Page 2 of OffOurRocker Travel Blog Posts

North America » United States » Arizona » Page July 1st 2015

Monday, 29 June, 2015 Bob and Gena left early on their way east, while we will continue west then south. They had commitments they had to get home for. We miss them already. We drove back through Vernal, with all the pretty flowers, then on to Roosevelt, where we stopped for fuel at a Pilot. But their pumps didn't work and we had to go elsewhere. As we headed south we went over a pass that was over 9100 feet high. It was a pretty steep grade and we were moving pretty slowly by the time we reached the top. The downhill was much faster, but seemed to go on forever. We finally reached the interstate and a little rainfall that dropped the temperature from 97 to 69 degrees, then back up to 94 within twenty ... read more
Bryce Canyon NP
Bryce Canyon NP
Bryce Canyon NP

North America » United States » Utah » Vernal June 28th 2015

Sunday, 28 June, 2015 We left Lyman and drove down Hwy 414 and 43 to Manila, UT, and then Hwy 44 to the dam at Flaming Gorge. What a drive! It was wonderful scenery, buy bumpy roads to Manila, then steep, steep ups and downs to the dam. At the Flaming Gorge visitor center they said the road to Vernal, UT, was worse, but it definitely was not. That road (Hwy 191) did have 10 switchbacks (u-turns,) but it was mostly downhill, not those engine-screaming uphills to Flaming Gorge. Vernal was so pretty. They have placed planters of pink, white and red flowers all through town. We drove to Dinosaur National Monument, where we first checked out the visitor center while Jenna got her 6th Jr. Ranger badge. We then rode their shuttle to the Quarry ... read more
southwestern Wyoming
Southwestern Wyoming
Nearing Manila, UT

North America » United States » Wyoming » Lyman June 27th 2015

Saturday, 27 June, 2015 We left the campground this morning and drove to Craters of the Moon National Monument, about 20 miles from Arco, ID. It is comprised of 750,000 acres of lava. Lava in the form of cinder cones, lava tubes, lava caves, spatter cones, and both smooth flowing (pahoehoe) and rubble-like ('a'a) lava. The area started having eruptions about 15,000 years ago, the latest being about 2,000 years ago. This was not the result of one or two volcanoes, but a series of deep fissures known as the Great Rift. Scientists do think more eruptions are likely. The plants growing from the lava gives the area an other-worldly look. We then drove across southeast Idaho through Blackfoot and Pocatello to southwest Wyoming. We drove through some beautiful valleys green with fields of wheat, hay, ... read more
Craters of the Moon
Craters of the Moon
Craters of the Moon

Sunday, 21 June, 2015 We enjoyed a lazy morning then drove to Jenny Lake. The visitor center was not nearly as crowded as yesterday. We then drove up Signal Mountain with its panoramic views before heading back for showers and dinner. Monday, 22 June We had problems with the electric jack on the camper, as in, it was dead. We finally managed to crank it manually using vice grips. The drive to Yellowstone was magnificent. There was a line of cars and campers waiting to get into the park, but it moved fairly well. We stopped at Grants Village to call Peggy and Barbara for their birthday. There are only 3 or 4 cell towers in the whole park, so cell service is spotty at best. Once at Bridge Bay campground we set up the camper, ... read more
Yellowstone National Park

Thursday, 18 June, 2015 We left Casper, WY, and drove out highway 220 to Independence Rock, a large rock formation where travelers on the way west carved their names in the granite. We were last there in 1989, and then there was just a dirt road to the rock. Now there is a rest area and paved pathways. A little further down the road, we stopped at Devil's Gate, a pass through the mountains carved by the Sweetwater River. We drove on to Rawlins and took I-80 west to Rock Springs, then highway 191 south to Fire Hole Campground in Flaming Gorge NRA. The road down to the campground from the highway was over 9 miles long, and Kerry was sure it was the wrong road. Once we got there, though, it was as beautiful as ... read more
about Independence Rock

North America » United States » Wyoming » Casper June 17th 2015

Monday, 15 June, 2015 After thunderstorms overnight, we woke to a beautiful morning. We drove to Chadron, NE, where we went past the house where Bob's grandparents used to live. Then it was north to South Dakota. At Wind Cave National Monument Jenna saw her first buffalo. We drove to Oreville Campground in the Black Hill National Forest south of Hill City, where we set up camp. We then went to Mount Rushmore, one of our favorite parks. Jenna got her 3rd Junior Ranger Badge there. Tuesday, 16 June Today is our 44th wedding anniversary. The five of us piled into our truck and headed out for adventures. Our first stop was Custer State Park, where we drove the Wildlife Trail. The first half was disappointing as all we saw were prairie dogs. But we finally ... read more
Buffalo in a mudhole
Kerry and Jenna
Jenna and the presidents

North America » United States » Nebraska » Chadron June 14th 2015

Saturday, 13 June, 2015 We had heavy fog this morning at ye olde truck stop, but the skies cleared quickly. It was a quiet night for a truck stop campground, but got busy fairly early this morning. We drove a few miles west from Beatrice to Homestead National Monument. The visitor center has wonderful displays of the life of the homesteaders who settled in Nebraska and elsewhere after the Homestead Act of 1862. The Homestead Act offered 160 acre tracts of land free to people who were willing to live and work the land. There were displays of tools, furniture, clothing, and farm and home implements. They also had a cabin that belonged to the Freeman family, that owned the 160 acres where the park now sits. Jenna got her first Jr. Ranger badge there. From ... read more
Jenna, Jr. Ranger
Early farm equipment
Freeman Cabin

North America » United States » Nebraska » Beatrice June 12th 2015

Thursday, 11 June, 2015 Another trip begins. This year our granddaughter, Jenna, is ten and will be traveling with us. My cousins, Gena and Bob, arrived at our house yesterday afternoon. We were still trying to get the trailer loaded and it was a hot, sticky day for it. As we were finishing supper, Michael and Jamie came by with Jenna's bicycle, and stayed for a short visit. We all showered and headed for bed early. Thursday morning we were up early, had a hearty breakfast casserole, and finished packing the camper. David came by and brought us some of his beef jerky for the trip, and helped us hook up the camper to the truck. Kim brought Jenna and we got all her gear loaded before heading out, sweating like mules in the muggy morning ... read more
Clarence Cannon Dam
Mark Twain Lake
Big wrenches

North America » United States » Missouri » Wentzville July 1st 2014

Monday, 30 June, 2014 This was to be our last day in Custer. A quick trip to get the camper repaired, then a visit to Jewel Cave, back in time for Sean to swim at the campground, then the turn for home tomorrow. It didn't quite turn out that way. I mentioned the rough roads due to construction once we neared Custer on Saturday afternoon. Once we got set up at the campground, we realized something was terribly wrong. Somehow we had lost the hub and the bearings off one wheel of the camper. We were lucky we hadn't lost the whole wheel while bouncing through the wilds of western South Dakota. We knew there was nothing we could do about the damage until the repair shop opened for business on Monday morning, so we went ... read more
Badlands NP
Badlands NP
Badlands NP

Saturday, 28 June, 2014 As we drove north from Douglas to Gillette, we spotted a lot of pronghorns. I don't know whether they are more plentiful up here (I believe they are) or if we are getting better at spotting them (that, too.) The beautiful green rolling hills of eastern Wyoming prairie spread as far as the eye can see. There are long trains here, too, but instead of being loaded with containerized freight, they are filled with coal from the mines around Gillette. We passed a few of the mines today. All morning the sky was full of puffy white clouds, which grew darker and denser as the day wore on. At Gillette, we turned east onto I-90 for a few miles before turning north to Devil's Tower National Monument. Sean seemed impressed by the ... read more
Devil's Tower National Monument
Kids have to climb on rocks
Devil's Tower

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