Thursday, May 16, 2019

The Old Edison in Edison, WA

From Bellingham, take Chuckanut Drive to Edison for a scenic excursion. When you get there, stop at The Old Edison.

This historic restaurant was established in 1934 and continues to provide good food, drink and entertainment for locals and travelers alike.

The Edison has two things I really love, beer and oysters. They have local micro-brews on tap, now that's a little bit of heaven.

You can get fresh oysters from nearby Samish Bay as an appetizer, burger or a meal (my choice). Of course, there are steaks, burgers, salads and other good stuff -- but the oysters are for me.

Prices are reasonable and the old-time casual atmosphere makes it comfortable. Want to eat outdoors on a sunny day or warm evening? There's a huge grass area with tables out back.

Like entertainment? There are two very popular shuffleboard tables. And there's live music with dancing on weekends.

Tidal reflections as the ocean reaches all the way to Edison in the Samish Delta.

Lunch is served daily from 11:30 a.m. Closing is 11:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. Edison may be a bit off the main drag, but well worth the scenic side trip.

You can also get to Edison from the I-5 Freeway. If you are heading north or south take the Bow-Hill exit and head west (click here for directions). You can't miss it.

Stop by Weekend Reflections for more photos from around the world.

Visit Letting Go of the Bay Leaf for more Mosaic Monday.

Also shared with Your the Star and Tuesdays with a Twist at Stone Cottage Adventures. -- Margy

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Wayne and Margy's New RV Adventure

Site 45 at Lost Dutchman State Park.
In January and February, Wayne and I went on a Rental RV Road Trip from Bellingham, Washington to Arizona. We were gone for 25 days and loved the experience. You can read about that trip by clicking here.

When we got back, we started looking for an RV of our own. We really liked the Coachmen Leprechaun we rented. It had a comfy layout for a small 24' overall length Class C. We wanted small for easier driving and parking in restaurant and shopping lots.

We looked at several other brands, but kept coming back to the Coachmen Freelander 21RS with a bed slide-out. Our rental had a rear corner bed. While we were leery of the mechanics of a slide, we wanted increased sleeping comfort.

Since Poulsbo RV is the only Coachmen dealer near us, we went to one of their RV shows. And guess where it was, in the Bellis Fair Mall next to our condo. Seemed like kismet. They only had a larger Freelander display, but did have a Forest River Sunseeker 2250SLE. After much thought, we decided it was even better. Forest River is the parent company of Coachmen so we knew the quality was similar.

What changed our minds was: a Chevy 4500-322HP V8 gas engine, more interior storage, a bathroom sink in the living area, a functional dinette, well laid out kitchen, omnidirectional antennae and tank heaters. To put the icing on the cake, they gave us an extra discount for purchasing the show model. We were happy and Kevin, the salesman, was happy.

Inside our new Sunseeker 2250SLE RV.

We drove 30 miles down to the Poulsbo RV in Mt. Vernon to pick her up after detailing. Having the dealer relatively close is nice. Jacob was the mechanic in charge and he gave us a detailed tour of the coach and all of her systems. Like we did with our rental adventure, we took our new rig to the Bellingham RV Park for the first night to test everything out.

At the Bellingham RV Park for our first night.

When you live in a condo, you have to make alternative plans for RV parking. We chose secure Gotcha Covered near Bellingham. You have a choice of outside parking, or under cover with electrical hookups. We chose the latter. It's close enough to our condo for easy packing.

Parked at Gotcha Covered for storage.

On day six day we started our first New RV Adventure. Come along with us and see what we found. Please note, the posts have been reordered for easier reading. -- Wayne and Margy

Monday, April 29, 2019

Wayne and Margy's New RV Trip Log 1

Trip Log Part 1
McChord Air Force Base Holiday Camp

Entrance to forested McChord AFB Holiday Camp.
Six days after we purchased our Forest River Sunseeker 2250SLE RV, we headed out for our first trip.

It's been a dream to go to sports events and not stay in hotels. It isn't the cost, we just like having our own space.

Our first trip is to Oregon State and the University of Oregon for women's softball. We don't have to rush, so we decided to take two days to reach our first game.

On the way we returned to one of our favourite stops from that first trip, McChord Air Force Base's Holiday Camp. It's restricted to active and retired military and DoD personnel. If you qualify, we highly recommend it. I called ahead and we got the same spot as before, #24. It's in the Upper Loop where the trees are the thickest and the sites the most private. Reservations are recommended for summer. Visit their website for details.

Site #24 at McChord AFB Holiday Camp.

We parked and hooked up to utilities. There's water, electric and power at 37 RV sites. There are additional dry or tent camping spots. Nightly costs are $28 for 50 amp, $25 for 30, $15 for dry and $12 for tents.  There are restrooms, showers, laundry, a dump, playground, picnic area and a walking/jogging trail that goes all the way around the airport runway. That's a long way. We did just a portion. When the C-17s are flying, it's really interesting.

Our bedroom slide out.

The Commissary and BX are a great place to provision your rig. They have plenty RV parking in their largenlots. We did that rather than hauling fresh food down to the storage yard.

We enjoyed our two relaxing days and got to know our new RV a little better. My guess is this might become our first and last stop for many trips that involve driving on I-5.

Sunseeker 2250 Kitchen

As a part of each Trip Log, I'll introduce our new RV.  The 2250 is the smallest Sunseeker made by Forest River. The overall length is 24'-4".  The interior is two feet less with 180 square feet including the cab. Everything is compact yet feels roomy.

The kitchen is on the right or starboard side. It has excellent storage. I keep dishes in the upper cupboard, cleaning and supplies under the sink, and silverware, pots and pans in drawers. The sink is large with a flip-up counter extension. I bought a large wood cutting board for a moveable working surface.

A compact yet complete kitchen.

There's a microwave, fan, and a three burner propane stove with oven. The refrigerator/freezer is a mid-sized auto-select electric/propane model. There's ample room for fresh food.

A mid-sized electric/propane fridge.

On the opposite wall is a combination closet and pantry. You can choose to use both sides for closet space, but we chose to use the pantry option on the right. The shelves are adjustable and deep. I use plastic bins to make reaching items in the back easier.

A closet with a pantry option.

Living in a float home and boating in a 24' Bayliner has helped us learn techniques for small spaces. Applying what we know to a small Class C RV has been an easy transition.

Do you have an RV? Is it something you would like to try? Let me know what you think. -- Margy

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Wayne and Margy's New RV Trip Log 2

Trip Log Part 2
Albany/Corvallis KOA

A nice day for driving south on I-5 to Oregon.
After leaving McChord Air Force Base we drove south on I-5 towards Corvallis, Oregon. On travel days we like to combine our first gas stop with breakfast.

I use Google maps in satellite view to find freeway close stops with easy access, restaurants, gas stations and RV friendly parking. If we need to shop, I look for ones with a grocery store as well. These days it's not hard to do.

We had reservations for three nights at the Albany/Corvallis KOA. We checked in and went directly to the university for the women's softball game vs. UCLA. Since USC doesn't have a softball team, we can be free agents and root for other PAC12 schools.

KOA's all have a similar layout so you know what to expect.

Because we hadn't yet set up our RV, we used it as transportation to the game. With a small rig we don't have a toad. It took me a while to figure that one out. Toad is the nickname for a "towed" vehicle.  Kind of like a dinghy for a boat.

Site #80 at the Albany/Corvallis KOA.

I called the university parking office and was told we could park in any hourly lot if we paid for two spots due to the length. At $1/hour our total cost was $4 until 5:00 when parking became free. 

Game 2 got rained out so we relaxed in the campground. We tried to use their nature trail to go down to the Calapooia River. There was still evidence of the terrible flooding that occurred last week. It was especially bad closer to Corvallis along the Willamette River.

UCLA women up to bat.

On Saturday, we took an UBER to campus to watch the rescheduled end to the rained out game and the full Saturday competition. It was $22 each way with a generous tip, and a lot easier than disconnecting our rig to drive ourselves.

Sunseeker 2250SLE Bathroom

A separate bathroom.
Today I'll give you a tour of our Sunseeker's bathroom. There's a toilet and shower in a separate room. The vanity is in the main cabin, a feature we really like.

The shower is big enough for Wayne who is over six feet tall. A six gallon on-demand hot water heater quickly provides plenty for a relaxing bath. The Sunseeker has two options for heating water, one electric when connected in a park or running the generator, and the other propane for dry camping (boondocking). It's nice to have options.

The flush toilet uses city water in parks or water pumped from the 35 gallon fresh water tank while dry camping.

A 27 gallon black water tank and a 32 gallon gray water tank hold the effluent until we use a park sewer connection or a sani-dump along the way.

Just outside the bathroom door is an alcove with the vanity and medicine cabinet. I think this is a much better use of space and gives the RV a more open feeling.

The bathroom vanity and medicine cabinet.

A master panel, convenience center, is where we monitor our systems including fresh water, black water, gray water, propane and house batteries. It's also the place where we can turn on the on-demand hot water heater and water pump if needed.

This model has Arctic holding tank heaters that can be turned on for freezing conditions. That sure would have made us more confident on our rental RV trip with all the ice and snow.

Thanks for joining us on this adventure in our new RV. Let me know if you have any questions or comments. -- Margy

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Wayne and Margy's New RV Trip Log 4

Trip Log Part 4
Richardson Park Campground

Women's softball at Jane Sanders Stadium at U of O.
The beauty of traveling in an RV is you can change your plans. Originally we were going to head back to Bellingham after the Univeristy of Oregon softball game. We've been having so much fun, we decided to stay near Eugene for another game later in the week.

We didn't want to drive back to Armitage Park so we decided to try Richardson Park 16 miles west of Eugene on Fern Ridge Reservoir. We got softball tickets for the popular University of Oregon vs main rival Oregon State University online at Stubhub. We made reservations at Richardson for the three nights between games, then one more night at Armitage Park.

We picked a pull-through site #42 to get lots of sun.

Richardson Park is 15 miles west of Eugene on Fern Ridge Lake, a large reservoir popular with sailboat owners. There's a marina here and nearby at a day-use section near the dam. We had two wonderful days with lots of sun and blue skies.

The marina with lots of sailboats ready to go out.

Camping opens in mid-April for the 88 tent/RV spots with power and water. A sani-dump is available, but it was out of order we were there. April is early in the season, but reservations are still a good idea. If you use the Lane County online reservation system you need to do it two days in advance. Otherwise call the campground at (541) 935-2005.  Rates are $27.50 a night plus a $10 reservation fee for the stay if the online system is used.

Barbecuing steak for dinner.

We relaxed for three days watching boats, reading, barbecuing and enjoying fires. We soaked up lots of sun in camp and down at the lakeshore. If you're looking for a spot a short ways from I-5 and town, this is the place.

Traveling without a Towed "Toad" Vehicle

An RV friendly parking lot.
Our 24' Bayliner doesn't have a dinghy and our 24" Sunseeker RV doesn't have a toad. A small RV has limited towing capability, plus we decided to use our small RV as our regular transportation as well as our living accommodation.

Our vehicle almost fits into a regular parking spot. We are fine on width, especially if we pull in our mirrors. The length hangs over about two feet, making it necessary to use what we call Canadian parking, pull through and face out.

Google satellite view maps help us find the services we need.
It's best to find large supermarket or mall parking lots that give ample room to maneuver. Google maps is great for this. Zoom in using satellite view to check out the facility. Today we are going to combine a grocery store stop for resupply with parking during the game,

For the last leg, we can use either Uber, a taxi or other public transportation. When we were in Tempe, Arizona, we used the light rail that passed right in front of our RV park.

A toad following it's master.
If you have a camper, 5th wheel trailer or travel trailer you can disconnect and go. We do see other small RVs without toads, but virtually all of the big rigs drag them along behind. The choice is yours. -- Margy

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Wayne and Margy's New RV Trip Log 3

Trip Log Part 3
Coburg's Armitage County Park

We left Corvallis for 38-mile drive to Coburg, Oregon, just north of Eugene. We stopped at the Shell station. Here in Oregon they pump gas for you. It isn't full service like the old days. Tell them what you want and stay in your vehicle. This station has propane if needed and there's a mini-mart, but no fresh foods.

Site #32 at Armitage Park Campground.

We stayed at Armitage Park on our RV Rental Adventure because it was recommended by a fellow camper in Bellingham, and because we wanted to check it out as a place to stay during sports events at the University of Oregon. That's why we are here this trip, women's softball.

Fixing a steak dinner on a nice evening outdoors.

The sites are well spaced, with many private ones among the trees. In January the maples were bare. Now they are leafing out and green. The grass areas now have lots of tiny daisy-like flowers and bright yellow dandelions that the bumblebees love to visit.

An after dinner fire to enjoy the evening outdoors.

There are full hookups, tables and firepits. A laundry, bathroom and shower facility is available. In January, reservations weren't needed. Now the park is full almost every night. The Lane County Park system has an easy to use online reservation system for their five campgrounds. Online reservations must be made three days in advance or call the park office at (541) 357-5481. The fee is $30 a night with an extra $10 per stay if you reserve a spot online.

Spring on the trail alongside the MacKenzie River.

We stayed two nights. The first we relaxed, BBQed steak and corn for dinner and had a fire with wood purchased at the camp office. The next day we walked the McKenzie River trail next to the park. The water is much higher and faster now, snow melt and rain runoff. Next we headed into Eugene for the softball game.

Sunseeker 2250SLE Sleeping Accommodations

Sunseeker 2250 diagram from the Forest River website.
We chose the Forest River Sunseeker 2250SLE model because it has a short 24' 4" overall length and because it has a slide out for a queen-size bed.

Our rental RV had a corner bed that was difficult to get into, out of and make. We were leery of getting a slide, but the ability to have a walk-around bed swayed us.

The Sunseeker 2250 is rated to sleep six, two in the queen bed, two on a bunk over the cab and two in the convertible dinette.

The dinette table drops down and the cushions become a mattress. Two can sleep here, but in my opinion small children would fit best. We don't use our dinette for sleeping, but we do appreciate the large table for eating, writing, reading and watching TV.

There's ample room in the over-cab bunk for two. A removable section allows for easy access to the front seats while driving, then it can be fitted into place for sleeping. We use our space for storing large items such as coats and backpacks.

The slide-out queen is our bed. We have large windows, storage and overhead lights.

To bring the slide in for driving, the covers from the bottom of the split mattress are released but not removed. The top half is pulled back to clear the area for the slide to be retracted. Putting the bed together goes in reverse. This small inconvenience is offset by the convenience of walk-around bed access.

Have you been thinking about getting an RV? I highly recommend renting one of the style you think is best, a Class C motorhome like ours, a van style Class B, a bus style Class A, a truck camper, a 5th-wheel trailer or a travel trailer. RVs come in many styles, shapes and sizes.

Thanks for visiting part of my world this week. For more great posts from Our World Tuesday, click here.

Also a meme called Through My Lens by Mersad.

A meme I enjoy is All Seasons. Stop by and take a look.

And a Wednesday Linkup My Corner of the World at Photographing New Zealand. -- Margy