Just a little update on our status and progress. We have been though Ouray and Telluride, CO, Yellow Stone, the Grand Tetons in WY and Yellowstone, Grand Tetons and Wind Cave, South Dakota.
There was a bit of drama in the Tetons… The campers across the road from us set a generator under a clump of pine trees and started a mini forest fire. 4 trees went up in moments. We are told that the campers started a fire brigade and had the blaze out before the fire department got there. it roasted 3 trees and completely destroyed 1 that had to be removed completely. When we returned home late in the day from exploring the Grand Tetons, everyone was excited to tell the story. We were thrilled thinking that we had dodged a bullet. Our precious Koko, out home and everything we now own was spared. The next morning after I returned from photographing the cool mornings sunrise I looked up at our out-stretched awning only to discover it was full of burn holes from the embers. Upon closer inspection will need all 4 new awnings as there are holes in all of them. But THAT appears to be the only damage. And, the park will pick up the bill for the new awnings.
We had Erick’s nephew, Garrett for a month that flew by. We did a couple of over night camping adventures. One was 3 days and 2 nights along the Hell Roaring Trail. a beautiful trail that parallels Yellowstone River. Our campsite required us to cross (excuse me I bellieve “ford” is the proper term) the river. Yes 3 of us with full backpacks (tents, sleeping bags, food and of course my camera) in fast moving mid-thigh high water. No one went down but it was close. At one point I looked up from my footing to see Garrett facing DOWN river, AHHHhhh! He got himself turned back around and made it the 35 or so feet across facing upriver like a champ. I have a whole new appreciation for trekking poles. It was like having 4 legs instead of 2. We nicknamed the crossing “Butt-pucker Creek” The Creek is highlighted in the video. Afterward, on the way back to Koko, we saw the trail marking for where we were SUPPOSED to have crossed. It wouldn’t have been near the adventure. AND it didn’t lead to our own private black sandy beach. We sent Garrett home yesterday from Denver and are now headed back to Wyoming for the 6 day, 5 night Executive Leadership Exhibition backpacking though the Wind River mountains of Wyoming.
My camera is getting quite a work out. I am putting the final touches on a slide show set to some rocking music. It will be about 15 minutes (3 very appropriate songs). When complete I will put it up on face book or your tube – what ever will work and send links. My phone got tested for water resistance also. I left it out overnight in the rain in Spearfish, SD (yes, South Dakota) It didn’t work for 3 days so I go a new IPhone 5 and then the 4S started working and appears to work fine. It now operates as our Ipod – a very expensive Ipod… but it fits in to are Boze speaker and the IPhone 5 have a different connector and doesn’t fit. It even still connects to or WiFi on board. That was a $400 lesson.
We were in SD one week before the Sturgis. Motorcycle Rally. There were more motorcycles (and every variety of Tricycles) on the road than cars. We missed it this time but may time a trip more carefully in the future. That area of SD is spectacular. The Crazy Horse memorial and Mt Rushmore are amazing. We re-routed our trip so Garrett could see them.
After out hike in Wyoming we will be on to Bozeman, Montana where Erick has found several trails that NEED to be explored. it is also where we plan to have the awnings repaired. We expect to do some longer hikes. Mt Rainer in Washington and Three Sisters in Oregon are 40+ miles. I will have to get a couple more batteries for my camera. I seem to be able to get a day/battery.
Then we will meet John and Terri at the Bristle Come forest near Mammoth in CA in September and head on to San Diego for a couple weeks before heading to Aspen for a conference and to find where we will spend the ski season.
We haven’t been dancing since we left SD (that’s San Diego not South Dakota) I suspect we will correct that in Bozeman (and be prepared in San Diego).
Well, that is the update. Erick is learning all about the mechanical aspects of Koko and doing great with it. We trade off on driving and navigating. The navigator spends the majority of time doing something on the computer (like writing this).