Pioneer Trail and where to go next?

Friday, June 12

“Okay, crew.  This is it.  The forest.  Are you sure you want to do this?  It could get very spooooo-ky.”

P1050719 - CopyBridget and Reggie are not deterred.

These two explorers are rarin’ to go!

P1050727And so it is that we leave the safety of our camp at Hebo Lake, east of Pacific City, Oregon, and begin our trek on the 8-mile Pioneer Trail.

P1050716 - CopyIt’s an arduous journey.

The crew is determined to overcome all obstacles!

P1050725It is our good fortune that other pioneers have come this way before us, beginning in 1854, and the trail is clear.  This was a route for homesteaders between the Willamette and Tillamook Valleys.

We pause in our journey to appreciate the wonders of the forest . . .

P1050729. . .  from the tree tops . . .

P1050717 - Copy. . . . to the mossy floor.

P1050731The trail ends at South Lake at 2,400 feet.  Not high, but about a thousand feet higher than Hebo Lake.

P1050715 - CopyThere’s a campground at South Lake which doesn’t open until June 15th, which is A Big Clue as to the temperatures.  I’m not interested in camping there because the temperatures at Hebo Lake are just right — pleasantly brisk.

P1050732The trail becomes steep.

I consult with the crew and it is decided that the best course of action would be to turn back.  We know our limits.  We also know how nice it is to lounge around the campsite and eat stuff.

Saturday, June 13

P1050712 - CopyOur campsite is the only site at Hebo Lake Campground in which the PTV and BLT fit comfortably.  Most of the sites are short or unlevel.

I’m a bit uneasy about this site because it is next to a shelter and picnic table available for day-use people.

Today being Saturday, we will find out if my uneasiness is justified.

After breakfast I put Bridget and Reggie in their suits for a walk around the lake.

P1050708 - CopyFolks began arriving yesterday afternoon.  More arrive this Saturday morning.  They hurry to the bank of the lake and to fishing platforms and cast their lines.

P1050711 - CopyNear a fishing platform I pause for a shot.  The man there is rummaging in his tackle box.  He looks up and smiles.

P1050690“Have you seen the eagle?” he asks.

“No! What eagle?  Where?”

He points and I zoom in for the photo.  The eagle is in an ideal position above us for watching the activities at the lake.

As the crew and I walk away, I wish the man good luck with his fishing.

“Oh, I’ve already had lots of luck,” he replies, grinning.  “We were over to Snyder Lake this morning.  My buddy and I caught fifty trout.”  He holds his hands apart to indicate they were about 12-15 inches.  “Rainbows.  We threw them all back.”

I bug out my eyes.  “Fifty!  And now you’re here . . . . “

“Yeah, we’re after a lunker now.”

“Oh, you fishermen are never satisfied!”  We laugh and the crew and I continue our walk around the lake.

(Later I search in vain for the location of Snyder Lake!)

It’s a beautiful day and everyone seems to be enjoying themselves.

P1050706My concern about weekenders making life miserable is totally off. 

The people at Hebo Lake this weekend are here to enjoy the lake and forest.  They fish, walk the trails, have picnics, and watch their children run around and play.  They don’t make obnoxious noise.  And when they leave, they don’t leave trash and vandalism in their wake.

Sunday, June  14

Decision time.  I study my Benchmark atlas.  I want to see the northern portion of Oregon’s coast.  However, suitable camps are difficult to find.  I don’t want to camp at a state park at the beach.  Too many people crowded together.  Same with the coast’s RV parks.

Inland is unpopulated forest owned by the state.  A gazillion logging roads and not much else.

Definitely not where I want to boondock.

Of all the secluded places in which we’ve camped over the past 3+ years, Oregon is the only place where I’ve been reluctant to leave the Best Little Trailer in a boondock while we go off in the Perfect Tow Vehicle.  Just a feeling I have . . . and I pay attention to my intuition.  Anyway . . . .

I decide we will backtrack.

Monday, June 15

We break camp and motor southward along the coast.  It’s dark, windy, foggy, misty, and cold.

P1050737We will return to Blackberry Campground and maybe tomorrow we can go to the beach again!



I especially appreciate your loyalty during my recent absence. 

You are the best!

P1050757-001Ah, Oregon. 


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194 Responses to Pioneer Trail and where to go next?

  1. Pamela K. in GA says:

    hi sue, glad you’re back.

    • Pamela K. in GA says:

      Oh My Gosh! Am I ~First~?!
      Can’t be, maybe that darling Reggie playing games with me and Sue’s blog? … 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Pamela for the welcome back. CONGRATULATIONS, YOU’RE FIRST!

      I’d love to stay online and reply to everyone’s comment. The crew and I need to vacate this campsite for another camper to move in. We’re off to our next camp. I hope to have internet there and if I do I’ll be back today. See ya’!

  2. Terri From Texas says:

    Wow, am i first??
    And I even read the post!

  3. Terri From Texas says:

    Well, Dang, Pamela-Ya got here before me! Am I second, then?

  4. Tara from Pac NW says:

    That last picture with the caption is perfect! 😉

    Sue I had mentioned about a month ago when you were in central Oregon that I had made plans to camp at Contorta Flat campground on Crescent Lake. I wanted to update you that it did not disappoint….very beautiful, unspoiled, like an Oregon paradise. The only negative and I think you had noted, is that there is not much privacy between sites. I do not think you would have liked that. But I would definitely go back again!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      That’s great, Tara! It’s such fun to pick out a camp and discover it to be what you wanted. Crescent Lake is pretty. I only saw one end of it as we were touring several lakes that day. I thought of you then and wondered.

  5. Jean in Southaven, MS says:

    Missed you. Looks wonderful. Hope you found your perfect place to camp.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Jean. It’s nice to learn that I was missed. We have found two more good camps, in addition to Blackberry. I hope to catch up on my blog-writing and tell you about them this weekend.

  6. Teri LiveOak Fl says:

    I love that weather where you are feature. Brisk..I’m missing that right now. Love the forest

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Teri,

      I appreciate the positive feedback on the weather feature in the sidebar. I find it handy myself. Keep in mind that inland camps are about ten degrees warmer. At least that’s what I’ve experienced.

  7. Terri From Texas says:

    In don’t know, Sue, Wallowa State Park is an awfully beautiful park! Just curious, have you heard of nefarious goings on with trailers left unattended or is it really just a feeling you have? I remember years ago my parents bypassed California, although I think they really wanted to see the Sequoia Trees, because of theft at campsites. I think we were in Washington state in a State Park where just about everyone on our loop was burgled. We were not cause my Dad always parked as close as possible to our trailer and we left nothing of consequence outside. It was sad, though.
    Wherever you go, enjoy yourself!

    • Dawn in MI says:

      Yes I wonder too if there is something Sue’s heard about boondocking in OR. Or what her gut is telling her and why. Hmmmm….

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Terri and Dawn,

      No, I haven’t heard bad news about RVs or campers or anything like that. I’m analytical. I always analyze a situation, a location, the landscape, a campsite, and people. I choose a boondock accordingly.

      While in Oregon, the areas where there’s a lot of camping going on, I haven’t felt comfortable leaving the BLT outside of a campground. I don’t know why…. Maybe because I’ve seen people that I can’t “read” well (i.e. analyze as to their motivations). I could be wrong because I don’t have any evidence, but I’m not going to test the situation.

      • Elizabeth in WA says:

        You are so right to listen to how you “feel” Sue…life has taught me to pay attention…does not mean something won’t happen…but at least you might avoid something bad. Never hurts being careful!! As to theft? Today we noticed more little disappearing things in our postage stamp front yard!! We have a little picket fence around the area…just for looks one, very short…and in order to get it to handle the curves of the yard, we had to stake it down with some tent stakes, which were not noticeable due to all the plants we had there last year…yep, someone is taking some of them. Will be interesting to see how long it takes them until they are all gone and the little picket fence too…but I have no interest in planting this year. We pulled all the weeds and will put new bark down and call it good. People are something else aren’t they? I told hubby, I have a feeling no matter what we leave out there…eventually it will be taken away!! Hubby is thinking to get a little camera up high under the porch to “observe”…I don’t think it worth the money…but it might be interesting to see…

        • Susan in south central WA says:

          My parents have lived on a corner between a grade school and a middle school for 50 years and have seen more than their fare share of vandalism. 15 years ago or so they put a couple fake surveillance cameras in the windows. Battery operated, they have little red blinks lights and are strategically pointed. Yes, the incidence of vandalism went and stayed down!

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

    Gosh, what a beautiful place! I love Oregon……much better than the desert pictures of a couple months ago. Reggie sure looks thin next to Bridget, or maybe it’s the other way around. She looks pretty round next to little Reggie. Tell Bridget I always try to hang around with friends who are at least as round as I am. Hope you 3 find another lovely place soon.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Linda Rose,

      Well, Bridget is bigger than Reggie and she does carry extra weight. Reggie’s very active and his little body is lean and muscular, whereas Bridget moves slowly with a minimum of effort and her body is pudgy.

  9. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Top ten…Whoo hoo! 🙂

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Hi, Sue,

      Welcome back – we missed you! 🙂

      Love the picture of the Crew walking shoulder to shoulder. They were doing some very determined, serious exploring! Very pretty buttercups (?) nestled in the ferns. Glad you are listening to your inner voice.

      Enjoy the rest of your day! Sending you all hugs from me and Gracie pup! 🙂

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Thanks, Denise, for the nice welcome back and the hugs from you and Gracie pup.

        The crew was in the perfect mood for the trail. It was dark and cool and the trail was cleared. No brush to struggle through.

  10. Hi Sue, I forgot how much I miss you pictures and your descriptions, and of course your puppy pictures…I know, I know, it has only been a couple of day, but it seems like a couple of weeks… Your naration is next to none. Yeah thats it, I miss your naration. Anyway not that I did not totally enjoy the comments by the blogorinos. I am glad you are back, have fun catching up with us. By the way, beautiful GREEN pictures…back to the beach!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      What a sweet comment, Shirlene. Thank you! It’s always a good feeling to hear I was missed.

  11. cate walsh says:

    Hi Sue & Crew,

    Have been racking my brain about how to retire on my social security and small pension. I had been looking at 3rd world countries where the livin’ is cheap, like Ecuador, but for many reasons I wasn’t feeling the love.

    So just this week I began reading blogs about full-time RVing and as I will be a solo mature woman on the road, so was delighted to find your site! You are inspiring me!! I’m still working and in between chores today I’m reading your blog…I have a smile on my face enjoying the beautiful photos of your camp sites and the charming, funny photos of the crew “hiking”, beaching, and relaxing.

    Thanks to folks like you…I may have found my retirement dream. I have hope and will begin to plan my escape.

    I know this is long…thank you Sue and crew. I’ll be back soon.


    • Terrie G says:

      Cate, so glad you’re considering RVing in your retirement! I’m a 72 year-old woman who’s been full-timing for 9 years. I can’t imagine doing anything else. Great life. Check the internet for singles RVing clubs. I belong to one that’s headquartered in Deming, NM. Members have shared valuable info and friendship. Sometimes I camp with them and sometimes I’m on my own. I love to boondock and I stay in state, national, and commercial RV parks. You can do it all! See you down the road.

      • Diann in MT says:

        Hi, Terrie G.
        Could you recommend the singles RV clubs that you think are best for you. Thanks.

        • Terrie G says:

          Depends on what you’re interested in. I started out joining Loners on Wheels (LoW) and Wandering Individuals Network (WIN). Both have lots to offer. LOWs has an RV park in Deming, NM, and membership affords a deep discount at the park. We have 2 rallies a year at our Deming, NM, park. Individual state chapters have camping schedules and rallies of their own. Many LoW members gather in the winter months at Slab City near Niland, CA (check the Slab City website) and in January near Quartzsite, AZ, for the annual RV Show. Individual members get together and caravan to other areas such as Death Valley, Alaska, and Canada. WINs have regular kayaking and canoeing expeditions as well as rallies in Yuma and Quartzsite, AZ, and at Slab City, CA. You can attend up to 3 activities in these clubs before joining, so you can sample both to see which fits the best. Many folks are members of both! Check the websites for activity information: and

          • Diann in MT says:

            Thanks. That’s a lot of information and great starting points for some research. Just toying with the loner idea right now, but it is really appealing. D.

            • Terrie G says:

              The nicest aspect of this life is that you can be with folks as much as you want and you can be on your own as much as you want. Do a web search on rv clubs for singles or some such term and you’ll find lots. Nothing is set in stone. You can always join a group and drop membership if it doesn’t suit. I also belong to Escapees. Great group and great rv parks. They have a singles sub-group called Solos. I started out in 2006 with NO RVing experience, an F-250 and a 29 ft. 5th wheel. I now have a 32 ft class A motor home and a tow vehicle. With the help of new friends and through the kindness of many strangers, I feel very comfortable in handling most RVing issues that may arise. So, have minimal fear and welcome to the life!

            • Velda in Roseville Ca says:

              Diann, the nice thing about being a solo RV’er is, you can be as alone as you want or as sociable as you want. There are situations for you to choose. Welcome to the Blogerinos! Ask away because we always have opinions! LOL

          • BadgerRickInWis says:

            Hi Terri G

            I’ve never been much of a “joiner” but I have run across the loners on wheels website before. Might be interesting. Do you know how much annual dues are. There is no mention of it on their website. Just camping rates for their site in Deming. Just curious.

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              If I may butt in here… I did a search “What are the annual dues for Loners on Wheels?” and came up with $45 for membership in the national organization. Then the regional or local organization may have a small fee, like $5.

            • Terrie G says:

              To Cate about LoWs: On the website, click “Join” in the header and you get the member prices: $45 for one year. If you click on “Chapters” you can find out if there’s one near you. You could attend one of their camp-outs or other activity to see how you like it. My first LoW contact was the Fall 2005 rally at the Deming headquarters. A friend had talked me into going, though I wasn’t enthusiastic about it. I wanted to sell my house in Denver but couldn’t decide where to move or what kind of domicile I wanted. On the third day of the rally, I had an “Aha” moment and decided to be a full-time RVer. I saw many women older than I traveling in all sorts of rigs by themselves. I thought, “If they can do it, so can I,” and the rest is history. I went to my first rally on my own in my own fifth wheel in April 2o06 and have been on the road full-time since September 2006. I closed on my house on September 26 and drove out of town on September 28. Still loving it.

      • cate walsh says:

        Thanks again, Terri. The suggestion on joining a club feels good to me. As I love the natural world and peaceful settings I would like to try boondocking as well as caravaning. So many wonderful options to explore.
        Safe journeys, Cate W.

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Hi, Cate! By commenting, you are now an official blogorino – welcome! 🙂

    • Pamela K. in GA says:

      So glad you found RV Sue, and your future retirement dreams through her blog! That’s very exciting and liberating too. Frees up the worries of the mind and budget to follow your heart 🙂 Love that!
      My hubby and I have been full-timing for over half of our 30 years together! Wouldn’t want to live any other way! And I also take some solo trips as my me-time, love those too! Just budget for repairs and health care and you’ll do just fine. 🙂

    • Teri Live Oak Fl says:

      Sue’s site is great and is another one that is informative and encouraging . Good Luck

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, cate!

      Welcome to my blog! I’m delighted to see you here and to learn that my blog is helping you plan for your retirement. You can see already that this is a helpful, caring group of people here. They are eager to answer questions and lend support when needed. I try to help, too.

      No, your comment isn’t long. There’s no word limit here. 🙂 I appreciate you taking the time and making the effort to introduce yourself and to share where you are in your retirement planning.

      • cate walsh says:

        Hi Sue,

        Feel free to ignore my post to you today on the Guest Blogger/ Fishermen’s Bend blog. I found your responses here and don’t want you to get whip lash looking for me, and carpel tunnel answering all my questions.

        You and the ” fan club” are the best. Thanks for all the helpful info so far.

        I’m grateful for the kind listening ear, and warm responses,
        Cate W

    • BadgerRickInWis says:

      Welcome Cate, Sounds like you and I found this place doing a similar search. I thought I’d learn a bit about RVing (which I know little about) and a simpler lifestyle in retirement. But since I became a regular reader I have found this community to be so much more than that. Again welcome.

      • cate walsh says:

        Thanks so much for the welcome. I wish I could join everyone on the road right now! Meanwhile, what a super community of folks to learn from, share with, and dream of my escape with.
        Blessings to you, Cate W.

    • Elizabeth in S.E. New Mexico says:

      The Spring of 1984 was when I met my first group of RV’rs….. I
      thought to myself…. I can do that! At the time I had no income
      beyond what I could earn.

      I got a little VW camper van, no pop up. It was a 1976 model…
      That was my only home for a bit more than 3 years…. Next was
      a 25′ Class C that my Mom purchased for me when she was
      convinced I really wanted to be a Full Time RV’r……

      Six years later my Social Security kicked in and I did not have to
      “work” anymore. Learning to be frugal in order to survive, was
      the greatest lesson! Those nine years as a FT RV’r with no income
      other than what I earned were probably the best nine years of my
      life. One of the other lessons I learned was to live “in the moment”
      as plans more frequently than not just do not work out anywhere
      near as well as “spontaneity.”

      My only home is still an RV, a big 5th wheel that is not going anywhere.
      I am thinking about getting a motor home small enough so that I will not
      need to tow my car and big enough for me, my Clyde Cat, my music and
      my keyboard…..

      Many times I have been asked if given the same circumstances, I would again
      become a FT RV’r? In a heart beat! This has been the best thing I have EVER done for myself….

      Jump in girl! It is the greatest life available! Your life really belongs to you
      moment by moment!
      Happy Trails and best wishes from Elizabeth

      • rvsueandcrew says:


        Wonderful advice and your extensive full-time experience backs it up! Thanks for sharing your wisdom.

      • cate walsh says:

        Hi Elizabeth,

        Thank you so much! Your personal story has given me such hope. While mulling over possible options, I’ve thought about buying something small to live in while I keep working for the next two years, and then hopefully getting something a little closer to my ideal size. I’d rather invest in my rig than keep paying rent! You did it, so maybe I can too.
        Safe journeys, Cate

    • Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

      Welcome to RVSues blog Cate! Luckily I found this blog while I was waiting for my house in Vermont to sell. I was going online everyday to learn about full-time RVing. I became addicted to this blog and went back to the beginning of the blog and read everything. Pretty much filled a notebook with ideas as well as things I needed to know about an RV. I have a 27′ Class C and it is perfect for me. I bought it used with only 22,000 miles on it. Keep in mind that the depreciation on a RV in the first year or so is REALLY big. Also, when you buy a used RV the bugs are already worked out and you may have some upgrades that the owner did. Anyway, that is what I learned going on line and reading this blog. So happy to have you here Cate.


      • cate walsh says:

        That sounds like very good advice, Krystina. I have so much to learn and it looks like I will have a community of experts as teachers. How exciting to meet all of you here!
        Happy trails, Cate W.

  12. Lee J in Northern California says:

    Cate Walsh, welcome to this blog! I am not the official greeter by any means, just a person that has been gratified by all the blogorinos experiences and sharing attitude.
    Did you begin at the beginning of Sue’s blog, what a wealth of information about this lifestyle.

    I so enjoyed today’s post, such wonderful photos, and as usual your ability as a writer shines through.
    A couple of days ago I passed my iPad to my husband and told him he must read your new blog and see the photos. My husband said you were an excellent writer, very engaging…. I also found out that my neighbor regularly reads your blog, he loves to hear of your adventures too. I have a feeling there are way more readers than you can even imagine, just quietly enjoying your adventures, basking in the green glow of the forest, feeling the kisses of the fog on their cheeks.
    I thank you more than you can imagine…kiss the fur balls for us, Arlo and Zoe send doggie greetings.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Lee J. Thanks for sharing my blog with your husband. I appreciate the compliment he gave me and your kind words, too. 🙂

      I hate it when I don’t post for a couple of days. I remember what it’s like to dream about a better life and to be tied to a job and home and circumstances, yearning to break loose! I depended upon RV blogs to keep my dream alive. Now I’m living my dream and I haven’t forgotten what those days — well, years — were like when I savored every word of the blogs I read.

  13. DesertGinger says:

    Hi gang. On my lunch break, before afternoon class. My back has been bothering me, so I went to chiropractor yesterday, and am skyping in to class today while I stay in my comfy chair at home. Those classroom chairs are awful. I may do this another day or two, to give my back a rest.

    It is somewhat cool and overcast here. NY is not having a hot summer! Which is ok with me. I may go swimming again later, or possibly tomorrow. I think we may have a class movie tonite.

    Sue, are you going to get up to Washington this summer? So much to see up there. And if you got all the way up to Canada you could see Victoria Island, which is just fabulously beautiful.

    Ok, need to go make some lunch. Have a nice day all!

    • BadgerRickInWis says:

      Thanks for the update DG. Sounds like you are feeling better AND taking care of yourself. Smart woman. (NOT that I’m surprised.)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Ginger,

      “skyping in to class”…. Wow! What a godsend when your back is bothering you. I hope all it needs is the rest you are giving it. Thanks for keeping in touch.

      I don’t know what we are doing this summer. We probably will go to Washington because I love it!

      • DesertGinger says:

        You know, I have had back problems for years. I think it comes with desk work and age. I have stenosis, bone spurs, herniated disks, arthritis…if I work, I tend to start having trouble unless I have a really good chair and desk. So this is no surprise. But I have gotten better at dealing with it over the years. And yes, skyping in is wonderful!

  14. Barbara (Nashville) says:

    That photo of the eagle is beautiful. What an awesome bird we have designated as our symbol of America. The crew seemed pretty content and how nice to have decent campers for a change. Glad you are back with us, we miss you when you are gone.

    • Applegirl NY says:

      I agree, Barbara, that picture took my breath away. So beautiful.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Barbara,

      Sweet of you to tell me I was missed . . . and thank you regarding the eagle photo. It looks better when clicked and enlarged. I think I’ve seen a total of four eagles this year!

  15. Pauline in Mississippi says:

    That forest and water are beautiful….so very peaceful looking. It looks so GREEN!! I love the picture of the eagle!!! So majestic. We have a few around here and I will stop the car to watch them!
    Hot and getting hotter here in Mississippi
    Lots of love and Big hugs to you and the crew

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Pauline,

      Well, one thing is for sure. Mississippi will get hotter. 🙂 I love you, too!

  16. Sandy says:

    Your pictures are amazing as always, but oh my, the shot of the eagle really took the cake. I got a kick out of how you said you were putting the dogs in their “suits;” that’s really cute. My two dachshunds hate having the harnesses put on them, but once they both hide, we find them, and they get “suited up,” they love their walk. Blessings to you and the crew

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Sandy,

      Do your dachshunds have the regular, strap-type harnesses or do they have the soft type? I hate the strap kind. I think they aren’t as comfortable and they have a way of tangling into a Chinese puzzle in the middle of the night when one of the crew needs to go out. The soft type click and you’re done!

      Thanks for complimenting my photos. That eagle looks like he’s posing for the camera!

  17. We missed you, Sue!!!!

    Loved all the pics from your hike…felt like we were right along with you. All so beautiful!

    My favorite line: “We also know how nice it is to lounge around the campsite and eat stuff.” I second that! 😉

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Marla,

      That’s my goal — to have you “right along with you (us).” 🙂

      Yeah, why push yourself up a trail when you could be back at camp enjoying a snack… (another RVSue quotable quote!)….

  18. Pamela K. in GA says:

    WOW! The skies here have been rumbling for almost twenty minutes, non-stop! Heat Thunder, it’s been HOT! HOT! HOT! Just thunder, no rain yet but it sounds like a doozie of a storm is coming our way!!! Hopefully hubby will be home from his workplace soon…they stand-down at the first sight of lightning! Earlier this morning we had a rolling-power outage, just a flickr or two. Hope we don’t lose power this evening. We often do and have that followed up with straight-line winds. Sure glad the RV batteries are good and our dinner is already made. Crabmeat-Mac with Mayo, Snow Peas, and Celery Seed, served with fresh fruit chunks. Always a favorite of Klemper’s.
    Going now to see what the skies look like!

    • Wow Pamela, keep your head down and your bowl filled with ice cream.

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      What time is dinner? Sounds good! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hey, Pamela! Are you still there? I hope you didn’t blow away. It’d be a shame to miss that crabmeat and fresh fruit dinner!

      • Pamela K. says:

        LOL, didn’t blow away, yet anyways 🙂
        Don’t ya love it when the wind tosses our tiny homes around?!
        Mine has known to Wind-Dance before, lol. It’s when the wind wants to Rock-N-Roll that gives me pause to worry some. Tonight is a Wind-Dance kinda evening, just a nice gentle sway, mood music for RVs. It’s all good and most of the storm passed us.
        Sue, about that dinner…
        If you like Crabmeat or the imitation Crabmeat Pieces then you would mostlikely enjoy this dinner a lot. No cooking except for the Mac Noodles and draining them. Then let them cool to room temp. Next add the Crabmeat, small chunks or shredded, and real Mayo to texture as you would like it to be. Mix all that up together. Next open and drain a can of Green Peas or use frozen Snow Peas and mix again. Now you’re done! Just top with some Celery Seed spice. 🙂 Serve with fresh fruit chunks. I buy the premade fruits cups at the grocery in the produce section. That way I don’t have fresh fruit leftovers to spoil later. It really is a perfect dinner for a small RV kitchen or as a ~almost~ no cook meal. Also great for taking on picnics! Take along some Club Crackers, Iced Sweet Tea and it is an amazing picnic to enjoy after hiking. I take mine in Lock-N-Locks. I swear I live by Lock-N-Locks all summer long. No leaks with that brand, they are the best out there and leave no oders from what has been stored in them, love that!
        Well, I know you do not cook but Mac Noodles you cook so try it 😉

        • Denise - Richmond VA says:

          Thanks for sharing your recipe, Pamela. 🙂

        • Barbara (Nashville) says:

          I do this with the Suddenly Salad Mixes at the grocery and also add salad tomatoes and diced cucumber also sliced black olives. I’ll try yours.

  19. Another winner in the camp department, I’m glad the weekenders were not loud and obnoxious. I’m sure you found another great site that all three of you will approve of.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Lisa,

      Yes, we are in “another great site.” In fact, I have two camps to share with you in the next posts…. very different from each other and yet both good.

  20. weather says:

    Nice for folks to know how to just enjoy nature,family, the outdoors and it’s intended activities while they’re in it then leave it the way they found it,especially on a week end .I’m sure you appreciated them as much as they appreciated the chance to be at such a lovely place.I’m glad the guys came looking for the one big fish,you may have missed the eagle otherwise-great picture!Best cute tush shot ever of the brave crew as the climbed over those enormous tree roots.Gee,you must have had to crane your neck back really far or lay down to get the treetops photo.Amazing to compare their size with that of a buttercup and think they both manage to survive in the same environment and give one walking through so much pleasure,shelter and even awe by just being what they are.Altogether pretty post Sue,thanks.

    Love the bygone days story flavor “and so it is that we leave the safety…and begin our trek…” lends it.You and crew are good decision makers as well as being brave explorers-heeding your instincts as you go and skipping steep trails to eat stuff-wise

    • Hey Weather, does this look like you view from your back yard!

      • weather says:

        No it doesn’t.Their yard is level with the lake(it’s 22 miles long) at it’s narrow calm end.Mine’s on a wild densely treed and vegetated cliff where the lake is 7 miles wide and MOVES,often the opposite shore can’t be seen from here .If that’s what I saw here I’d have moved next to a manicured city park with a pond in it,Ha!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, weather,

      Your comments the past few days have been enjoyed immensely. That’s nothing new. It’s always a pleasure to hear from you. I love how your summaries of my posts enhance them, have us considering connections and seeing deeper than the surface shows.

      Yeah, I liked the “tush” shot, too. I had to anticipate the shot because Bridget and Reggie waste no time. They’re up and over in a split second.

      The campers at Hebo Lake were a delight. Families being happy together. . . . People intent upon their fishing . . . . Quiet hikers . . . It was nice.

  21. cate walsh says:

    Hey Denise, Lee J., Pamela K. & Terrie G (did I forget anyone?)

    Thank you sooo much for the welcome, the encouragement, the great info about clubs, and suggestions for places to camp. With this type of community out there I will never feel alone if flying solo. I hope I can launch in one year but it might take two. I don’t have a house to sell (that was gone with the divorce 10+yrs ago) so should I finance my first rig, or cash out part of my pension, or ??? All advice welcome and thanks for your time.
    Cate W.

    • Hi and Welcome Cate, my advice to you is hang in there for a day and ask Sue…She is very knowledgeable and has made wise decisions on her life and has managed to do fine… But I do know that if you finance, say 40,000 for an RV, you will end up paying approximately 70,000 in the end… But is not a good idea to start a new life in debt, my humble opinion. So save, save, save…you have a couple of years. You are now one of us, we will be with you when you take you first step…I hope!

    • Terrie G says:

      Good advice from Shirlene. My female relatives tend to live into their nineties. With that in mind, I financed my rigs. I might need my retirement savings to supplement my monthly income if I have to use assisted living or a nursing home. Just depends on what your savings must do for you. I prefer to die in my motor home, not in a fiery crash, but in my bed, asleep, at night! If I’m not that lucky, I’ll have the savings to back me up in a nice assisted living residence or a nursing home. Good luck! (PS. Buy used!)

      • cate walsh says:

        Thanks for your helpful thoughts, Terrie. I agree…much better to live your best life now. Cate w.

    • kgdan says:

      If you finance may deduct interest from taxes.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      When I was planning for a life on the road some 8 years or so in the future I faced the same choice — borrow to buy a rig, cash out some of my teacher pension to buy a rig, or save up enough money for it. I chose the latter and I’m glad I did!

      When I say “save” I don’t mean tuck a little extra away each month. I mean give up everything and anything that is unnecessary, right down to every nickel. Really.

      At first it seemed impossible for me to save enough for a tow vehicle and rig. I thought I might be able to buy a used rig. After a while I saw how the money was adding up due to my thrift and I realized I could save for a new rig. I hope you will read my blog from the beginning. Remember that the early posts need to be read at (not .net) in order for the slideshows to work.

      In short, I vote for scrimping and saving, but, of course, you have to figure what is best for you and your situation.

      • cate walsh says:

        Thanks again, Sue. Your personal story about funding the dream gave me a place to pause and consider my best course of action. I can’t wait to go back and read your blog from the beginning. So much fun, such beautiful photos, I’m taking notes on the tips, and camp sites too.
        Take good care, Cate W.

  22. cate walsh says:

    Oh..where do I find the very beginning of Sue’s blog with the tips on the lifestyle for newbies?

    • On the right side of the post look for “To view posts from June 2013 forward” and below view posts from June 2013 and back… Warning: Tears may flow at some point when Sue loses Spike. Lots to review and catch up on, get a blanket and settle in, it will be great.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Here’s a link to my first blog post.

      There isn’t a place on my blog to find full-timing tips or boondocking hints or anything like that. The information is embedded in the stories I tell and in the comments readers make. So start from the beginning and you’ll learn about a retirement lifestyle that many enjoy on a budget. You may find it’s just right for you, too!

      • Velda in Roseville Ca says:

        I highly agree, go to the beginning. It was worth every minute and hour I spent. Recommend you keep either a physical or computer notebook at hand and take notes as you read.

      • cate walsh says:

        Thanks Sue! I finally found this posting again, and both of your responses to me. I really appreciate your advice.

        Another thought I’ve had this week is : Buy small and park it someplace while I continue to work and save for something bigger. I would rather pay for a starter rig than rent on my current apartment. Is that crazy talkin’.

        Kisses on the noses to the crew,
        Cate W.

      • cate walsh says:

        Will do. Read 1st blog just now. I would be very interested in having a solar panel and wonder who I could get to build a great custom box like yours for the batteries. What a super idea.
        I’m going to “read thru the night” to catch up on your blog. Fun!
        🙂 Cate

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I don’t know who you could hire for a simple job like that. It’s the kind of thing anyone with a home shop could put together for you.

          Enjoy your reading!

  23. cate walsh says:

    Thanks Shirlene…I could cash out part of my pension if I find a rig at the right price and not get a loan. Any place to email Sue in a day or two with this question, other than responding to the blogs?
    LvU guys and gals already. I want to be one of you for sure!

    • Hi again Cate, Well about SUE… need to go back and read her blog from the beginning probably. She is very private and does not give out her personal information or location. But she is usually here almost everyday and answers most questions almost immediately…so hang in there, she will be here soon, as soon as she gets internet again.

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Hi, Cate,

      Sue’s blog provides tons of useful information. Many of her blogorinos share their opinions, give good advice and share what has worked (or not) for them regarding their RV. Sue’s little online blogorino family offers tremendous support and guidance….just ask! We are always learning something new, whether it is where to find a secluded campground, how to use benchmark maps, RV battery and solar info, where to find good healthcare, etc. 🙂

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Your comment has me beaming with pride, Denise. Love the way you describe my blog and the blogorinos. . .

      • cate walsh says:

        Hi Denise,

        Hope you see this. Thanks you for being one of my new “info angels”. I can already tell that Sue’s blog and the RV community that follow it will be amazing resourses.

        May I ride along vicariously for a bit?

        Be well, Cate W.

  24. Barb from Hoquiam! says:

    Hey there Sue!
    I agree with you that your thought of being wary is justified. We have shared before that the wilds of both WA and OR are a bit sketchy… well known for labs and pot farms… And the armor that comes with those things….
    Over the last year our vintage trailer group has had a number of folks post alerts and stolen trailer notices. Up and GONE. Last week a family Airstream (60 yrs old, just been rehabbed–ONE family owners) was stolen. With facebook and lots of people AND an ipad that the thieves powered up (LOL) they found it! The entire family had camped in this trailer all those years… to lose it was horrible! But they got it back. Some have not been so lucky. I say this as my own Moosee (68 Silver Streak) is parked 100 miles away from me and it makes me nervous… but I have the locks on it, and it is in a safe area (I hope). So, listen to your gut. 🙂

    Your photos are wonderful. As always.
    Those kids of yours sure are funny! So sweet!

    Hugs from Hoquiam (and back to Orting soon).

    • TXBX says:

      I agree, Barb!
      If I feel a tickle on the back of my neck, the need to look around behind me, or even if the campsite ‘just doesn’t seem right’, I’m not spooked, but deep inside, I know I’d be happier and more “free-to-be-me” if I moved on to another place.
      I’ve never had any problems or ‘incidents’ to make me feel that way, but I think we all have a ‘built-in’ radar that tends to help keep us safe!! It makes no difference if it’s on a street in town, or deep in the desert or country-side boon-docking, ……. I’ve always trusted in making a different ‘choice’ when I get that ‘funny feeling’. Things like that may be just my imagination, but I’d prefer not to take chances!

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Like you, I’ve never had a problem and to get “the creeps” is rare.

      • Barb from Hoquiam! says:

        Way back when… over 20 yrs ago, I lived in OR and had friends who were part of a drug task force… many stories about camps out in the woods (high cover, means aerial support is tough to get). Their helicopter was shot down. By traffickers. From what I understand, most of the meth is now brought in from Mexico, but they do sometimes still use the old roads and pathways to move it…

        I know those roads… they are really hidden in some cases. 🙂
        Safety First!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Barb,

      Ooh, Moosee must be lonely for you! 🙂 I know the feeling you have. I start longing for the BLT when I drive a certain distance away, as if the distance makes any difference!

      Thanks for the compliment on the photos. I hope you are enjoying a peaceful evening.

      • Barb from Hoquiam! says:

        Yeah, ‘Houston we have a problem’. I can’t sleep at home.


        I am so tired of 3AM days. I slept til 5 nearly every day for 18 days. I sure miss those two hours! Now what do I do? LOL

        Barb, in lala land of the very sleepy.

    • BadgerRickInWis says:

      Not to dispute your knowledge of the PNW and I CERTAINLY would not question Sue’s intuition but just for the sake of accuracy the Airstream in question was stolen not from a campground but from a very affluent suburb in Kansas City KS.

      My point being that crime can happen anywhere. All we can do is take common sense precautions and go through life with our hearts open and our minds engaged.

      • Barb from Hoquiam! says:

        You are so right Badger. There have been several taken-mostly from parking lots (with cars attached in some cases!). You are right… I was just passing on info… Sorry for the confusion. Many people don’t know (I didn’t til last summer) that locks can be put onto the hitch… sure if someone REALLY wants it, they can cut it but any ‘somethin’ to slow them down is worthwhile.

        Again, I am sorry for the confusion.

  25. Cindy in OR says:

    Like Cate, I’m planning my retirement based on what I’ve read mainly on RVSue’s blog. I’m in my mid-fifties so still have a ways to go, but am trying to find ways in which I can take an early retirement at 62-65, instead of full retirement age of 67. Call me crazy, but I’m actually considering full-timing in a teardrop. I don’t have a vehicle, so will be starting from scratch so there is a lot to research and consider. But I do have a dog!

    Being a native Oregonian, I’m also really interested in hearing more about Sue’s OR vibes. I had assumed that I would feel (and be) safer traveling in my own state, but that may not be the case! I have also considered a class B-type van, so I there wouldn’t be as much setup/takedown and I would always have everything with me.

    I’m really enjoying the stories and photos of the coast. I love the coast. And eastern OR around the Eagle Cap Wilderness area. It is so beautiful there. With fewer people. And it is fun to visit the tiny towns and occasional ghost town.

    I’ve also researched some groups and wanted to mention that there are also camping groups based on their trailer/camper type/brand or geographic area. I’ve found a teardrop group in the Pacific Northwest. A group for Cricket Trailers (which I’ve considered), a group for women (Sisters on the Fly), there are a bunch. I’m sure there are some on as well. And most people seem really happy and friendly, even if you don’t own the right kind of rig! I don’t mind singles groups as I am single, but am not really looking for a date or partner so hesitate to get too involved with those groups.

    I’m so looking forward to the day I can drive away 🙂

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Hi, Cindy,

      It is not crazy if it works for you! Good luck with researching rigs….that is half the fun! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cindy,

      If you can make it happen, take the early retirement! Time is more precious than money.

      As for full-timing in a teardrop, I’m sure there are those who do that and love their teardrop. I don’t think I’d be happy with one. Make sure you talk with someone who full-times in one, not just excursions like Sisters on the Fly. I spoke with a couple at Davis Lake who have a teardrop and the woman said the setting up is a bother when camping for one night here and there.

      Also people love their class Bs. They say “road trip” to me and I wanted something that says “home.”. . . something to come home to, something more than a chair or an “occupied” sign. Again, that’s me. I only mention these things to help you consider all aspects. If these things don’t bother you, well, then you know…

      It’s nice how blogorinos have suggested different groups that Cate and others may look into. For my suggestion I say you don’t need a group to be happy if groups are not your thing. Design your life to suit your personality.

      As for my “vibes” about Oregon, don’t take that too seriously. They may be completely unwarranted.

      • Cindy in OR says:

        Thanks, rvsue, I appreciate your thoughts and advice. To be honest, I think part of my infatuation with teardrops is that they are usually less money, they are cute as can be, they are easy to tow, and there are at least three small companies in my area that would build them to my specifications. And if I’m really being honest, I’m a bit afraid to tow something bigger. I’ve never towed before, other than rope-towing a car. Good to know that their setup isn’t as easy as I thought, I’m all about living as hassle-free as possible.

        Once I launch, I won’t be maintaining a household, so I really appreciate your comment about “home.” That really resonates with me. And it is more practical as well – I’ve wondered how I and my pup would do in a teardrop in inclement weather.

        So much to think about! I think I’m going to have to go back to the very beginning of your blog too. I’m sure I would learn more!

        Thanks again and happy travels!

        • BadgerRickInWis says:

          Hey Cindy,
          Not to overwhelm you with options but if you want a small trailer you might want to look at a 13ft molded fiberglass trailer like a Scamp. It’s like a mini version of the BLT. Not too much bigger than a teardrop and some come with a bath. Plus because they are made of two solid pieces of fiberglass there are no seams to leak. A used one will seem expensive (about the price of a new teardrop) because they really hold their value.

          A 13ft will mean that you need to take down your dining room table to convert it to a bed at night. For me that would get pretty old pretty quick if I was living in it full time. But only you know what will work for you.

          A couple of links that might help. Enjoy the search.

          • Barb from Hoquiam! says:

            I agree with Badger on this… remember your ‘home’ is a rolling bit of equipment… you need it to be sound and stable. Don’t skimp. In the PacNW, something that is light, but watertight is REALLY important. This is one reason we went with a Silver Streak vintage. Built like a tank, with dual axles it is light weight… Ours is just at 22 ft, and I could live in it easily full time. I would do some changing up, if I was on my own (it has twin beds, which I would alter if I were on my own so I had a sitting space.. and a better mattress for ME). 13 ft is small, but I lived part time (weeks, not years) in a vintage Aladdin of 15 ft. Very open and lots of storage… I personally like vintage, but it can be problematic… you can get a gutted trailer (sometimes as little as free to a couple of grand) A vintage Airstream or Silver Streak are very rain proof – unless they have been in an accident… You can put in all new fittings (yourself or hire it) and make it your own… HOWEVER! Many parks will not allow vintage trailers (they think ‘trashy’ and have rules about them… ). Just want to mention that — ups and downs.
            I think reducing your current ‘footprint’ in the wave of downsizing is REALLY key. A) you don’t spend $$ because there is NO place to put things, and B) you start to sell things off and put aside funds for your travel resources. Can you really truly live in 150 sq ft or less? Watch the tiny house shows… there are really great ideas there. And Sue has truly made great use of her space! I LOVE how she uses the perfect tow vehicle!
            Personally I cannot see a teardrop.. but that is me. They are cute, but just as expensive to put in a park… I want room to change in, LOL. We had a moho and I wouldn’t have one again… my own persnickety feelings… When it needed work, we were stuck… REALLY stuck, with a dog. Out in nowhere. During hunting season… (no mechanics available).

            What I love about RVSue’s blog is it isn’t all rosy and sunshine… And she has shared her numbers, which I think is really really cool. We can all learn something from that. We don’t need so much!

            Hugs from Hoquiam, with sleepy eyes…

            • Cindy in OR says:

              Thanks for all the food for thought, Barb! I too love vintage. However, I’m not really into refurbishing unless it has something to do with a sewing machine, so would have to get one that was ready to go. I appreciate your comment about possible restrictions with campgrounds. I do not think I will have any problems downsizing to something small. I already live in a 360 sq ft cottage and have periodically thought about what I would really need vs. want in a smaller dwelling. Thank you, I hope you slept well!

          • Cindy in OR says:

            Thank you for the suggestion, Rick. I’ll take a look. That might be a good middle of the road way to go. But I hear you about converting a dinette to a bed every night, especially if you’ve had an active day!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          About towing….. This is my opinion based only upon my experience with a 17-foot trailer….

          If you’re gonna’ tow 13 feet, ya’ might as well tow 17 …. There isn’t any difference in ease of towing and there is a world of difference in day-to-day ease of living.

          Ok, so I haven’t towed a 13-footer. How do I know there isn’t any difference? Because towing a 17-footer couldn’t be any easier! I’m unaware the BLT is hitched up as we roll down the road. And backing up isn’t any harder. Really.

          What determines the ease or difficulty with backing up is the distance of the tow vehicle’s wheel base (longer is easier) and it’s relation to the amount of overhang behind the tow vehicle’s back wheels (shorter is easier).
          This is what I’ve read anyway and it seems to be true with my long-base PTV with its relatively short rear overhang.

          Please don’t make your decision based on ease of towing between a 17 foot trailer and something shorter. The price difference isn’t that great… just scrimp and save until you can buy what’s best for you and for the primary purpose you intend. . . . full-time living, as opposed to looking cute (although I think the BLT is cute, too!).

          I’m not saying teardrops and other tiny trailers are bad or wrong. I’m just pointing out what I know from my experience and perspective.

          • Cindy in OR says:

            Thank you Sue, I certainly appreciate you sharing your experience and wisdom. I’m just being a weenie, I’m sure I’ll be fine towing. And I recently read that backing up a short trailer like a teardrop can be harder than backing up a 17 footer. I think I just need to scrimp and save and go long 🙂

            And you are right, in addition to being practical and more homey, the BLT is cute! But not quite as cute as your crew!

    • wildflower in prescott says:

      Cindy, there is a woman blogger who is fulltiming in a teardrop at and her tow is a Harley. She just recently adopted a little dog.

      • Cindy in OR says:

        Thank, wildflower, for the blog recommendation, it sounds interesting! I can pretty much guarantee you I won’t be towing with a Harley, but I’m sure her story is interesting. I’ll check it out!

    • Pamela K. in GA says:

      I am a devoted lover of Teardrop trailers! That said, I would not especially want to live in one full time. There are people who do. I have read that one key to being happy in a teardrop is to have a large roof rack and a waterproof all weather storage box for the extras you do not want to move every night before going to bed…especially if it rains all day. And when it does rain, it is nice to have a pass through from the cabin area into the kitchen galley. A quick reach-n- grab for food and drink at night is a god-send when it rains 🙂 Cindy, there are some teardrops that are made of fiberglass instead of the ones with plywood and thin metal coverings. They seem to hold up better over time, are insulated better and are leak proof. Leaks are a huge concern with teardrops after just a few year’s time. There is a blogger, she is Coyote who lived in a teardrop for several years. Google for her blog. She offers up good info on there. Cindy, not having a car before you find the right rig is really best! Means you are not limited by what you can and cannot pull. As for me, My husband and I full-time in an Airstream trailer. I also solo in my Chevy Conversion Van for ~me-time~ vacations for fishing and to the beach. I could easily live full-time in my conversion van and be comfy in certain climates…another key consideration with teardrops…condensation build-up in some. So there is a lot to think about for sure. Oh, and consider that you are in such a tiny structure if someone of some large animal comes knocking at your door! I think I would want a more sturdy structure around me, just sayin’!
      Well, good luck with your continued research. The perfect rig is out there and awaits with your name on it! I do think you really have to ~fall in love~ with the teardrops to make one of them your full-time home. Consider renting one, several places do rent them! Try renting it in the rain, the hot weather and the cold weather times. It might help you to decide if they are right for you.
      Good luck in your search and future travel adventures!

      • Cindy in OR says:

        Thanks Pamela, it’s good to know about teardrops leaking after a few years. I hadn’t read that. And although I will probably follow the weather, I love the rain so won’t be trying to avoid it!

        I have also thought of conversion vans. They really appeal to me as I would always have everything with me. Did you do the conversion yourself?

        I’ve thought about the large animal vs. teardrop scenario, and you are right, something sturdier and bigger would be called for in that case!

        • Pamela K. says:

          No, did not do the conversion ourselves. It was sent from the Chevy factory to The Explorer Van Co. They do the conversions. Buying one already completed is nice. There are many to chose from for sale on the market. If you go that route, you will need to have it wired for a campground plug-in and some solar if you plan to dry camp or boondock. As for cooking… since it is not a true RV it is not as well vented and structured for cooking needs. I do not cook, propane camp stove, in my van. I always cook outside at a local day park or by the roadside rest stops, etc. Sports complexes are a great place to cook when camping! I have read that some people cook inside their vans with the doors open or windows and vents opened up. While they have been lucky about doing that, I think it is just courting trouble and no insurance company would ever pay out if an accident happened since it is not RV status by law. Another great thing about a coversion van is this; a quick jump to the driver’s seat for any times when someone or something wants to invade your space! Read about Sue’s times with the cows and the bear! Exactly why I love having an engine under me in my living-space.

    • Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

      Hi Cindy 🙂 A month or so ago I stumbled into a Casita Rally. Everyone in the Rally adopted me and called me a S.O.B (some other brand)! The Casita people were fabulous, caring people…just like RVSue! I was invited to all the pot lucks, instructional seminars and everything they did. Had a great time.

      • Cindy in OR says:

        Hi Krystina, I’m just down the road in Eugene! How fun that you stumbled into a rally – I’d love to be an S.O.B 🙂

  26. Applegirl NY says:

    It looks like we all love your eagle picture.

    I’m glad too, that you follow your intuition regarding boondocking. Why ruin your wonderful, peaceful forest adventure with anxiety.

    It’s great that the campers and weekenders were nature lovers and also enjoyed the peace and quiet of the mountain lake. I know when we’re in the back country the folks are different than those in more populated park areas. They’re there to hike, fish and enjoy the starry nights around the campfire, and they are less prone to partying and making lots of noise.

    Safe travels!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Applegirl,

      I think you’re right about the behavior of campers being related to the locale. I got the impression that several of the people picnicking, fishing, and/or camping overnight were locals, not people traveling . . . on the way to the beach or whatever.

      Yes, the eagle wins! The gull loses, although I like his little knees.

      • Pamela K. in GA says:

        Agree the Eagle wins! That photo is stellar!
        Poor Gull loses. The Gull reminds me of Bridget, lol, big chest…skinny legs! 🙂 But we love her just the same, skinny legs and all! She is a pretty girl when she is not hiding… 🙂

  27. Lynn Brooks says:

    What beautiful pictures!!
    That Bald Eagle is magnificent!!!
    Thank you for sharing!!!

  28. Pam says:

    Your trust in your own instinct is spot on. There’s an excellent book called “The Gift of Fear” which advocates scientifically for doing just that. Author makes his point with numerous studies and anecdotes, that hunches, gut feelings and “intuition” are all based on subtle clues and reference points that our conscious logical modern brains ignore at our own peril. Anyway, I found you saying that a really interesting thing to share. Go, you! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Pam,

      The older I get the more I listen to my intuition and premonitions. I like to think that the choices I make on the road…. stay or go…. turn left or right…. this campground or keep going to the next campground…. talk to that person or not… whatever… are “gentle decisions.”

      In other words, I like to move through each day as if guided, for I truly believe I am when I allow it to happen that way.

  29. Terrie G says:

    Thank you, Sue, for your blog. I’ve been reading if for 3 months and, today, felt that I could add something to the string. Your narration and your photos are brilliant! I’m truly inspired and want to visit all the sites you’ve described. I love to boondock and have 225 Watts of solar panels. Even though I have a 32 ft motor home, there are plenty of spots big enough for me! Your advice is thoughtful and very much appreciated. Thanks again for providing your readers a way to share and learn.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Terrie!

      I’m glad to have you riding along with me and my crew. I enjoy sharing the great camps we find as we travel the west.

      Good for you (and for your neighbors) for going solar!

      Thanks for the compliment on my posts and photos. BTW, I hope you feel welcome to comment whenever you feel like it. It’s nice to know you’re here!

    • Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

      Welcome Terrie to RVSues blog. It is a great place to start your morning.

  30. Sheila Reeves says:

    We are just south of Rockaway beach and have a perfect spot to park your Casita. We are not home for a few weeks but you are welcome to use it in our absence. If you want to use it just e-mail me.


    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Sheila. I don’t know where Rockaway Beach is but we’re no longer on the coast. It was nice of you to invite us.

  31. Nancy from South Georgia says:

    Sue’s adventures inspired me to quit dreaming and get out and do what I felt compelled to do. I went out one afternoon and came home with my 24-foot Class C motor home, without having consulted husband. He just came home from work and there was a big RV taking up the entire driveway. He walked in the house, thinking we had visitors, looking around. And I said, “honey, I need to talk to you about something…” and it got really interesting after that! But he’s okay with it now. We’ve been to Michigan and Louisiana together in it and I’ve been to Michigan and back to Georgia by myself in it four times. That time is just for me and it’s when I do my thinking while driving, and it’s how I’ve learned what I can do on my own. I love every minute of it and look forward to the day he can retire. And if he doesn’t want to go and see when he retires, but would rather stay in his recliner at home and watch sports, well then, I’ll call him every few days from the road.

    • Cindy in OR says:

      Go Nancy!

    • Pamela K. in GA says:

      Good heavens you sound like me! Sisters from a different Mother, lol.
      Love your sense of self and your get it handled attitude. You GO Girl!
      My best friend, Barb, and I would take off for the beach and leave the husbands behind for as long as 30 days! Loved every minute of it! I lost her to Cancer a few years back and miss her dearly. I have no doubt she is up-there grinning at your spunk too 🙂
      May The ROAD be kind to you always!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Nancy!

      Somehow I almost missed your comment. You rock! Wow! I love that you Live What You Love as Pamela said below….

  32. Pamela K. in GA says:

    Well, what can I say that hasn’t already been said?
    That Eagle photo is one of the best I have EVER seen anywhere. And that is saying a lot since I see photos all the time on Flickr and other photo sites.
    And this camp you were in, pure magic!!! Loved everything about it. The fishing platforms called my name the minute I saw them! Love the many places for people to sit and relax too. Seems many parks and campgrounds have all but forgotten the fine art of just sitting out among nature.
    And Bridget, she was really hoofing it! I was very impressed!
    Now I guess I should put this special day, was #1, to rest and head off to bed. It’s 12:40 here. My the days fly by! Even more reason to Live What You Love 🙂

  33. Jodee Gravel on the road in Bodega Bay, CA says:

    Glad to see you three handled that mighty trail with ease – and the common sense of turning around 🙂 There’s something about a forest near the ocean that is so special. We’re taking a day trip through one today near Bodega Bay, CA! Anytime I don’t pay attention to my intuition I regret it – as Mom said “When you hear the scary music, don’t go in the basement.” Looking forward to more fun on the beach with the crew.

  34. Mornin Sue!

    Happy Friday 🙂

    • ….which is meaningless to you, more important to me! haha!

      So, how about Happy Day to You! instead!!

    • Good Morning Marla, happy Friday to you. Are we having coffee together today? Hazelnut for me…. Someday, lets really have a cup of coffee together, at the beach! You know that is always a standing invitation, if I am in town…Next year I hope to be on the road in my very own motorhome…whoopppeee! Anyway, enjoy your day. 🙂 BTW, I love all the smilely faces. 🙂 🙂 🙂

      • Mornin, Shirlene!!

        Here’s a few more for you 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 ….I love them, too!

        Yes, coffee one day for sure, I haven’t forgotten! Enjoy your day, hope you have a great weekend as well! 🙂 another one for good measure!

  35. eliza says:

    Hi RVSue – I began reading your blog last week and just finished. It is so wonderful! I’m living vicariously because I am recently retired but still doing some work part-time and my husband still works. Really want the Oliver trailer to do months-long trips at differing times of year. Thank you for the inspiration!

    • Fun reading wasn’t it. 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Eliza. And welcome to my blog! Wow! Only a week and you’re all caught up with us. I take that as a compliment. Thanks for letting us know you are riding with us and for sharing a bit about yourself.

    • Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

      Welcome Eliza. You are now an official Bloggerino 🙂

      • eliza says:

        thanks for the welcome! yeah, for the past week I haven’t spoken much to my husband. I think he might be getting annoyed. This has been as riveting and as much fun as reading A Wrinkle in Time when I was 10!
        Sue, I did want to ask if you ever wrote about the way you chose particular options on the BLT? I missed that post maybe….
        Thank you again…..

        • eliza says:

          also, I cheated and did not read all the comments…..just the most recent couple of days….

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          That’s funny, my blog compared to A Wrinkle in Time…. LOL!

          I don’t know if I ever discussed why I chose certain options. Maybe briefly but not thoroughly. I remember writing about not having the furnace installed because I knew I was going solar and a furnace requires electric hook-up or a generator. Also furnaces can be noisy! I planned to have the propane heater instead. For boondocking I added the option of larger tanks. For travel over rough and rutted roads to get to those boondocks, I chose the high-lift axle with the larger tires. The A/C comes standard with the Casita. I didn’t think I’d need it, and I haven’t, but there have been days I’ve been glad I had it. I don’t use my awning much. I’m glad I have it though. It has made a few hot afternoons comfortable.

          Someday I should discuss the topic fully. Thanks for mentioning it.

          BTW, Barbara has a message for you under the next post.

  36. Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

    What a nice, peaceful, green, water view site! So happy you found it. Nice that all the “happy campers’ were happily quiet as well. The kids look like they are having a blast! And you had a nice break. Perfect. I sure know what you mean about finding suitable campsites. Everyday I look to see where I will go next if I ever get out of here. Coming up short. Do you know if you can overnite in a scenic view, lookout point? I have had lots of folks tell me you could. Now lets see what I can find to do today.


    • Hi Krystina, get out your Benchmark and spend the day with a magnifying glass looking up campsites! That should take you well into the afternoon, and of course we are always here just in case you want to start up a conversation. 🙂 🙂 more smilely faces….

      • Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

        Good Morning Shirlene…Yep, I am still figuring out how to read those Benchmark maps! Look at them most days and then go online to look things up. And, yes, it does take up a lot of time…which is VERY good right now! Have a super day!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, Krystina,

      I don’t know about camping at a lookout point. I never looked into that because I wouldn’t want to do it. I stop driving early in the day and I wouldn’t want looky-loos driving in and out around my camp. Maybe someone will let us know if that’s allowed.

      I don’t know where you want to go, short or long term. I’ll be glad to offer suggestions if you’d like some help. You’re in a difficult area, but you have wheels. 🙂 If you’d rather find your own way, I certainly understand.

      • Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

        My plan was to drive along the coasts of CA, OR, WA which is still what I plan to do when I finally get out of here. As a newbe, I never considered what the cost of that plan would be…and I thought I was ready to be on the road HA! Looking at my Benchmark everyday. Maybe when I am finally free of the “worry” I will be more alert when cruising the Benchmark.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I haven’t seen you do anything to indicate you weren’t “ready to be on the road.” What messed you up as far as keeping your budget contained is going to California. I’m in the 4th year on the road and I’m still not ready to travel the coast of California. I think it’s more difficult to be thrifty when your rig is a Class C with no toad. And then you were hit with this medical stuff early in your full-timing and yet you’ve handled the logistics very well. I don’t know what road you took from the coast to Corvallis — That’s a super challenge in itself!

          If you want to return to the Oregon coast, I can suggest Blackberry Campground ($8) and you know about Tillicum Beach for the most inexpensive camps. Your rig is too big for Hebo Lake. As for the coast of Washington, I think it’s easier to approach from the Hood Canal area on the east side where there are Olympic NF campgrounds (WA state parks are expensive!) and work your way up to Sequim and Port Angles, continuing as far as you wish around the peninsula. To go along northern Oregon coast to Astoria and around from the west means a lot of driving in trees between camps and without a view of the ocean.

          We camped at these NF campgrounds, inland from water — Hamma Hamma (Eldon), Rainbow (Quilcene), and Heart of the Hills (Port Angeles).

          You’re at a point where it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Hang on to your confidence. From the skills you’ve shown so far, you’ll get over this and be on your way…

          • Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

            Good Morning RVSue and Crew! Thank you sooo much for all that information. I have it all written down. What I meant when I said I “wasn’t ready to be on the road” was that I did not do any research on anything money wise about CA, OR, WA. or the difficulty of finding campsites. Not to mention that I just glanced at Rt 1 and said “oh, I will just follow Rt. 1 all the way to Washington! HA…easier said then done. But I am learning now. Have a great day. Hug the kids for me.

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              Good morning, Krystina,

              I see now what you meant. Chalk it up to experience and don’t look back. Ha!

              Traveling the coasts of CA, OR, and WA in one year is a huge undertaking… consuming money and energy. You could “save” the coast for another year . . .

            • Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

              Live and learn! I just hope I live long enough to learn it all!! LOL

            • rvsueandcrew says:


  37. Krystina - Corvallis Oregon says:

    Drat, my bad, I forgot to say that I MISSED YOU TOOOOO. I also have to say the “the family” was a BIG help to me with what I have been going through. Love you all!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Krystina… Yeah, the folks who come here are pretty special. . . including you!

  38. GOOD MORNING SUE! Man, I lke saying that. I am really glad you are back, at least I hope you are back. Having my morning coffee with the blogorinos! I hope you are enjoying coffee also. Great conversations on this post, you know I think this blog keeps getting better and better, or is it just me! I love it here, it is my home away from home sometimes. Love you all!

  39. Terri From Texas says:

    Howdy again,
    Don’t know if Cate will ever see this comment but I will give her my two cents. As a long time money saver/hoarder (ha) I have read zillions of financial books and web advice columns simply because I saw my mom ending up subsisting only on social security after my Dad passed. She got a job when she was seventy and while I know she enjoyed it I certainly don’t want to be working at that age. I digress – what I want to say is It is NEVER A GOOD IDEA TO CASH OUT A PENSION! If you can, save like crazy for what you want but keep that pension! My opinion of course but backed up by lots of good advice! Take care!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I agree, Terri!

    • cate walsh says:

      Hi Terri,

      I checked just one more time today and saw your post. OK, GF…I hear you about the pension. I promise not to cash it out. Right now its projected to give me only $ 360.00 a month income (9 yrs worth of employment at current job) but added to a SS Ck that would be an ok monthly income if I’m frugal. Its in the company annuity…since you’ve done financial research…should I look at moving it to a different vehicle? Don’t worry, I will seek “expert” advice too. Depending on my health, I might try workamping a little too to have a nest egg for emergencies, etc.
      What do you think? I appreciate your thoughts,
      Cate W.

  40. Velda in Roseville Ca says:

    A $$ suggestion might be to consider applying to be a camp host or working at a park for a free site for a month or two which would let you dollar cost average your fuel costs. Enjoy an area for a while then spend fuel to drive to a new area. It can help,with a limited budget and I know other single women as well as couples who do that.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      That’s a solution for some folks. I don’t know if you’re directing this at Krystina or not… She won’t mind me saying, since she’s mentioned it before herself . . . She uses an electric scooter beyond short walking distances. Workkamping isn’t an option.

      I mention Krystina’s situation as an illustration to point out that being dependent upon workkamping for financial stability is touch-and-go due to health issues. It can be great for short term rehabilitation of the bank account as Velda suggests or for couples when one can take up the slack if the other should become unable to work.

      Again, my view of things… Others may disagree. Lots of folks workkamp for many years and love it!

      • eliza says:

        I like the idea of workamping to be able to spend time in an area and really get to know it. I haven’t seen (other than in situations where people do a lot of really hard physical labor and spend a lot of time doing it) that people can really make good money this way. I think the comment might have been more for Cate. I think that it is by far the best to not have debt when you begin the journey (get an older rig maybe) but don’t bite into your pension because you will need that more later on than you do now, and will have fewer options…

      • Velda in Roseville Ca says:

        Actually directed to Anyone who is concerned with money and travel, particularly a new gal who was asking. And a cart is NOT a no go for all work camping. I know of women who are given spots to park close to office or work place and jobs sitting doing paper work or filing or whatever. Right position for the right position can work.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Good that you mention that, Velda. I didn’t think about the variety of choices there are.

  41. Chey says:

    Northern Lights tonight (6/24) best between midnight and 3 for those in the Pacific Northwest

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