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A springtime flotilla (boondocked) on the upper Mississippi.DSC00105.jpg

A few posts ago, I said I would talk about a previous boondocking spot.  After I thought about it I realized there were a bunch of previous boondocking spots.

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We had some good times on hook in this old rig, The Partnership ll.  When we bought her we did not know how much of a dock-baby (floating condo) she had been.  With most of her time spent in the slip, old fuel had made a mess out of her tanks.  We changed some things and fought that problem most of a whole season.  Took her from St. Louis to Kentucky Lake and back right in the midst of it.  That was a real adventure, took us a full case of fuel filters to make the round trip.  I’ll never forget the trip back, spent the night in a very wide spot on the Ohio River just up stream from the confluence of the Ohio and the Mississippi, somewhere right past the riverfront at Paducha, KY.  On hook behind an island way out of the channel. swimming at midnight behind the boat, wine & cheese, low lights, full moon, lots of stars, Jimmy Buffet on the stereo and a very clear July night, Boondocking heaven for sure.

A couple of years in that boat and we had the itch for something newer and bigger.  The Rendezvous came into the picture in the spring of ‘03. DCP13260-broadside2.jpgDcp13262AFT.jpg

Man those were some good times.  The Rendezvous was a party boat in the midst of some very strong willed partiers for sure.  We belonged to a boat club which owned an island on the Mississippi River, three miles from the confluence of the Illinois and the Mighty Miss.

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View album HERE then click any picture for slide show.

If we were not boondocking on the Island, we were on a hook somewhere behind one.  Lots of camping without hook ups took place.  There were also many occasions we were transients in a neighboring or far away marina.  But that is a different story all together.  Now to call this DRY camping would not really apply, after all we were in the WATER.  We also had plenty of RUM on board, so DRY camping it was NOT.  But we were not plugged in with a FHU site either.  It was a real blast and we made some great memories.

Everything runs it’s course and by 2009, the Rendezvous was headed for a new home port.  The new captain took possession in November 2009 and we sat around with sellers remorse till early Feb. 2010.

We head into a new direction

As the weeks passed we began to realize that camping in an RV would be a great change up and a whole new set of experiences could be had.  The search began, a BIG camper is what we need, 30’ at least.

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Every time we arrived to look at one listed on Craig’s list, it had just been sold to someone who pulled up a few minutes before we got there.  After a few of those and taking a look at 30’ trailers, we soon realized smaller was better.  Many more really cool places to pull into were available.  Most of our time would be out doors.  We did not need BIG, we NEEDED SMALL.  After about three weeks of looking, we pulled this pop up home.  Camped in it twice and sold it.

But not before we bought… this great little Hybrid camper.camper-IMAG0010.jpg camper-IMAG0009.jpgIMAG0061.jpg IMAG0057.jpg

We camped every weekend we could and the Hybrid did serve us very well.  We learned a lot, and we did not have a whole lot of money committed.  Bought both used and got most all our money back when we sold ‘em.IMAG0004.jpg

We camped a bunch, added things to the camper like batteries, inverters, LEDs.  Planned for boondocking and possibly a small solar panel.  Well we only boondocked one time (I stand corrected, Rhonda reminded me of another, when we got loaded up with ticks) in this little rig but it was a true boondock and it cinched the deal.  That summer was a HOT one for sure, we had slowed the camping by mid July due to the heat and were beginning to look forward to fall to resume our weekend camping.  The second weekend of August was approaching and the weather broke, temps dropped dramatically, we headed out.  On Friday we rolled 75 miles east of home and deep into the Daniel Boone Conservation area.  There is a great no hook up site 8 miles in and in 8 to 10 miles in every direction there is nothing but trees and hills.  Gravel in and gravel out.  We were there for three days and as I say our future was cinched.

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I guess that it was soon after or during that dry camp weekend we really got the fever.  The planning and dreaming started and our destiny was sealed.  The following months drug on and we planned, winter came and went.  Looking back, it is amazing how well things fell into place and a lot of things did for sure.

By April we had nailed down the truck to haul our fifth wheel.  Now we needed to find the fifth wheel to haul behind it.  So, we did.

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Took a few days off work and headed to Sioux Falls, SD to give ‘em a check.  See I had spent some time in a RV related business and knew before we went what we were going to see.  Rhonda found it and we headed out.  As I said, it is amazing how well things can work out and we are very grateful for how they have.  We knew when we stepped into the door she was ours.  By September everything was set, we pulled out of the driveway and were off to our new life.  As we have heard many folks out here say, our only regret is we did not do this sooner.

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Hell with that

You may be asking what does all this have to do with boondocking or our future?  Well, I am not sure myself.  But if the camp we are about to leave is any indication, I think we may see our selves in the boonies more often in the future than we have in the recent past.

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Even with high winds for the past two days, it sure has been restful here on Dark Canyon Rd.

Remember, TurnWhenTheRoadDoes