Monday, September 26, 2011


In the beginning of our blog we talked about our motto...Simplify.  We spent a lot of time simplifying by getting rid of the clutter in our lives...the big house and almost everything in it, the extra clothes, the extra kitchen items, the extra tools, etc.  Now we've come to a point where it's time to simplify again but in a different way.  This time simplify means being able to cook a bigger meal and have leftovers for another day or two; not needing to go to the grocery store several times a week; spending much less time moving things back and forth from underneath the RV to the Jeep when it's time to move; spending much less time looking for things and moving them around in the small spaces we have; being able to buy things in bulk packs to save money and trips to the store; being able to invite friends over for dinner even when it's pouring down rain or 110 degrees...

So in this spirit of simplifying we introduce the newest member of our RV family (which we will pick up today)...

2001 Monaco Windsor - Diesel - Class A

Til next time...happy trails!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Heading South With The Geese!

Can it really be fall already?  Yesterday, the official first day of fall, we took a fabulous hike in the White Mountains, NH on the Welch-Dickey Loop Trail and there it is really starting to look like fall by the colors on the trees.  We only had a day in the Whites with a beautiful hike and drive around the area.  We've decided next time we're up here we definitely want to spend some time in this area as there are so many beautiful hiking trails and places to see in this great forest.

But now the time has come for us to start heading south.  Campgrounds in the Northeast are beginning to make their closing plans for the season and we've had to use our heat a few too many times already!  We are so glad we chose to spend some time in Maine as we've enjoyed every moment of it.  This area of southern Maine is so very different from where we stayed with my cousin, but it is certainly beautiful in it's own way.  We spent a few days in Portland - what a great city!  The coast of Maine is gorgeous and we were fortunate to see several spectacular sunrises, lighthouses galore and the beauty of the ocean.  Oh yeah, let's not forget the great "lobstah" eating!  The seafood here is amazing!  We even enjoyed an excellent Sushi dinner in Portland thanks to Vivian & Ken!  Yummy!   

On Monday we leave our campground with an overnight in NH, an overnight in a truck stop (or Wal-Mart!) Tuesday night on the way to NJ for an arrival near Sea Isle on Wednesday.  It will be nice to be back in a familiar area.  We plan to hop back to PA for a short time before heading on to VA, NC, SC and FL for the winter.  Til next time...happy trails!  


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Maine - what a beautiful state!

Although this is not the first time we've been to Maine, we're still amazed by the beauty and remoteness of many areas.  We had a wonderful 2 weeks "camping" at my cousin's house near Bangor and truly enjoyed the surrounding areas.  Here are a few of the highlights:

Baxter State Park and Mount Katahdin
We made it to the top this time!!!  After Hurricane Irene passed the weather was beautiful for our 2nd attempt on Mt. Katahdin (the 1st time was unsuccessful in 2008 due to the tail of a hurricane in the area).  On August 31 we made it to the top!  We went up the Hunt Trail (AT - Appalachian Trail) and down the Saddle.  As we started the climb the day was beautiful but quite windy compared to the weather forecast of 5-10mph winds (which brought back memories of the last time on the mountain with strong winds).  As we finally made it over the hump of large boulders to the Table Lands (nice flat area for the last stretch until the summit) the winds started to subside and by the time we made it to the top the weather was picture perfect!  Bright sunny skies, clouds off in the distance and little to no winds.  We ended up spending an hour on the summit enjoying our lunch and time with several others enjoying the day on top.  There were many people ending the AT on this day after being on the trail for 5 months.  I cannot even begin to imagine the feeling they were having at that time.  We overheard one couple saying it was not sinking in yet and probably would not until they started to use a flush toilet again.  How different life will be after spending 5 months in the wilderness and then back to reality again.  

Click here for more pictures of Katahdin and Baxter State Park

Acadia, Lubec and Quoddy Head State Park
We spent several days driving around the area to view the beautiful coast of Maine.  We took a trip to Schoodic Peninsula (the other part of Acadia not many people visit which is just as beautiful but without the crowds), the town of Lubec  (the eastern most town in the US) and West Quoddy Head (the eastern most point in the US).  Now we know 3 additional points we must make it to - southern most (Key West, FL), northern most (Northwest Angle, MN) and western most (Cape Alava, WA).  The hiking in Quoddy Head State Park was amazing.  First we took the inland trail which meandered through thick Pine forests and brought us out to the rocky and breezy coast.  The smell of Pine with the salt ocean air is something which needs to be bottled. 

Quoddy Head State Park

Green Point - Quoddy Head State Park

Hunting Camp
We took a 3 day trip with my cousin, Lamar, to a hunting camp he spends time at each year.  This cabin reminded us so much of the cabin we miss dearly near Hegins, PA (where we were engaged).  A great little place tucked away in the woods with total privacy and beauty surrounding it.  On the way to camp we took a nice drive around the area in search of moose - no luck.  :-(  We found out we're about 3 weeks early to see them roaming around as they are in hiding before the rut.   

We stopped at Moxie Falls where we took a hike to these beautiful falls while drinking our Moxie soda which is made in the area (let's just say it's a soda I don't really need to try again but Tom sort of liked it).

We also reached a point we didn't know was in Maine - the halfway point between the Equator and The North Pole - pretty cool!  It's amazing how much is out there to see and do which we have no idea is there. It's so wonderful to be able to see so many incredible things.  

We were scheduled to take a canoe trip down the Kennebec River but due to the amount of rain (although nothing like that in PA ) we were unable to float with the river being a tad too high for our comfort level.  We may have ended up in PA on a day trip!  Instead we spent time hiking around camp, relaxing and enjoying the quiet.  Lamar showed me how to make a cobbler over the fire using the hot coals on top of a dutch oven.  Now doesn't this look yummy!  
I even had a guided 4-wheeler tour with Austin.  He was the perfect guide and kept his eye on me to make sure I was ok! 

On Thursday we left our cozy home at Lamar & Betsy's and are now in Wells, Maine (approx. 30 miles south of Portland).  It's not quite the remote area up north was but it's pretty in it's own way.  We will have almost 3 weeks here to explore the area and perhaps even get in some beach time.  Til next time...happy trails!