Well, well, look who's here? Bob is going to help me do a recap of what we've done in the past 4-1/2 months. We figure we're a little over half-way into our trip (139 days). Our best estimate is that we've driven over 14,000 miles in 20 states.
Let's take stock of where we've been and what we've been doing. From January 1 to June 29, 2019, I have walked 706.5 miles, well on my way to my walking goal of 1,000 miles this year. [Hint: We've been so busy, I haven't written a blog in over two months!]
Before we get started on all the details, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY SISTER, JANYCE. She went to a birthday breakfast with Mom, my brother Frank, and my sis-in-law Gina at La Provence restaurant in Lake Grove, Oregon, this morning.
One of my favorite things: I absolutely love springtime. The way we planned our trip, we had spring all the way from Tennessee to the Finger Lakes Region of New York. For those first three months, each location we visited had dogwoods, azaleas, rhododendrons, roses, hydrangeas, lilies, snowball bushes, and many other flowers in bloom. It has been lovely.
Conventions (so far):
State Capitals (so far - in the order we walked them):
- Escapees Escapade RV rally, March 17-21, Pima County Fairgrounds, Tucson, Arizona.
- American Volkssport Association (AVA: America's Walking Club):
- Pre-Convention Walks:
- Portsmouth, New Hampshire, June 9
- Danvers, Massachusetts, June 10
- Springfield, Massachusetts, June 11
- Convention Walks:
- Albany, New York 5k fun walk with an ice cream social, June 11
- Cohoes/Waterford, New York, June 12
- Saratoga National Historical Park and Schuylerville, New York, June 13
- Downtown Albany, New York, June 14
- Post-Convention Walks:
- Cooperstown, New York, 6k, June 15
- Niagara Night Walk, New York, 5k, June 15
- Buffalo, New York, War of 1812 6k walk, June 16
- (Upcoming) U.S. FreedomWalk Festival, Arlington, Virginia, Oct. 19-21
- Phoenix, Arizona, March 23
- Nashville, Tennessee, April 9
- Atlanta, Georgia, April 19
- Columbia, South Carolina, April 23
- Raleigh, North Carolina, April 26
- Richmond, Virginia, April 29
- Trenton, New Jersey, May 6
- Annapolis, Maryland, May 10
- Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, May 13
- Providence, Rhode Island, June 3
- Hartford, Connecticut, June 4
- Boston, Massachusetts, June 7
- Concord, New Hampshire, June 8
- Albany, New York, June 14
Friends and family (in the order we visited):
- Rick and Jan Roemmick, Vail, Arizona
- Skip and Sally Mendenhall, Carefree, Arizona
- Charis and Mike Gulino, Scottsdale
- Louise Alton (visited us from Las Vegas)
- Laura Alton (visited us from Las Vegas)
- Charlie and Debbie Smith, Sun City, Arizona
- Sue Haynes (childhood friend and next-door neighbor for years), now in Rossville, Georgia
- Anna Cade (blogger friend), Raleigh, North Carolina
- Dave and Faye Malouf, Lums Pond, traveling in their 5th wheel and we found each other in the same campground at the same time.
- John Baumann, Bob's cousin, Newport News, Virginia
- Nicki and Paul Tiffany (long-time online friend), Delmarva Peninsula, Cape Charles, Virginia (their winter home)
- Cynthia Myers, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware (friend of a friend, now our friend, too.)
- Susan and Darren Medlin (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Mark Johnson (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Pat Roberts (formerly from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Mike and Kathy Schwencke (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Ellen Ott (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Susan and John Ives (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Andy Thomas (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Joanne and Carlin Forinash (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Derrill Rothermich (from El Paso) at Volksmarch Convention
- Audrey Vertucci (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Randy and Marge (from Texas) at Volksmarch Convention
- Susan and Joe Noonan (from San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Susan Fine (from Texas) at Volksmarch Convention
- Sammy Hunnicut and his wife (soon to be in San Antonio) at Volksmarch Convention
- Nicki and Paul Tiffany, Lyndonville, New York (their summer home)
Volksmarches completed (AVA: America's Walking Club):
What's Out There Weekend, Nashville Tours:
- March 14: Tucson, AZ - Saguaro East National Park, 10k
- March 15: Tucson - Sabino Canyon, 12k
- March 15: Tucson - Downtown/University, 11k
- March 23: Phoenix, AZ - Capital, 6k
- April 9: Nashville, TN - Capital, 12k
- April 10: Nashville - Music Row & Universities, 11k
- April 11: Nashville - Historic East Nashville, 5k
- April 16: Chattanooga, TN, 10k
- April 19: Atlanta, GA - Capital, 10k
- April 23: Columbia, SC - Capital, 10k
- April 23: Columbia - River Walk, 10k
- April 24: Charleston, SC - Historic, 10k
- April 26: Raleigh, NC - Capital (Downtown Wolfpack), 10k
- April 26: Raleigh, NC - North Carolina Museum of Art, 10k
- April 27: Durham, NC - Duke Univ., 10k
- April 29: Richmond, VA - Capital, 10k
- May 1: Newport News, VA - Noland Trail, 10k
- May 2: Williamsburg, VA - Colonial Williamsburg, 10k
- May 3: Jamestown, VA - Jamestowne National Park, 5k
- May 6: Trenton, NJ - Princeton Historic/Capital, 10k
- May 8: Dover, DE - Capital - YMCA, 10k
- May 9: Rehoboth Beach, DE - Town and boardwalk, 10k
- May 15: Harrisburg, PA - Capital, 10k
- May 15: Hershey, PA - Town, 10K
- May 18: New York City - Lower Manhattan, 12k
- May 20: New York City - Central Park, 11k
- May 21: New York City - Midtown, 12k
- May 22: New York City - Highline, Little Italy, Chinatown, Greenwich Village, 13k
- May 25: Highland, NY - Walkway Over the Hudson, 8k
- May 29: Kent, CT - Appalachian Trail, Housatonic River, 10k
- May 30: West Point, NY - US Military Academy at West Point, 10k
- May 30: Fort Montgomery, NY - Appalachian Trail, 5k
- May 31: Newport, RI - Scenic Cliff Walks, 10k
- June 1: Mystic, CT - Mystic, 10k
- June 3: Providence, RI - Capital walk, 10k
- June 4: Hartford, CT - Capital - River walk, 10k
- June 5: Fall River, MA - Battleship Cove Walk, 6k
- June 7: Boston, MA - Capital - Freedom Trail, 11k
- June 8: Concord, NH - Capital, 10k
- June 9: Portsmouth, NH - 10k
- June 9: Salem, MA - 5k
- June 10: Danvers, MA - Danvers Historical Walk, 6k
- June 11: Albany, NY - Evening fun walk at convention, 5k
- June 12: Cohoes/Waterford, NY - 11k
- June 13: Saratoga National Historical Park & Schuylerville, NY, 10k
- June 14: Albany, NY - Downtown capital, 6k
- June 15: Cooperstown, NY - 5k
- June 15: Niagara Falls, NY - Evening walk, 5k
- June 16: Buffalo, NY, 6k
- June 19: Lockport, NY - Erie Canal, 10k
- June 21: Youngstown, NY - War of 1812, 11k
- June 21: Williamsville (Amherst), NY, 10k
- June 22: Buffalo, NY - Pan-Am Buffalo, 10k
- June 23: Rochester, NY - Downtown, 5k
- June 24: Rochester, NY - Ontario Beach, 10k
- June 27: Rochester, NY - Highland Park, 5k
- July 2: Watkins Glen, NY, 10k
- July 4: Ithaca, NY - Cornell Univ., 10k
- July 19: Saratoga Springs, NY - Spa Park, 10k
- July 21: Chimney Point, VT - Champlain Bridge VT/NY, 10k
- July 24: Sacket's Harbor, NY - War of 1812, 10k
- July 24: Watertown, NY, 10k
- July 28: Cape Vincent, NY - Lighthouse Walk, 10k
- Belmont Mansion
- Music Row
- The Hermitage
- Clover Bottom Mansion
- Tennessee State University
- Cheekwood Estate & Gardens
Colleges and Universities (in the order we visited them):
- University of Arizona, Tucson
- Belmont University, Nashville
- Vanderbilt University, Nashville
- Tennessee State University, Nashville
- Georgia Tech, Atlanta
- Georgia State University, Atlanta
- University of South Carolina
- Charleston College, South Carolina
- North Carolina State, Raleigh, North Carolina
- Duke University, Durham, North Carolina
- William & Mary University, Williamsburg, Virginia
- Princeton University, New Jersey
- Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland
- New York University, Manhattan, New York
- West Point Military Academy, New York
- Salve Regina University, Newport, Rhode Island
- Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island
- Coast Guard Academy, New London, Connecticut
- Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
Rivers/Lakes/Harbors We Have Walked Across or Next to:
- Pima Air & Space Museum, Tucson, AZ.
- State Capital Museum, Phoenix, AZ.
- Graceland, Memphis, TN.
- Pink Palace, Memphis, TN.
- Lorraine Motel, Memphis, TN.
- Cotton Museum, Memphis, TN.
- Rock 'n' Soul Museum, Memphis, TN.
- Stax Soul Museum, Memphis, TN.
- Sun Studio, Memphis, TN.
- Casey Jones Village Museum, TN.
- Cheekwood Estate, Nashville, TN. (Susan only)
- The Mariner's Museum, Newport News, VA.
- Eastern Shore of Virginia Barrier Islands Center, Machipongo, VA.
- Historic Tredegar Iron Works, Richmond, VA.
- Civil War Museum, Richmond, VA (Bob only for the grand opening.)
- Historic State House, Dover, DE.
- Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, NY (Susan only).
- West Point Museum, Highland, NY.
- Mystic Seaport Museum, Mystic, CT.
- Herreshoff Marine Museum, Bristol, RI.
- Naval Academy Museum, Annapolis, MD.
- State House Museum, Annapolis, MD.
- Teddy Roosevelt Inaugural Site Museum, Buffalo, NY.
- The Locks District Museum, Lockport, NY.
- Erie Canal Discovery Center, Lockport, NY.
- Harrisburg Train Station, Harrisburg, PA.
- George Eastman Museum, Rochester, NY.
- Genesee Country Village & Museum, Mumford, NY.
- Glenn H. Curtiss Museum, Hammondsport, NY.
- Seneca Falls Visitor Center and Museum of Waterways and Industry, Seneca Falls, NY.
- Women's Rights National Historical Park Museum, Seneca Falls, NY.
- Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, NY.
- National Baseball Hall of Fame, Cooperstown, NY.
- New York State Museum, Albany, NY.
- Visitor Center and Museum, Ticonderoga, NY.
- Star Trek Sets Museum, Ticonderoga, NY. (Susan only.)
- Boldt Castle and Heart Island, Alexandria Bay, NY.
- Minna Anthony Common Nature Center, Wellesley Island State Park, NY.
- Cape Vincent Historical Museum, Cape Vincent, NY.
- Mississippi River (Memphis, TN)
- Cumberland River (Nashville, TN)
- Tennessee River (Chattanooga, TN)
- Congaree River (Columbia, SC)
- Ashley River (Charleston, SC)
- James River (Richmond, VA)
- Susquehanna River (Harrisburg, PA)
- Lums Pond (Bear, DE)
- Spa Creek (Annapolis, MD)
- Severn River (Annapolis, MD)
- Back Creek (Annapolis, MD)
- East River (on the Brooklyn Bridge, Manhattan, NY)
- Hudson River (Highland, NY)
|Walk Over the Hudson |
|Walk Over the Hudson bridge|
- Housatonic River (Kent, CT)
- Mystic River (Mystic, CT)
- Connecticut River (Hartford, CT)
- Easton Bay (Newport, RI)
- Taunton River (Fall River, MA)
- Charles River (Boston, MA)
- Boston Harbor (Boston, MA)
- Piscataqua River (Portsmouth, NH)
- South Mill Pond (Portsmouth, NH)
- South River (Salem, MA)
- Salem Harbor (Salem, MA)
- Mohawk River (Cohoes, NY)
- Hudson River (Albany, NY)
- Niagara River (Niagara Falls, NY)
- Buffalo River (Buffalo, NY)
- Erie Canal (Lockport, NY)
- Niagara River (Youngstown, NY)
- Ellicott Creek (Williamsville, NY)
- Genesee River (Rochester, NY)
- Taughannock Creek (Trumansburg, NY)
- Lake Champlain (Crown Point, NY)
- Sackett's Harbor (Sackett's Harbor, NY)
- Black River (Watertown, NY)
- St. Lawrence River (Wellesley Island, NY)
- The waterfall at Sabino Dam, Sabino Canyon, Tucson, AZ. The water was too high for us to hike all the way to Seven Falls, so we made do with the water flowing over the dam.
|Sabino Canyon Dam spillway/waterfall.|
- Garvan Woodland Gardens, Hot Springs, Arkansas. Aunt
- Cherokee and Hemlock Falls (Cloudland Canyons State Park, GA)
|Me by Cherokee Falls, GA|
|Did I mention we've done about a gazillion stairs|
hiking to all these waterfalls?
|We are at Hemlock Falls, GA.|
- Raymondskill Falls (Milford, PA)
- Dingman Falls (Dingmans Ferry, PA)
- Silverthread Falls (Dingmans Ferry, PA)
- Buttermilk Falls County Park (Walpack Township, NJ)
- Kent Falls (Kent, CT)
|Kent Falls, CT|
- Lower, Middle, and Upper Genesee Falls (Letchworth State Park, Mt. Morris, NY)
|Lower Falls (Letchworth S.P.)|
|Middle Falls (Letchworth S.P.)|
|Upper Genesee Falls (Letchworth S.P.)|
- Lower Falls, Middle Falls, Upper Falls (Stony Brook State Park, Dansville, NY)
- Glen Falls (Williamsville, NY)
- Hector Falls (Watkins Glen, NY)
- Shequaga Falls (Montour Falls, NY)
|Shequaga Falls, NY|
- Aunt Sarah's Falls (Montour Falls, NY)
|Bob in front of Aunt Sarah's Falls, NY|
- Eagle Cliff Falls (Havana Glen Park, Montour Falls, NY)
- Deckertown Falls (Montour Falls, NY)
- Twin Falls (Sugar Hill State Forest, NY) [Hardest to find of all the falls we saw!]
- Lucifer Falls, Lower/Enfield Falls (Robert H. Treman State Park, Ithaca, NY)
- Buttermilk Falls (Buttermilk Falls State Park, Ithaca, NY)
- Entrance Cascade, Minnehaha Falls, Cavern Cascade, Diamond Falls, Central Cascade, Glen of Pools, Pluto Falls, Rainbow Falls...a total of 19 waterfalls in two miles (Watkins Glen State Park, NY)
- Triphammer Falls (Cornell University, Ithaca, NY)
- Cascadilla Glen (numerous falls, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY)
- Ithaca Falls (Ithaca, NY)
- Taughannock Falls (Taughannock Falls State Park, Trumansburg, NY)
- Ludlowville Falls (Ludlowville, NY)
- Cowshed Falls [NOTE: We could not hike to Upper Falls at the end of the trail because of a landslide that closed the trail after the fourth bridge] (Fillmore Glen State Park, Moravia, NY)
- Chittenango Falls (Cazenovia, NY)
|Chittenango Falls, NY|
- Pratt's Falls (Manlius, NY)
- Bash Bish Falls (Bash Bish Falls State Park, Mt. Washington, MA [but hike to it from the NY trailhead, much easier]).
|Bash Bish Falls, MA|
- The Falls of Carillon/LaChute River Trail (Ticonderoga, NY)
We are now in Clayton, New York, near the St. Lawrence River/1000 Islands region and will soon head off to Lake Placid, New York, in the Adirondack Mountains.
- March 16: Pick up truck would not start at end of the day at Pima Air and Space Museum parking lot in Tucson, Arizona. We got kicked out of the grounds because they were closing for the day (company policy) without our truck. Stranded along a busy highway, we called Uber to pick us up and take us to the airport so we could rent a car. First thing the next morning (Sunday), we were back at Pima Air and Space Museum parking lot where a tow truck hauled us to a truck repair facility.
The repair shop did not open until Monday. Our truck was not fixed until Wednesday afternoon. They did a lot of testing and replaced the starter kit. A good samaritan from the Escapees convention towed our 5th wheel from the campground we were in to the Pima County Fairgrounds for the convention.
- April 6: Southaven, Mississippi (a suburb of Memphis): Tornado warning at 8:50 p.m. No tornado, but torrential rain and lots of thunder and lightning.
- April 8: Truck lost power on the freeway. Bob checked under the hood and found a hose had come off. He duct-taped it together and we limped the truck/5th wheel into a Ford dealership. The truck had a bad CAC tube. They were able to fix it that afternoon and we continued on our way.
- April 26: We were looking for a parking space for our 5th wheel in downtown Raleigh, NC. Bob was making a turn into a multi-level parking garage. His cow guard hit the ticket box and knocked the ticket dispenser faceplate off of it. He reported it to the attendant who called her boss. He drove over and said, "Don't worry about it."
- June 13: I developed severe upper abdominal pain on our walk in the afternoon. By evening, my pain was so severe, it felt like my upper abdomen was being ripped apart inside. I insisted Bob take me to the emergency room. After numerous tests and many hours in the E.R., I found out I have gallstones. They got better by 2:30 a.m. and they discharged me.
- June 29: We were at Genessee Country Village Museum. They were having an interactive event: walking on stilts. Bob decided to try. He was able to get up on the stilts and walked a few steps. He fell off one of the stilts and sprained his ankle. (It is finally better--July 19.)
- June 30: Bob was dumping our tanks on our way out of Genessee Country Campground. The dump station is at a narrow, two-way passage into and out of the park. We were stationary. A very long truck/5th wheel combination decided to try to get around us after they checked into the park. Bob had put in his side mirrors and the guy came really close to our truck. He looked at me in the passenger seat and nodded/smiled. I was afraid he was going to hit us, but he got his rig past where I was sitting. I thought everything would be okay.
All of sudden "CRUNCH"! He was trying to make a turn to the left at the end of our rig and there was a tree he needed to avoid. His tail swing hit our back rear passenger side of the 5th wheel. He took out our rear passenger safety light on the side, took off part of our molding, scraped a patch of bumper off, and the upper back of his 5th wheel hit our awning topper and yanked off our topper's end cap and made a long crack in our 5th wheel's fiberglass shell around where the awning topper connects to the shell of the 5th wheel. Yikes. Our RVs blocked the passage in/out of the campground while information was exchanged. They called their insurance company, who then called us. When we return to San Antonio, repairs will be made to our rig.
- July 20: We stopped at a parking area along I-87 in the Adirondacks on our way to Ticonderoga. The truck would not start up again. There was no AT&T service! Bob asked some guys in a pick-up if he could borrow their phone. They had Verizon which allowed us to call Good Sam Roadside Assistance. A tow truck came to tow the truck to a mechanic. We had to drop the 5th wheel in the parking area. It was 90 degrees and humid. We had no electric hookup to run the AC. I stayed with the 5th wheel and the cat. I opened all the windows and vents. An intermittent breeze helped ease the heat and humidity. Bob was gone for a few hours. He came back in the pickup. It had been repaired and we were good to continue on our way. It was the starter again! The mechanics told Bob that the starter was really hot and it shouldn't have been. They believe the starter that was put in in March was defective and recommended we find out if there was a warranty on it. If not, we should return it to the auto parts store chain where we bought it and at least get back the core charge. [UPDATE: Bob drove to O'Reilly Auto Parts store in Glens Falls, NY, and they partially refunded the amount of the defective starter.]
Animals we have seen on our journey include fox, wild turkeys, lots of white-tailed deer, two WHITE deer, a mink, osprey, bald eagle, groundhogs, snake, lizards, sandhill cranes, turtles, terns, seagulls, cormorants, grebes, ducks, hummingbirds, robins, red-winged blackbirds, American goldfinches, and cardinals.
Stay tuned for upcoming blogs. I'm going to have a free day tomorrow, so hopefully, I can write a couple more.