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Old 09-18-2013, 01:13 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
that $70 savings is for the first year and then it's free the rest of your life, best deal around from the government.
Yes, I am envious. Unfortunately the geezer pass (which I am not quite there yet) only is available to US residents. As a "furriner" the best I can do seems to be the annual pass.

Thanks for the great tips everyone! Your responses have helped tremendously.

Rick G
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Old 09-18-2013, 02:25 PM   #22
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On your way south, you could swing over from Brigham City to Logan (maybe 30 miles) and camp right out of town up Logan Canyon - lots of beautiful campspots by the river. The maples will be turning red then and just gorgeous. Logan ahs lots of nice restaurants etc. (Utah State Univ.).

Also, if you're near Blackfoot, Idaho, don't forget the free camping at the casino there, also the one just north of Pocatello, both right of the interestate (I-15). Good for an overnighter.
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Old 09-18-2013, 03:02 PM   #23
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Just a side note, there are some PILOT truck stops that now have overnight hookups for campers. I think there is one in Beaver, UT. If you are looking to just stop for a nite, that may be useful. Check their website for more info.
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Old 10-03-2013, 12:40 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Jon Vermilye View Post
2X on the Grand Circle Road Trip. Some of the most beautiful scenery in the country! As to specifics - While you could spend the entire time in Zion & not see it all, I'd take the time to head East and see Bryce Canyon, Kodachrome Basin, and, if you have the time, continue on to Goblin Valley State Park, Canyonlands, Dead Horse Point State Park & Arches. Far too much to do in a short time, but I loved all of them. Some photos & more details on my 2011 & 2012 trip pages.
WOW!!! Great pics and information on your blog.
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Old 10-03-2013, 08:52 PM   #25
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Oh dear, I'm afraid we Americans are not making a good impression on our neighboring countries now that our government has been shut down and we don't know when it will re-open. Our national parks are closed. National Parks: Shutting Down America's Best Idea

I hope you will be able to make the most of your trip in spite of the closures and certainly hope our government will "get the wheels rolling" again soon. Look out for campsites that are not National Parks. You should be heartened to know that there is still some spectacular scenery to be seen.

As to the Senior Pass for US National Parks. It is available to US residents and citizens ages 62 and over with identification as such.

We have so enjoyed the hospitality of Canadians on our many trips to your beautiful country and we certainly hope you are welcomed warmly here!
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Old 11-16-2013, 05:26 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Rick G View Post
Yes, I am envious. Unfortunately the geezer pass (which I am not quite there yet) only is available to US residents. As a "furriner" the best I can do seems to be the annual pass.

Thanks for the great tips everyone! Your responses have helped tremendously.

Rick G
Well, I thought I would report in on our trip, which was great. Unfortunately for us, we left home on October 1, the same day that the US shut down all the national parks and monuments that we were planning to see, as well as BLM campsites (although we did find the odd one that was still informally running because the camp operator was there anyway and had nowhere else to go). I have a couple of technical stories about gas mileage that I will post soon elsewhere.

In spite of not being able to go to the national parks, we had a great time in your wonderful country. After being turned away from Yellowstone Park, we travelled through Montana and Idaho in a couple of days, where the weather was cool, and spent most of our time in Utah. We camped a few days at Provo and took day trips to park City, Salt Lake City, and various historic sites around there. Then we went southeast to Green River state park, where we camped for a few days and took day trips down near the national and state parks in that area, and then worked our way west to St. George, Utah, which was our main base for my ball tournaments. Camping was a bit tricky because there were a lot of ousted national parks campers looking for campsites, but we were able to mostly find suitable spots. We also spent a few days at Mesquite Nevada, where I was also in a ball tournament. After 3 weeks, we booted home to Edmonton in 2 days because by then it was getting cold up north. Overall, we saw some amazing scenery, went over a couple of mountain passes 8500 feet up, and learned a lot about the history of the area. We are looking forward to next year, when I will have more time and hopefully the national tourist attractions will be open. We are thinking of starting at Mount Rushmore and working our way around the south side of the Grand Canyon, taking about 6 weeks this time.

For Donna, this was her first time on a long camping trip. We loved our little Trillium 4500, and met a few other fibreglass campers, especially a couple of Casita owners. WE learned a lot about camping which will come in handy on longer trips.

We found that the lack of a bathroom was a serious drawback on occasion. I have previously installed a shower which can be dismantled, and we used it when we were not in a regular campsite and it worked well. However, the lack of a toilet was a problem which made us reluctant to simply camp out in the desert, especially at night. We had a porta potty with us, but nowhere to put it as we didnít feel comfortable using an exterior tent in the wilderness, it did not feel secure. I am sure that it would have been OK, but it doesnít matter because it didnít ďfeelĒ secure.

Since we plan to camp for longer periods in primitive conditions in the future, this must be addressed, and I have a plan for that which will install a toilet in the front dinette and still let us use the dinette most of the time. I will post details of that when I build it next spring.

Our other issue was the fridge. Our old 3-way fridge worked very well most of the time, and I had it running on 12V when we were travelling by hooking it up to the vehicle alternator. However, I was constantly monitoring it and the operation was quite temperature dependent, and it had to be defrosted once while we were travelling, besides being very small. So, we have decided to get a slightly larger NovaKool R3000 all-electric fridge, which we can run off our solar system when not on the grid. This fridge uses the latest compressors for low electrical consumption. It turns out that Outback trailers in Calgary puts these in their trailers, so I was able to order one through them. Yes, I know it costs about a thousand bucks, but that should solve our fridge issues.

So, we had a terrific time and are now getting excited about our next big trip, which wonít be until next fall. We will have lots of shorter trips next spring and summer to shake things down more, as I am also going to install a better plumbing system, including hot water, so that we can be more independent. It should be fun.

Here are a couple of pictures. The first is from a roadside stop in Wyoming, the second is a view from Dead Horse Point state park in Utah.

Later,
Rick G
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Old 11-16-2013, 06:59 PM   #27
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I'm glad you had a good, safe trip. Sorry the big boss in Washington kept you out of the best parks.

How did you do in the games? My eldest brother has medaled at those games in some track events.
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Old 11-16-2013, 10:07 PM   #28
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I like the specs on that NovaKool. Advanced German compressor which modulates the use of battery power, let us know how it works out. The truck camper folks sure do like it. I was out during the shut down too. No great sand dunes national park for me
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