While working at Amazon this holiday season, I’m running a weekly “Ask A Question” post since I’m not sightseeing much and have limited time to write. Have a question you’d like answered? Read more about AAQ here.
Today, Ethan asks for one of my favorite stories to share about my time on the road. This is actually kind of a hard question for me because I have several good stories, all of which have made it on this blog at one point or another (if you’d like to read some of them, the “Travelogue” tag has been applied to all my travel-journal style posts – https://interstellarorchard.com/tag/travelogue/).
Among my favorites are:
- My first month on the road, when I lost my brakes coming down a hill in… Missouri of all places (no, Missouri doesn’t have mountains, but it does have at least one pretty steep descent into a canyon as I discovered). I blew through an intersection at the bottom (no traffic fortunately!) and finally rolled to a stop beside a picturesque crystal blue sping-fed stream, full of trout fisherman who gave me odd looks as smoke rose from my wheel wells. Nothing to see here folks, just one more RVing newb who doesn’t know when to downshift!
The freak fall blizzard I rode out in early October of 2013 at Badlands National Park (thankfully closed at that time due to the government shutdown – I was work-camping there and taking inventory) that killed 75,000 cattle and left a coworker unresponsive from hypothermia. (Note: A tip for RVing in a blizzard? Don’t do it.) In a similar vein, just two months later I endured a 24 hour ice storm in Kansas while working at Amazon. Jeez, RVing should come with a warning label.
- Adding a couple unique things to my resume in 2014, including “puttin’ out fires” (rode along on a prescribed burn while volunteering in Florida – got to dress in the gear and everything!), and “paid actress” (checked ‘work at a renaissance festival’ off my bucket list!). Both interesting tidbits to share in conversation.
- Sharing my tales of hiking 100 miles in Yellowstone National Park the summer I lived there, and getting to see thermal features that normal visitors have never even heard of. Also as a perk of employment with the Yellowstone Association I got to take a free two-day class in Lamar Valley and got to see all seven adult members of the Lamar Canyon wolf pack, viewing wolves in the wild was also something I’d always wanted to do.
- And this year? I don’t even know where to begin. I boondocked in some truly beautiful places and there is a roundup post about them coming. One accomplishment I’ll always remember (and Ethan himself was responsible for this one) was summiting the tallest mountain in Colorado. This year also brought what might be the scariest moment I’ve experienced on the road. After a great day of hiking near Yosemite in the snow, I return to my boondock near Mono Lake wake up next morning to a wall of thick brown smoke outside the Casita’s windows, it’s a wildfire! The fear is short lived though as the fire isn’t moving my direction, but it does change my travel plans.
Looking to hit the road and make some stories of your own? The Useful Stuff tab at the top of IO is a collection of the most informative and helpful content I’ve written about how to go RVing and live a more deliberate life. Give it a peek!
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