Category Archives: Travel

An Alaskan Tiny House (Part 3)

We left Boulder, Colorado mid-afternoon to reach Cheyenne by dinner. We wanted something local, of course, and a waitress at another more upscale, but booked restaurant, mentioned Sanford’s Grub and Pub – which proved a fine call. Simple food and a fun atmosphere just off the main drag. Pub and nostalgia theme with a slight touch of county fair…and easier on the pocketbook to boot (to pun a Wyoming theme).

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Inside Sanford’s Grub and Pub

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Apples and Winter

We recently made our annual fall trip to the apple orchards at nearby Cosby. We have visited several in the area over the years, but usually end up stopping at Carver’s, as well, for their wide selection.

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My wife is partial to Rome apples, particularly for cooking, and so we bought our usual bushel. A friend had mentioned that we needed to check out a new Carousel apple, and so we bought one and included it in a small bag of samples. Later, when we tried it, it was crisp and sweet and had a particularly good flavor – so we may have to return and¬†free a half bushel or so of them as well ūüôā

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Fall at Norris Lake

Fall leaves have begun to show their colors in East Tennessee. The rangers at Norris Dam State Park offer an inexpensive, hour-long excursion on Norris Lake in October via pontoon boat, and though gray and a bit drizzly when we went this week, the early hint of color made the hour drive worthwhile.

Long cedar clings to a rock ledge
Long cedar clings to a rock ledge
Vertical white blaze against the green
Vertical white blaze against the green

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Norris Dam was constructed in 1933 as the first project of the Tennessee Valley Authority to bring electricity and economic development to the area

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On Freedom and Bicycles

I grew up in the generation that knew bicycles and the¬†unparalleled freedom that they offered during those years before¬†we were¬†old enough to drive a car. Streets were safer. Towns more easily accessible, and I spent many a summer gone from dawn to dusk on those mysterious adventures common to boys of¬†a certain¬†age. My mother didn’t have to worry and I was free to explore beaches and waterways and neighborhoods as the day moved me.

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An Alaskan Tiny House (Part 2)

We had scheduled five days to travel from East Tennessee to Vancouver. The trip mapped about 2750 miles and we were going to take it easy. See a bit of the country as we made our diagonal way up to Seattle.

We left three hours late on a Sunday morning and took care of some business in Nashville, both of which meant that my thoughts of mid-Missouri had been optimistic, and we pulled into Paducah, Kentucky around 8:30 instead.

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Overland Expo EAST Pics

It was billed “the world’s most unique event for do-it-yourself adventure travel enthusiasts, with hundreds of session-hours of classes for 4-wheel-drive and adventure motorcycling, inspirational programs, the Overland Film Festival, roundtable discussions, demonstrations, food, and a large expo featuring over 150 vendors of adventure travel equipment, camping gear, bikes, vehicles, and services.”

Owned and operated by Jonathan and Roseann Hanson, this annual Arizona event, now in its sixth year, expanded East for 2014 and, at least from my perspective, seems to have been a first year success. Continue reading Overland Expo EAST Pics

Overland Expo EAST

We’re in Asheville, North Carolina this weekend to take part in the first ever eastern Overland Expo. Befitting, perhaps, is the fact that it rained all day and the entrance into the camping area became a huge mud run (in which most folks seemed to be having a fine time sliding around.) Jeeps? Sliding. Four-wheel drive trucks (mine included) – the same. But we’re now parked on the hillside looking down towards the lake and events have warmed into full swing. For more info you can check out¬†overlandexpo.com.

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An Alaskan Tiny House (Part 1)

As my wife and I aged (gracefully, I like to think) out of tent camping, I began looking for an alternative that¬†wouldn’t sacrifice¬†the spirit and feel of the outdoors at the expense of comfort. I didn’t want to tow a trailer as I wanted to be able to camp in more out-of-the-way places than RV parks. The same for a motorhome – in addition to mileage constraints and¬†the expense of gas. Truck campers, meanwhile,¬†had always seemed a bit unwieldy to me.

So I began¬†researching alternatives¬†a year or so ago. My preconceptions were changed, of course. None of my initial thoughts were totally accurate and I developed a personal feel for the pros, and not just the cons, of each type of recreational vehicle. But it wasn’t until I looked at the many versions of pop-up truck campers, trailers and vans that I started to hone in on a solution that seemed to meet our criteria – which not so surprisingly from this side of the search, turned out to be a¬†pop-up truck camper. A four-wheel drive truck might not be a Jeep Rubicon, but it could go most of the places I thought we’d want to go.
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