When we planned our escape leaving Washington, we were unsure of the exact day of departure tied to the final closing of house sale for my dad.  Planning our route to South Dakota, many of the campgrounds we would generally try to reserve were already booked out for the timeframes we needed.; which meant we were scrambling to find any spot along our route we could find.  We left Washington, heading East on July 23rd. We went over Hwy 12 (White Pass.) If you have not taken this route, you need to; it was so beautiful. We even took the time to stop once we got to the other side and had lunch at Rimrock Lake- during our stop, Mark noted there were some oil splotches on the car traced it back to the motorhome and what looked like oil blowback through the fill tube (more on this later).

Making our way east through Washington, we spent one night in Sunnyside and kept on moving. We came through Plummer; Idaho spent a few nights at a new campground called Soaring Hawk; the views were spectacular. This was the first night on this leg of our adventure that we didn't have full hookups. We had everything except for sewer. After leaving Plummer, we ventured into Winchester, Idaho, and stayed at Winchester State Park; this was a treat as many State parks cannot accommodate a rig as large as ours. We had a wonderful time. We did a lot of exploring as the park had a lot to keep us busy.  As with many State Parks, the Park did not offer full hookup (water & electric only), but we managed to really enjoy ourselves and met some new friends. 

Last but not least, after leaving Winchester, we pulled into Cottonwood, Idaho, our 3rd stop in a row without full hookups. We went over a week without the extra luxuries of home. That is where I gained the name "Glamping Princess." Because we had no sewer hook up, we had to take our laundry into a laundromat, and that's where we met the owner of Speedway Laundromat. What a great guy, it was fun hearing his story, and while there, Izzy got a bath! The cute little setup he had was perfect for a doggie bath. If in the area, it's worth checking out.

Once we left Cottonwood, we made the trip through beautiful Hells Canyon, Idaho. If you have never made this drive, please consider it. It was so beautiful the pictures don't even do it justice. As we were driving, I jotted down a few names of campgrounds that we will be going back to as I want to raft down the Snake River.

After discussing online with other Monaoco owners, Mark determined what was causing the oil blowback problem. We took a side trip into Boise to complete routine maintenance and replace a clogged crankcase breather element. Oh, wait, before we pulled out of Bosie, the repair shop informed us that evening one of our rear slideouts quit working and probably needed a new motor or gear set to be replaced. Mark confirmed the problem and said he would check it out later, but we were limited to only having ½ the rear slideouts working – the good part was at least the broken slideout was stuck in the closed position allowing us to travel. (More to come on that!) 

We left Bosie and made our way to Caldwell, Idaho, to one of our favorite campgrounds called Ambassador. While we were here, we did a nice bike ride and took a side trip to Ste. Chapelle Winery, for an afternoon of wine tasting. This is a great winery, but I will confess the temps outside were a bit on the high side, so we should have chosen a table inside.

 Another thing that Mark did while we were at this campground, he fixed the slideout that was broken. It got him into a few tight spots under our bed, but eventually, he figured it out, ordered the correct replacement gear instead of a whole new motor, and got us back in working order.   

On Tuesday, August 10th, we left Caldwell, headed to American Falls, Idaho, and stayed at Willow Bay Resort, a nice campground. The sites here were enormous; we were located next to a reservoir, which we were told that this year the water level was the lowest it had ever been due to a lack of snowpack in the mountains over the past two years. Nonetheless, we enjoyed our stay.

We left Idaho to make a short detour into Utah, where we stayed in Tremonton at another campground (Aspen Grove) that we had done a stop-over last year; we wanted to come back and spend just a bit of time exploring the area. While in Tremonton, we explored Odgen, Utah, and Logan, Utah. We also made a day trip into Bear Lake. While in Utah, we did experience a lot of smoke from the wildfires.

Leaving Utah, we did meander into Wyoming for a few days. Again, the places that we stayed were off the grid, but we still explored and tried to see things that would be fun and maybe a little educational too.

We stayed in Lyman, Wyoming, Rawlins, Wyoming, and then last but not least, Douglas, Wyoming. We visited museums, POW camps, Flaming Gorge National Park, Ayers Natural Bridge, and the Old Wyoming State Penitentiary.

Then on August 29th, we packed up and made our way to Rapid City, South Dakota. Even though we have been here a few times, it's always fun, the weather is enjoyable, and we can always find things to keep us busy.

Like today we made a side trip into Deadwood. We drove through Deadwood last year; however, we didn't get

out with the pandemic in full force. Today we parked the car, walked the streets, and even visited a casino. Deadwood is a cute little town to see if you are ever in the area.

We will be departing Spearfish tomorrow, 9/8/2021, where we spent two nights at the Spearfish City RV Park. This Park was so great. A lovely little creek/river, trails for walking, biking, and running. Big enormous trees for shade. We loved this place so much; we will be back next year for a more extended stay!

We will be departing out of here bright and early tomorrow morning for Colorado.




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