THOMPSON FALLS, MONTANA

By: joealaska , 2:36 AM GMT on August 21, 2014

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Monday morning I was getting ready to leave Metaline. The day before I noted there was a camper parked behind me. This had not been the case since I arrived. So now I had to move the RV to get the tow dolly accessible. Not a big deal, and it was done.

Then Tori came up and I wanted to thank her for the nice experience. A great camping experience. Easy, no pressure attitude. No page of rules. They have been there for many years, and I met several campers who were always returning often with groups. Seems like a nice business.

But I finally (OK, had to pull out the BIG ROAD MAP for Tori, and that took some time) got on the road. I headed south to Newport, then turned east to Sandpoint. I was on RT 2 for a while. Then I headed southeast on RT 200. It started out bad with road construction. Stop and sit road construction. Locals making u-turns road construction. When it finally got moving the speed limit was 45 mph for many miles, due to possible road construction at any moment.

But the scenery was spectacular. Water off to my right turned from the omnipresent river turned to a huge lake or reservoir, at some point called Lake Pend Oreille with some big islands here and there. Bigger than I expected, wide expanses of water and a few boats. Finally the road opened up, with a 70 mph limit. I hung around 60 or just under.

The only other issue was a few hundred bikers riding along RT 200, which has very little off of the actual lane to ride on. So I was always having to go into the other lane to go around, only to find another pack a quarter mile down the road. And REPEAT. This was a surprisingly busy road, so as I was trying to pass there was usually some car or cars coming the other direction very fast.

But generally it was all good.

Now I am in Birdland RV in Thompson Falls, Montana. Still a smaller town, but not like the recent places I have been. It is very nice here, with nice campsites separated by 75 by 50 foot areas of natural forest. Perfect for Dutchie.

Then there are the trains. I read somewhere there were around 4 trains during the day and a couple at night. More like a dozen in 24 hours FLASH BAZBO. There are a couple at night, around midnight, then that 5:03 AM bad boy. They hit the horns at the closest possible position to my ear. Still, it is not that bad, unless I was working and needing quality ZZZs.

Yesterday I went to play my 690th golf course played. Rivers Bend. I could walk to it. Nine holes carved out of 100 foot tall pines. Nice condition. Small yet sloping greens. Buncha deer. I checked weather radar before I left, just to do it. It looked fine out the window. The radar showed nothing except a couple widely scattered small storms.

When I got there a guy I did not know asked me what I knew about those clouds coming over the mountain. I told him I checked radar recently and we are GO. He went ahead of me, and all was well for three holes. At that point I heard thunder coming from THOSE clouds, and I saw rainfall coming from the clouds still off in the distance. I called up to him (and his wife) that I saw rain coming. He said he would play one more hole and make a decision. That hole took him to the farthest point from the clubhouse.

He went on, and I followed. The squall front came through and wind was whipping. I was on the tee and decided to hit one more shot and see what happened. I striped a nice drive for the first time of the day, then the air horns were blasting. The lady in the pro shop was warning golfers of lightning. She blasted the horn again. No problem, as I was just a hundred yards away from the clubhouse, versus that guy and his wife now about 600 yards out. I even was able to ride out and grab my ball and return to the safety of the clubhouse, just as the rain came. And it came in SHEETS, along with a lot of lightning and thunder.

I waited with a lot of other folk as the rain slowly stopped. But the course was saturated, and I took the offer of the rain check. I could return and play nine. I did that today, and played pretty badly.

Right now I am outside with the iMac and Dutchie as the sun goes down. Last night the rain returned. A nice storm came in late night night and lasted most of the night. One of the local guys said the rain is unusual, but that is mainly what I have seen since I got here.

I have been watching a guy and lady set up there camp near me. It is a pickup truck that has a platform above the trucks bed and cabin, on stilts. On that platform is a typical tent. It is about 8 feet off the ground, and looks like it belongs ON the ground. Will post pictures.

Debating about driving 2 hours to Spokane and getting a TV setup, or hold off. Labor Day is approaching, need to make some plans. This place right now is perfect, except for no TV for a month…

The sandals are staying.

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11. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
6:56 PM GMT on August 23, 2014
joealaska has created a new entry.
10. dotmom
6:45 PM GMT on August 22, 2014
Ylee - only if he can climb a ladder - I suppose they draw that up at night.
Member Since: April 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1242
9. Ylee
6:18 PM GMT on August 22, 2014
maybe the truck tent is elevated to keep bugs and varmits out? Not sure if even a bear could get up in that!
Member Since: February 3, 2011 Posts: 94 Comments: 15744
8. insideuk
5:50 PM GMT on August 22, 2014
There are no less than 3 big grain collection elevators at the seemingly busy Cut Bank Railway Station...and 2 RV parks nearby....

On the plus side it is walking distance to the local Pizza Hut from either campsite...just wait patiently for the trains to pass between you and your dinner.

The local shopping mall may sell earplugs.

And tasteful sandals....
Member Since: February 28, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1412
7. joealaska
4:29 PM GMT on August 22, 2014
The trains have won the war. Today there were 4 of them between 5:30 AM and 8:30. You can really FEEL them as they pass by. I had a bottle of water on my desk as one passed, and it did a JURASSIC PARK move.

I will be departing this otherwise great location on Monday and head northeast to CUT BANK, Montana, right on RT 2. That will take me out of the tall timber and mountains, although I will still be able to see them. That will give me a place to spend Labor Day.
Member Since: April 2, 2008 Posts: 804 Comments: 635
6. insideuk
11:13 AM GMT on August 22, 2014
I've just been reading about the squillions of blue jellyfish type creatures called "by-the-wind sailor" that have been washing up on the coast at La Push WA - as well as along the coast from California to Oregon and up into Canada.

Have they invaded your local beaches yet OSDIANNA? They don't look doggy paw friendly!
Member Since: February 28, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1412
5. dotmom
12:45 PM GMT on August 21, 2014
What a treat to read the blog and then these very colorful comments. It is like reading a book with vivid illustrations. Keep it up! I even enjoyed Dave's twice!

I vote to keep the sandals also. Joe you have never been a fashionista, but since the sandals, I think it is borderline!!!
Member Since: April 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1242
4. insideuk
12:00 PM GMT on August 21, 2014
I'm getting the idea that you could now, with your wealth of 12 weeks experience, quite easily scout out a suitable plot of land and set about creating the all time bestest RV park camp ground that the world has ever known.

Each pitch would be separated by a cuppla acres of private tick free forest. To one side every RV would have an open view across unspoilt plains, to the other a mountain vista with a lazy river snaking its way hither and thither. A distant rail line would provide the lightest hint of background white noise, a constant low rumble of a single nightly 825 mile long train, its air horn purposefully disabled.

The entrance to the camp would be wide enough to entirely misjudge the turn and still make it in safely. The easy wide paved drive thru sites would have running hot, cold and iced water, plus beer on draught. Maybe a bourbon hook up for a small extra fee. Everyone would have super fast internet connection, every TV sports channel available on the planet, an overnight courtesy laundry service and there would be a huge pile of free stuff to burn...

like charcoal, logs and great big steaks. Salad for an extra fee.

Alongside your personal fire pit/ grill/ natural disaster area would be a comfy reclining leather chair and footstool, a hot tub and wireless headphones. One click of a remote control and the distant mountain glacier is instantly transformed into an outdoor movie theatre. All your favourite films and TV box sets DVD's are available to be beamed down from space onto your own personal 900 foot ice field.

A lightning proof electric buggy would be provided to get you out to the private golf course nearby. A would-be championship, personally designed by Joe, layout that allows just one player at a time and which guarantees the weather at a touch of a button (high velocity fans and water hoses are affixed to every tree for absolute authenticity). If another human shows up whilst you play the individually designed 639 hole course then you get a free round the next day. Obviously you can play all holes in any order you like. Nobody is watching.

Except the 2 official course cats. They had proper club uniforms made but they wriggled out of them in 2 seconds flat and went back to being camouflagic, as is their wont.

But they won't be paying you much attention. One is busy organising large insects, small birds and a passing herd of circus animals for evening musical soiree entertainment features (every other Saturday and Tuesday lunchtimes, weather permitting). The other is asleep until dinner time.

And soon again thereafter.

As per experience, the best RV sites have few written rules.

Though clearly the very best among them should introduce one about sandals.
Member Since: February 28, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1412
3. DHaupt
8:05 AM GMT on August 21, 2014
Looks like a lovely, peaceful little town in a glorious setting. I have just gotten back from a Google Earth visit. Had a good view of the golf course and your RV park all from a couple of hundred miles overhead. One of the things I most enjoyed about my old job with Kennecott was that I got to spend time in similar "no where" places, enough time to get a sense of what living there could be like. You know, we all have to live someplace, so why not someplace we like.

I always wanted to live in either Elko or Winnemucca, NV or maybe Socorro, NM. But about 42 years ago, I fell into this deep potential well called California and doubt that I will ever climb out of it. Maybe in my next incarnation I can be a cockroach in the Ruby Marshes of Nevada. In truth, any place in California (excepting the LA area) beats so many other places that I can't moan that much.

I had an aunt, Myrna, my mother's younger sister, who lived her last years in Clearwater, NB. I greatly enjoyed visiting her in 1994 with my wife and father. My mother had passed away of a horrible cancer years earlier; when Aunt Myrna came out on her porch to great us, I was shocked speechless to hear my mother's voice. That trip was the last time I ever saw her; she was happy living in that tiny farming town in the rolling hills of Eastern Nebraska. She and her husband, deceased when we visited, had run the town's watering hole and a business that sold milking machines.

Aunt Myrna enjoyed ill health nearly all her life. She had been a heavy smoker and a knock-out "babe" in her 20s; a girl of repute. Married Paul Fulbright, a Humphrey Bogart clone. As happens to many of us, she ended up an overweight , asthmatic, arthritic, old bag, but with a great devil-may-care bon vivant outlook. Miss her.

Every night when she did her respiration therapy treatments, she opened up this book of "Harlequin Romances" to read and made a cucumber salad sandwich. Then, her last Camel of the day. During WWII she was my babysitter.
Member Since: March 28, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1027
2. DHaupt
8:04 AM GMT on August 21, 2014
Ignore this one, no way to remove it apparently!
Looks like a lovely, peaceful little town in a glorious setting. I have just gotten back from a Google Earth visit. Had a good view of the golf course and your RV park all from a couple of hundred miles overhead. One of the things I most enjoyed about my old job with Kennecott was that I got to spend time in similar "no where" places, enough time to get a sense of what living there could be like. You know, we all have to live somrplace, so why not someplace we like.

I always wanted to live in either Elko or Winnemucca, NV or maybe Socorro, NM. But about 42 years ago, I fell into this deep potential well called California and doubt that I will ever climb out of it. Maybe in my next incarnation I can be a cockroach in the Ruby Marshes of Nevada. In truth, any place in California (excepting the LA area) beats so many other places that I can't moan that much.

I had an aunt, Myrna, my mother's younger sister, who lived her last years in Clearwater, NB. I greatly enjoyed visiting her in 1994 with my wife and father. My mother had passed away of a horrible cancer years earlier; when Aunt Myrna came out on her porch to great us, I was shocked speechless to hear my mother's voice. That trip was the last time I ever saw her; she was happy living in that tiny farming town in the rolling hills of Eastern Nebraska. She and her husband, deceased when we visited, had run the town's watering hole and a business that sold milking machines.

Aunt Myrna enjoyed ill health nearly all her life. She had been a heavy smoker and a knock-out "babe" in her 20s; a girl of repute. Married Paul Fulbright, a Humphrey Bogart clone. As happens to many of us, she ended up an overweight , asthmatic, arthritic, old bag, but with a great devil-may-care bon vivant outlook. Miss her.

Every night when she did her respiration therapy treatments, she opened up this book of "Harlequin Romances" to read and made a cucumber salad sandwich. Then, her last Camel of the day. During WWII she was my babysitter.
Member Since: March 28, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1027
1. osdianna
4:33 AM GMT on August 21, 2014
That was the storm I saw sitting over you yesterday...big yellow and orange blob, so I figured it had thunder and lightning in it too. If it's from monsoonal flow, you will get more according to the weather folk. Looked like your chair and ottoman got soaked.
Member Since: March 5, 2009 Posts: 30 Comments: 528

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About joealaska

On June 4th I left Kentucky driving my RV known as Leggs. The trip is mostly unplanned, it will be interesting to see where I end up. Let's GO!

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