. He’s not finished with the interior…

      Thanks for noting the tree-in-the-sunset photo…

  14. Monica- CA says:

    Such a rewarding project designing and constructing your own home! Rusty, your camper looks awesome. Timber looks very happy, the views are stunning, and Ms. Bridget is justly cantankerousness for her age. Enjoy your visit and safe travels!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Monica,

      Bridget is protective of me. She’ll get over it… Today is chilly and overcast. We haven’t been out to visit Rusty and Timber. I gave Rusty some movies on DVDs yesterday (he has a player), just in time for the change in weather.

  15. weather says:

    What an exciting post,Gosh what a treat,thanks!No lunch by 2:30 pm,running on fumes because of not wanting to take time out from what’s feeling good-hm-m ,hard to resist sometimes.I far too often do the same thing,and know it’s frowned upon-I’m just glad to enjoy life so much that living it puts the “shoulds” on a back burner at times.It’s obvious that’s exactly what you’re were doing.

    Rusty,Timber and their home look great.I love using what’s available to make do for what we want.He’s made a real art out of doing that,and it all works!His formula for life is certainly proved right by the fruit in the results.I feel like clapping for all of you.

    Bridget has her mind made up and knows what she likes and needs,boy,I admire and enjoy that about her.I know she can be frustrating,we all can be and are-since I’m not the one putting up with it ,guess I get more pleasure out of that trait she has than you do 🙂 She has it made because you love her through it all.

    Glad you now are settled where you can ease off on rushing,moving,lots of necessary errands and chores for a bit.Ah-h-time to do (or not do) anything in particular,kick back,visit if you feel like it,meander …nice that Rusty gets your needs and you both go with the flow so well.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi weather,

      I have the kind of appetite that is “on” all the time. It’s rare for me to lose track of lunchtime. As you described, I was enjoying life so much that lunch wasn’t thought of. Imagine seeing from our moving vehicle, a herd of bighorn sheep in their natural habitat! I love the surprises one comes upon while traveling.

      Once Bridget sets her mind to something, there’s no point in trying to change it. Sometimes she’s eager for a walk; other times she balks. I have to “go with the flow” when dealing with the Bridge. It takes too much energy to do otherwise! Oh, she does get on my nerves at times. That goes along with anyone with a strong personality.

      Yes, Rusty is a very resourceful person. He can see multiple uses for items many would discard as useless. We can learn from him. I did get everything we need, except I forgot to have the propane tanks filled. I think I have enough to go for a few days…

    • BadgerRickInWis says:

      Your post reminds me of a song I saw performed by a local folk singer called “Don’t Should On Me And I Won’t Should On You.” 🙂

  16. Karen LeMoine says:

    I’m glad you guys have a chance to hookup for a visit. I think Rusty will be happy in his new home and back on the road! Timber looks great!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Karen,

      I’m delighted to see you here! Welcome…. Yes, Rusty and Timber look happy. Rusty is sporting a desert tan!

  17. BadgerRickInWis says:

    This whole post just has me smiling from ear to ear. I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to see Rusty and Timber looking so well and so happy. That smile on Timber’s face says it all.

    Then HRH doing her best to protect her Queen from another dog and returning to the BLT to stand guard at the castle. She takes her job so seriously and does it so well. 🙂

    I of course have lots of questions about Rusty’s camper. I assume that he started with a wooden frame (2×2’s?) and than covered it in fiberglass panels and taped the seams with fiberglass tape. Is this correct? Did he place the windows in a frame using butyl tape? Where did he find the windows? What did he use for the water and waste tanks and how large are they? I’m looking forward to seeing more pics and if Rusty is comfortable with it (and only if) I would love to see the inside.

    Rusty I know you will read this and you should be so very proud. You have created a wonderful home for you and Timber and carved out a life that brings you both joy. Hard to think of a more perfect answer to the meaning of life.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Maybe Rusty will write a comment explaining more about the construction of his camper. I believe he said the windows were given to him. The window on the back door is the same window he had on his previous camper.

    • Timber n' me says:

      Badger Rick, The side walls, 1x2s, 1x3s and 4s and 6s cover’d with 1/8th hardwood ply with hardboard foam inbetween, the rest is 2x2s, the sweep back of the cab-over has 1/8th H B ply in and out and just above the cab and be hind the cab is 3/8s ply over 2x2s, the back also and the roof is 1/4 ply over 2x2s beams and I was told that it wont hold up to the wind or the weather. WANNA BET? ,,,,,,,,,,,, He don’t know how I put it together, Brass Dry Wall Screws and the best dam waterproof glue one could buy, better than the Gorilla junk. ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,me

  18. AZ Jim says:

    Hi to Rusty and Timber! Looks like his home is coming right along! Congratulation Rusty!!

    Missy this is a link to an amazing sight, one I can hardly believe. The video was taken in New Zealand. I am sure it will shock our fellow Blogorinos in a good way.


  19. Cinandjules (NY) says:

    Great scenery and great company!

    Silly Bridgee….your description of her nastiest snarl made me chuckle! Good girl Bridgee!

    Rusty and Timber look great! He remembers the limitations in his old camper and has made modifications to make it a palace! The camper looks great! Great job Rusty!

    Pistachio almond ice cream for desert…..enjoy!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Rusty came over a few minutes ago to pick up his carton of pistachio ice cream. The sky has cleared up and is blue with a few white clouds, a very breezy day, the kind where it’s cozy inside.

  20. JanisP in Ecuador says:

    Me again. I have been wondering, and I can’t find any stats, but how many followers do you have? Must be thousands!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You can’t find the number because it’s not available. My statistics were messed up at one point. One place says I have 489 followers at present and another place says I have over 35,000. I suspect the correct number is somewhere in between. I don’t care about the numbers, as long as there’s life on my blog.

  21. Karen -SC says:

    Hi Sue and Bridget, I am babysitting my 4 year old granddaughter Brooklynn this afternoon. I’ve just come home from trailer shopping with my husband and eating out for lunch. This will now be # 4 RV. I have to get this right as it will be my last purchase. Brooklynn just loves your photos. She let out a little girl squeal when she saw those beautiful pictures of the mountains and your trailer. She is sitting next to me on her little pony. She keeps wanting to move the cursor on my laptop to see the photos. I of course am trying to read your post. I must say I’ve never shared reading your post with anyone. Lots of fun for sure. Also I have my husband and daughter now shopping through your Amazon. He just ordered a new Kindle and power plug. I know every bit helps. Glad to see you meeting up with Rusty and Timber. I know will have some special time together. Say hi for me.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Your love of your granddaughter comes through your comment, Karen. I’m glad she’s a fan! I bet she’s a cutie.

      Thanks to all for ordering Amazon products here. I do appreciate the income that provides me.

  22. Dedra says:

    So great to hear from and about Rusty and Timber again.
    Both are looking really good and enjoying life more.
    I think Rusty and Timber enjoy the RV life more than the stationary life?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Rusty has been a traveling man most of his life. That’s a difficult thing to stop… He and Timber seem happy and content. Nice hearing from you again, Dedra.

  23. PookieBoy in houston says:

    HA….I had to laugh at Bridget…..these dogs have a mind of their own dont they? My Pookie does the same thing when I walk down to the mail box he sometimes turns around half way down and goes bact to the porch…
    great post and looking forward to more posts on Rusty….
    I have a cab over camper but its mounted on a little trailer…
    PS…..after some reading of Louis L’amour Im sure i can see a lonely rider up in them thar hills!

  24. Lisa W says:

    Thank you for posting about meeting up with Rusty and Timber again. I am sure that Timber and Bridget are getting along today, it just took the Bridge a little while to get used to a boy and his exuberance. Have fun hanging out with them.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Lisa W.,

      You’re right. Bridget and Timber would never have a real fight. They simply aren’t compatible. As long as they respect each other’s personal space,which they do, they’re fine.

  25. weather says:

    Hi Sue,W.L.H.Moon went back on the road after 25 yrs.,wrote a “sequel” to Blue Highways.I thought if you don’t have it already,you might want to treat yourself while ordering from Amazon because they have it there.

    • weather says:

      oops,should have included it’s title Roads to Quoz (:An American Mosey)

    • edlfrey says:

      I’m not sure that I would classify “Writing Blue Highways” as a sequel. It is a follow-up to William Least Heat-Moon’s best-selling Blue Highways in which he reflects on the journey and talks about writing, publishing, personal relationships, and many other aspects that went into writing the book.

      I continue to believe that PrairyErth was his best book, that is just me however. I never liked “On the Road” by Jack Kerouac either but it and “Blue Highways” are de rigueur reading for RVers and RVer wannabes.

      • weather says:

        Thanks,Ed,I’ll take a look at PrairyErth on your recommendation.And,as is usually the case,you’re right ,using follow -up is more precise than the lazier placing quotation marks around sequel ,as I did.The merit in reading Road to Quoz would be simply if one enjoys the author,his writing and quality of mind in my estimation.But then,I wouldn’t turn my nose up at the idea of wearing foot covering for more enjoyable walking -even if it were considered merely a de riqueur affectation among sojourning folk , either 😉 so what do I know?I always enjoy the input you bring to the table.

        • weather says:

          It appears that Ed and I both missed that fact that we were talking about two entirely different books .Ha!What a ridiculous way to confuse us all!

          • edlfrey says:

            I guess “Roads to Quoz ” could be considered a “sequel” to “Blue Highways” it does have travel as the basic focus but it was published in 2008.

            He also had “Here, There, Elsewhere” published in 2013 that was a compilation of travel articles that had been previously published in magazines.

            I thought you were writing about his most recently released book “Writing Blue Highways”.

            • weather says:

              Readers of the magazines must have felt let down when the articles stopped being there.Socrates In the City,a show with author interviews,went off the air for a while and Friday nights at 8 felt like they had a hole in them.Nice to have mental stimulation one enjoys,glad we had the mix-up,gives me more to look at 🙂

          • Blue Highways? I thought I remembered the title as Blue Line Highways! Because he followed the blue line highways on his map! Maybe I’m wrong about the name though! William Least Heat Moon wrote that wonderful book that I read so many times I believe the ink faded right off the pages! Good to know there us a sequel out there now, or at the very least, a second book by him! Thanks for the heads up on this!

            • weather says:

              Check any of his titles on Amazon through Sue’s link and below you’ll find everything he’s written,on all formats available at affordable prices.Happy reading!

            • Y’all were right on! I went to Amazon and It WAS titled as Blue Highways! Remembered it wrong all these 30+ years! I even made it a point in my earlier explorations of America to visit some of the same towns he went through! My favorite two were Dimebox and Old Dimebox Texas! Great book and worth the read!

            • Chas Anderson says:

              His book Riverhorse is also good.Details his journey by small boat from the Atlantic to the Pacific via Hudson,erie Canal,Lake Erie,Ohio River,Mississippi,missouri,snake, Columbia and several I missed.
              He did it with only a couple of small portages.

            • Thanks for the suggestion!

  26. Jolene/Iowa says:

    This just makes my heart happy. Rusty and Timber are such a neat story and it is neat that you are able to still meet up with them. He has done a great job on his camper!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Jolene,

      I’m sure it pleases Rusty very much to see all these positive reactions to the work he is doing making his home how he wants it and with no leaks!

  27. Applegirl NY says:

    Hi Sue and Blogorinos! Oh Sue, I’m so excited for your visit with Rusty and Timber. Can’t wait to hear more about his camper. I am amazed at what people can do. He’s so talented.

    We’ve been camping in Florida for 2 weeks now. It’s been cold and damp, but we’ve been enjoying our first outing in our Casita and have been spending loads of time walking on the beach and checking out all of the birds. So happy we’re not up north. We’ll be heading to Ameilia Island tomorrow morning. That should be a lovely campground.

    It will be a week or so before I have a chance to catch up on all of your travels over the last couple of weeks. WiFi is limited, and I’ve been so happy to spend time outside, I haven’t actively sought out internet.

    My best to everyone!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Applegirl!

      So good to hear from you! I figured you were enjoying Florida after such a long wait. You probably won’t see this for a while which is okay… Have fun!

      I hope you see lots of birds on Amelia Island… such a pretty area. Thanks for getting in touch with us. I’m very happy for you!

  28. Glenda in OZ! says:

    Isn’t Rusty the most ingenious man? So pleased that you both have caught up with each other and can spend this time renewing your acquaintance. Good for us readers too to see how Rusty and Timber are faring. Good luck to you both. Loving the desert photos!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Glenda. I’m pleased you like the photos… Gorgeous sunset a few minutes ago …. Hope all is well in your part of the world. 🙂

  29. Betty Shea says:

    So happy you are with good old pals,it surely is the most precious times !!
    Bridget has a mind of her own

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Betty Shea,

      Bridget is going to do what Bridget is going to do. Everybody else … step aside! Ha!

  30. Marcia GB in MA says:

    So good to see Rusty and Timber looking well and happy. He has done a great job on the truck camper and when it’s finished it will certainly be a nice cosy home for the two of them. It’s always a treat to catch up with old friends, isn’t it, Sue. Take good care!

  31. Delightful to see Rusty and Timber looking so good! Looks like a great spot too. So smart to put the door on one side, giving him a much wider area – for his bed I’m guessing. The four of you will have a great timing catching up – and ice cream!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Actually the area to the side of the door is going to be the bathroom. Rusty’s bed is over the cab.

  32. Hugs to Rusty and belly rubs to Timber!!! Good yo see y’all again! The camper looks like a dream come true for you Rusty! Is the truck holding up good for you too ???
    Hi Sue and hugs to you and Bridget too! Beautiful photos as always! Thanks for sharing Rusty and Timber with us! Always good to see smiling faces pasted on friends!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Geri,

      There are a lot of people who care about Rusty and Timber. It’s my pleasure to share our friendship. Thanks on the pics… Love ya!

  33. Val R. Lakefield On. says:

    Hi Sue, How nice you are getting to visit Rusty & Timber again. I enjoyed seeing them again in photos. What a good job Rusty has done on his camper. Have a wonderful visit with them.

  34. Lynn Brooks says:


  35. MarciainPA says:

    Rusty, you are amazing!!! Such quality work for a passion of yours. You and Timber are two lucky dogs!! You are always in our hearts.

  36. UPCDebra says:

    Wish I had been following the crew when Timber was found. I could have flown to pick him up and then flown with him to Rusty. Glad it all worked out. I’m hooked on “Rosemary and Thyme,” a sweet British who done it that takes place in the gorgeous gardens on England and around Europe. The hero of this episode reminded me of your need for a new crew member. Hope you can watch it free on you tube. https://m.youtube.com/#/watch?list=PLkq7oHUcA_W0swCPTsNpQIrgM8jzvnmGh&v=PEXn8fS4ne0

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, UPCDebra,

      Thanks for the link. I can’t watch it. I’ve opened up youtube several times during this billing period… Time to conserve my data usage.

  37. Mert in Kentucky says:

    Hi Sue and Bridget too
    It’s a blast from the past. I have still kept up with your writings and adventures, I just have not been commenting. Love your alls camp. And love rusty and timbers new home. I love it!! It looks so peaceful there.
    I tell you, it has been awful here. 15″ of snow in 24 hrs last week, along with ice on top of that and below zero weather. Snow and Ice still on ground. I feel like a very bad Dorothy hammell (sp) skater I not!and to top it all off, main water lins al over area froze and broke, so with all the snow they could not find the leaks. So we were all without water for 7 days. Plus with the entire county water shut off. You were lucky to find any water to buy. It was an absolute nightmare! Water back on now. Still cold, but up in the 20’s now during the day. Have I mentioned I hate winter??!!!??;)
    I will stop back by soon. Glad all is well, and still praying you find the new member of the family soon.
    Hello all blogorinos. Freezing cheers from frozen Kentucky 🙂
    Mert and Asia Mae.

    • Mert in Kentucky says:

      Please ignore all missing letters. All my fingers and both thumbs are froze too and cracked open from the cold and so dry. Hurts to talk lol

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Mert! So good to see you here again!

      Gosh, you have gone through an “absolute nightmare.” No water for a week, only in the twenties during the day, all that snow. . . I hope you have adequate heat in your home and that your family is okay.

      I wondered how you and Asia Mae were… Thanks for letting us know. May Spring arrive early this year!

      • Mert in Kentucky says:

        Everyone is as well as we can be 🙂 thank you!! Please spring … I welcome you!

        • Mert in Kentucky says:

          And ty, yes plenty of heat. If not I would have been southbound with mom and pop 😉

  38. DebbieT says:

    Loving the exuberant pups…. they always make me smile. Somehow, I’ve missed Rusty’s transition from his new home back into the camper – I’ve searched the blog, but can’t seem to locate it….. link me up perhaps? Thanks again for providing such a nice window into your life!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, DebbieT,

      There isn’t a post about Rustys transition to his truck camper because I wasn’t at his home during the time he had to move out and I write about what I experience from where I am at the time. There isn’t more to know other than what I wrote in a reply to Chris(above, about the 10th person down).

  39. weather says:

    Funny how when the world sounds wrong for awhile the slightest note of what’s normal is so restorative.At sunrise the birds wintering here were calling each other out to enjoy wee changes.Less strong wind,slightly warmer temps and out they come from shelters to sing and play-made me feel like twirling.Hope similar things come near you,Sue.I know it can be a bit off at a “more populated than you like to be in” place.I winced a little when I read of the generator noise you avoid by staying inside.

    Sometimes you mention living with only nature’s sounds, being easily disturbed by civilization’s noise as though that’s a lessened ability to tolerate.I think being that way is the height of true health and we’ve just adapted to less when we had to.The few times in my life that I stayed where I couldn’t hear wind or water I listened to storm and ocean tapes to calm down.I’ve always had birds in my home for the same reason.

    We mentioned recently how wind becomes part of us,like breath and our own heart beat are.One only becomes aware of it when it’s missing, if they’ve been that way since childhood ,I guess.Anyhoo…however one looks at that type of thing ,my wish is for you to hold catch a break,have a moment of wonder

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, weather,

      I agree with you (of course!) about sensitivity to noise being a sign of health, of a nervous system that is running on “calm” instead of on a frequency of “frantic.”

      When I taught middle schoolers, each group of 30 wound-up pre-teens would regularly enter my classroom in a state of chaos and nervous energy, not at all suitable for concentration.

      I purchased a nature sounds CD (in fact, I still have it with me, but don’t need it anymore, having the real thing). I would play that CD as they entered and during the math “warm-up” segment prior to starting the lesson.

      At first they chattered about the sounds, mimicked for attention like adolescents tend to do, made silly jokes, etc. After a few experiences, they began to absorb what they heard and those nature sounds soothed them as words or actions on my part rarely could.

      Rusty told me around sunset last night that he thinks the generator man is leaving soon as evidenced by the guy packing up stuff. I haven’t heard the generator this morning. . . . Hope he does leave! The sound of motors carries over the desert, much like it does over water.

      As for wind here, it comes and goes. The sky is what I’ve heard described as ‘brooding.’ It may clear up– often that happens over the desert– as we’ve been told rain was going to come two days ago. None yet!

      The birds are singing again at your place… Birdsong inside and out…That’s good. I know you love that!

  40. Please say HI to Rusty and Timber for me… I think of him often and wonder how he is doing! I showed my hubby Steve the pics of Rusty’s work on his RV and he was very impressed. A labor of love and an expression of creativity. You go, Rusty!!!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, KarenInTheWoods and Steveio,

      Rusty will probably see your message here. Nice of you to congratulate him on his efforts with a cheer. 🙂

  41. Ron in Tx says:

    Your post are always entertaining and I look forward to them daily.

    Rusty your camper looks great. I built one when I was delivering travel trailers out of Elk hart Ind . I put 325 thousand miles on mine and then gave it to my my sister in law
    who is still using it, so with care they will last a long time.
    Just a couple things you probably already know but I will post them just in case you don’t.
    uscomposites has resin cloth and everything you need in the way of fiberglass supplies much cheaper than anywhere else I have found and are great folks to do business with. I used there products to build 15 different kayaks so I can recommend them.
    Epoxy and poly resin will not hold up in sunlight ,they are not uv tolerant so get the paint on your camper as soon as possible. Putting a coat of epoxy inside and out on your ply will triple the strength.
    One more thing make sure you keep the drain hole open in te bed of your truck so the bottom of the camper stays dry and doesn’t stand in water.
    I hope the readers will excuse my grammar it isn’t my strong point
    Rusty welcome home brother and thank you for your service.

    • Timber n' me says:

      Hi Ron, I spoke with a few Fiber glass Boat Builders and repair, they told me as long as it’s cool in temps, the resin should be ok, the sun + heat will hurt, but paint before it gets above 100 degrees. I don’t camp in super hot weather, I leave the River area come April and return the end of October, I love thE tall hills,( 7,000 – 13,000 ft.) I’m a Sunbird, like a Snowbird. ,,,Thanks for your advice, I’ll keep it in mind. Welcome Home Bro ,,,,,,,,,,,,me

      • Timber n' me says:

        Oh, I have my drain water going to a small tank and when I get the 5 gallon black holding tank in, all will be hook up like a regular setup like on RVs, only smaller. I don’t worry bout water in the truck bed, there are holes in the front and back and all the wood in this camper has been treated 4 times prier to construction from top to bottom, ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,me,

        • WTXCal says:

          Great job Rusty! You and Timber both look good and happy. Glad your back in your camper and on the road again. I think that’s a Willy nelson tune.

  42. Patricia from Fl says:

    Hi Weather
    Here in Florida, it is so easy to live in an air conditioned house all year long. But I try to keep the windows open most of the year as one of my favorite times of the day is sunrise when I awaken to the sound of birds singing.

    • weather says:

      Hi Patti,
      Nice picturing that year round for you to enjoy,I’m glad I found your note “back” here just now.I would have responded more promptly had I seen it yesterday.Hearing the “real world” instead of an air conditioner’s hum -good choice!Hope this morning was as sweet as usual for you 🙂 weather

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