The High Prairie Long Haul

So our life and its circumstances have led us to the wonderful world of Houston, Texas. I have to admit that Houston would not normally be one of our “go to” spots to visit, but with the passing my Father-in-law, some family issues have come up that require us to stay in Clutch City. But the journey to the balmy and wonderful land of oil is what concerns us now. So let us begin…

The Scotts anxious to get movin'

The Scotts anxious to get movin’.

In a galaxy far fa-, wait no, let me start over. Our journey begins in the wonderful town of Golden, Colorado in a not so wonderful RV park (which will remain un-named). Our trip southeast could have taken us on one of many routes, but I opted out of the fast “Interstate Route” down I25 to 87 to 287, and chose to take I70 East out of Denver, and cutting down through the wide open high prairie on HWY 287. I chose this route as I wanted the flattest route possible, but did not want the hubbub of taking the interstate through bigger cities. Also, the speed limit on HWY 287 is a smooth 65 mph, perfect for the ever-cautious RVer. Christie and I decided that it would be best for her back and both of our sanity to break up this sixteen-hour drive into four days. In case you didn’t already know, everything takes longer when you’re in an RV. A four hour day quickly turns into a six hour day with fuel stops, potty breaks, (both for Mamma Bear and the animals) and snack and food breaks.

Our Walmart site in Lamar, CO

Our Walmart site in Lamar, CO

Day 1 brought us strolling into the Walmart parking lot in Lamar, Colorado around 6:30 or 7:00 in the evening. It was rather warm outside, and subsequently hot and stuffy in the trailer, so we opened all the windows, set up our small generator, and turned on the fans to air out our mobile sauna. While the sweat lodge was airing out, we decided to cool off and walk around the Walmart and look at all the stuff we didn’t need or want, but it was soooo cool inside. After about 45 minutes of pointless wandering in the everlasting A/C, we grabbed a Redbox movie and headed back out to our home on wheels. Dinner was made, the movie enjoyed, and we were off to bed. Now, I hate being hot when I sleep. HATE IT. I’m the kind of person that has a fan blowing on me in the dead of winter. Don’t get this twisted, I don’t need the white noise, I NEED TO BE COOL. I find that nothing is worse than waking up sweating into my Tempur-Pedic pillow. I hate it. Having said that, the night spent in Lamar was dreadfully hot and sweaty, for all involved.

Brian and Phoebe hot napping

Brian and Phoebe hot napping.

Lucy took over the driving duties while Brian was checking his Facebook

Lucy took over the driving duties while Brian was checking his Facebook.

Day 2 started by Christie and I wringing out our sheets, desperately wanting Starbucks, and with 3 days left in our trip. We rolled out of Lamar cranky and deprived of our caffeine fix, and headed south through the rolling prairie. Another 6 hours of driving through rolling nothingness and big skies took us through the Oklahoma panhandle and into the Lone Star state, stopping in Amarillo for the night. Due to our sweat bath from the night prior, we decided we would stay at an RV park. With hook ups. WITH AIR CONDITIONING!! We found a very nice place named the Amarillo Ranch RV Park. This was your normal gravel parking lot style north Texas RV park with mostly pull thru site and full hook ups. The facilities were nice, and clean, and our little A/C unit roared all night, keeping me crisp and comfy in bed. Christie froze.

Phoebe riding with Christie and enjoying the A/C

Phoebe riding with Christie and enjoying the A/C.

Day 3 began with me chiseling the wife-popsicle from my side, and having a nice breakfast. After a quick fuel stop we were once again hauling thru the wildly flat northern grasslands of the largest state in the lower 48. As we get further and further south, the heat and humidity worsens, forcing us to shorten our snack and lunch breaks. As the evening approached, I realized that I had made the horrible mistake of not calling ahead and reserving a spot at a local RV park. Stupid me. So we roll into Decatur, just north of Ft. Worth, with no place to stay, and every park we find is full. Stupid me. For the second time we found ourselves camping out in a Walmart parking lot, with no A/C. We placated ourselves with Pizza Hut and the Blacklist, but we still had a horribly sweaty and uncomfortable night. Thank God we would be done Friday afternoon.

Christie with her new camper shwag

Christie with her new camper shwag.

Unless you're the lead dog, the view is always the same.

Unless you’re the lead dog, the view is always the same.

Day 4 we awoke covered in sweat and determined to get to our final destination and bask in the glory of our Dometic air conditioner. With the end in sight we got a small case of barn fever and rushed through our day to come cruising into northwest Houston around 2:30 in the afternoon. The one thing you need to know about Houston drivers is this: 80 mph is the new 55 mph. And they let you know it. I highly recommend staying in the second from the right lane on any highway (when towing or driving your rig) as people are nuts when merging on from the feeders and don’t really care that you have upwards of 5 tons pushing you down the freeway giving you about a mile and a half of stopping distance. Having said that, we made it to our new temporary home alive and checked in at the Fallbrook RV Resort. FRR is run by Quality RV Resorts (they have 3 separate Houston locations, and 1 other location in San Antonio), which really describes the facilities…Quality. With oversized avenues, very large pull thru sites, well kept grounds, heated pool, hot-tub/whirlpool, man made lake, and many other guest amenities; FRR welcomed us with open arms. The managers, Sean and Amber, are very nice and accommodating and very knowledgeable of the surrounding area.

The office and clubhouse at Fallbrook RV Resort.

The office and clubhouse at Fallbrook RV Resort.

Our HUGE pull thru site accomodates all three of our vehicles!

Our HUGE pull thru site accomodates all three of our vehicles!

With the High Prairie Long Haul finally behind us, we settled in, cranked the A/C, and made dinner. We did learn a couple lessons from this trip: First, setting a realistic limit to driving really helped break the monotony of the drive itself. We were not in any hurry, so we were able to set a four or five hour limit to our daily drive time. This especially helped Christie as she has 6 herniated discs in her back and long drive times really tear her up. Secondly, always, always, always plan ahead and reserve a spot, unless of course you would like to sleep in a convection oven.