Elastomeric

Previous changes in our Vome are working well, and I will most likely leave everything as is for a few weeks–Baahahahahah! So what to do, what to do; I decided to tackle putting the Elastomeric coating on the top of  Miss Freedom’s roof for a little more comfort factor when the sun beats down on her. You know how hot vehicles can get, and a 15-20 degree difference in temperature is significant.
There is a perfectly designated area on the top of the fiberglass high top marked by a small “step” down toward the front of the van before the roof begins the very pronounced slope toward the windshield. I masked off the area  leaving a two inch border around the perimeter of the roof so the white Elastomeric cannot be seen unless you are really, really tall or hovering in a helicopter.  I was dreading the “skunk” look and doing the top in this fashion and not taking it all the way down the slope of the roof solved the problem.

Out comes the step ladder, roller, paint pan, open can of “goo” and I am ready to roll 🙂  Elastomeric is thick, like whipped cream, and there really is no danger of it dripping off the paint roller, but I still took a deep breath before I brought the roller up to the top of  Freedom’s roof and began the process.  I was more than tickled when I got that first coat on without any problems.  I let the first coat dry then rolled on another coat in the opposite direction as per instructions.  Thrilled to have this done!

One other tiny detail, but major factor in safety for Burger and The Chiweenie Brothers, was fixing the door lock and window button on the passenger side so when the boys want to stick their heads out the window they do not inadvertently step on one of those buttons and cause things to happen that shouldn’t happen. Some plastic rigid packing foam, double-sided carpet tape, and a piece of rubber mat cut to size did the trick.  No more worries about the window going up or down at a most inopportune time.  Enjoy the wind in your adorable furry faces boys!

Thanks for stopping by Two Dogs.  We appreciate your interest in our blog.
Hugs, Shawna

Fowler Falls Day Two

No matter how hot the days, nights this time of year usually cool down really well.  REALLY well.  Like into the low 40s.  The last two nights were no exception and even without a  roof top fan to cool Miss Freedom down during the day, by early morning hours it’s downright chilly.  I hurriedly took the boys out for their just-woke-up pee then we scrambled back into the van where Burger curled up in his front seat nest and The Chiweenie Brothers once again snuggled under the covers while I made some coffee.  The water was already hot as I had boiled some the night before and stored it in a Stanley thermos just to have an easy cup of joe while still stumbling around half asleep. After making coffee in the Melita, I too jumped back under the covers and read for a solid two hours before taking a little siesta. After that it was time to get up and get this day going.

We will have to head home, but not before checking out Upper and Lower Falls. I begin breaking camp, and the dogs need a longer walk than this morning’s offering. Things get packed up and put away, and the boys are raring to go.

A leisurely walk around our campground and the river trail is just what all of us need. The late morning air is warmer; soft and inviting.  This walkabout is where the boys really shine and show how well they are learning the lessons of not barking at certain times.  We stop often to take in the view of the river below us.  It’s so low!  California’s four year drought has taken its toll.

Click on photo(s) to enlarge

Once back at our campsite all that is really needed is to load ourselves up and go.  It’s hard to break away, but I do want to see the other two falls. I get the boys settled in the van, drop our garbage in the bin, and we are off.

It’s not far to Lower Falls.  It’s just as pretty as Middle Falls, but with a different flow pattern.  And it’s easy to see just how much water is NOT spilling over — it should have many, many more CFS than this, but still beautiful.

 Lower Falls

Nearby 14,179 foot Mt. Shasta

We head back the way we came in order to get to Upper Falls, another beauty with another, different look.  It is also evident here just how much more water should be flowing down the McCloud.  The drought has sucked away Mother Nature’s precious resource without putting anything back.

 time and force have worn holes into solid rock
Sadly, it’s time for us to head back home and dream about the next adventure. We head out toward Hwy 89 and head south, pointing Miss Freedom’s nose toward home.  

This is gorgeous country we are so fortunate to live in.  If you haven’t been to northern California —far northern California, come for a visit. You’ll be blown away.  As always, thanks for stopping by Two Dogs. 

Next week it’s back to the mundane; a post about the elastomeric I put on Miss Freedom’s roof.  🙂
Hugs, Shawna

Fowler Falls Adventure

The boys and I couldn’t stand it — we had to plan another camping trip.  This time we stayed a bit closer to home selecting Fowler Falls Campground about 40 miles north west of Burney off Hwy 89 near the town of McCloud.  Soon as Burger, Fries, and Charlie see certain items heading out the door they begin the excited happy dance :); well, maybe twirling and whirling around like demented little dervishes would be more accurate.  They do love to go! Me, too!

The Fowler Falls/Cattle Camp Campgrounds are no reservation, water, and vault toilet sites.  It’s a popular tourist area, but many just drive in to see the Lower, Middle, and Upper Falls never planning to camp, and there were lots of empty sites to select from. It’s also the week before school starts so I am sure that had something to do with it, too.  Very warm, sometimes too blasted hot, is normal for afternoons around these parts this time of year so we chose a site with plenty of lovely dappled afternoon shade. 

 Click photo(s) to enlarge

Despite our first outing through Lassen Park and on to Susanville (read about that HERE,) this one yielded even more insight on some things that need to be changed, things that need to be added, or things that can be left home.  I will be changing how I pack the Cube Cooler, changing up the storage drawers to make things more convenient, as well as putting my cooking items in a different spot.  The anti-gravity chair is going to stay home. I need to find one of those old fashioned webbed chairs to haul around instead.  I have never been very comfortable in the big lounger, it bothers my neck.  If I need to put my feet up I will find something from nature to use.

 
The boys and I hiked the short, 1/2 mile trail to Middle Falls

This trip was also an excellent opportunity for the boys to get in some more socialization practice.  My little Charles Barkley is a former street dog who had a broken jaw, and he’s not used to other dogs coming near “his” area. Some people are given the stay away message, too. He lets them know when he doesn’t care for their demeanor. He’s learning there’s a time for the alarm, and a time he needs to be quiet. Slow progress, but he is learning.  Burger, the stubborn wire hair, eggs him on.  Charlie had never seen a deer either I am sure, so he was pretty freaked out when one tried to creep through the trees and through camp to get down to the water.  All in all though they weren’t too terribly bad, and our last day there yielded some really good behavior from him and the other two who are also rescues with varying degrees of abuse problems to work through. They all made progress in those areas this trip.

I couldn’t wait to try out the backpacker’s stove I bought a while back.  Looks like I need a bit more practice with it; it got a lot hotter than I anticipated, and I burned the hot dogs on one side and they weren’t cooked enough on the other.  The fuel used was small twigs. Burger and The Chiweenie Brothers didn’t mind the charred parts of the samples they received, though 🙂 —keep ’em coming mom!

Next morning’s breakfast eggs were cooked using a cast iron skillet and canned fuel.  It took longer than anticipated to cook, but the heat was more even.  And I was so happy to have a decent meal I forgot to take a photo.

 Part Two of our Fowler Falls Adventure coming up tomorrow
We  leave you with a shot of the McCloud River (it’s really just a little creek now) meandering sweetly toward Lower Falls.



Thanks for stopping by Two Dogs!  Hugs, Shawna

Rearranging the Back of Miss Freedom

Good day!  Thanks for stopping by Two Dogs.

This past couple of weeks have been busy. I spent several days working on our Vome. Van + Home = Vome. I stole this word from a fellow van dweller.  Don’t you just love it!  It’s perfect, isn’t it?

When the boys and I got back from our first little adventure I jumped right in to tackle those things I had made note of that I wanted to change.  Mostly it was re-organization but two of the main things I wanted to accomplish were moving the three drawer plastic storage unit from being secured along one of the side doors to having it backed against the bed, and doing something different with the storage area at the back of the van.

Moving that three drawer plastic unit  means I can once again open both side doors.  I realized this needed to be done that first night out when, after a full day in the sun, the van was sweltering inside and it wasn’t cooling down.  Being able to open both the side doors should make a big difference.

The second thing —doing something different with the back.  It was organized, but I didn’t like the way it looked.  I am not opposed to making do and  I make do quite often, but once home I experienced an epiphany. I removed one of the shelves from a four shelf plastic shelving unit I have in the sun room and replaced the board and mickey-moused  wood cube I had in the back supporting the plastic Sterlite drawer units that give me so much storage.  So it went from using this

( sorry, in my excitement I didn’t get a photo of  “before” You’ll have to use your imagination for how this looked with the drawer towers on it. and one shorty unit to support the right end of the board) To this

 It’s organized and looks good too, I think.  The area underneath the shelf will give me room for the two AGM batteries I will need for power storage from the solar panels, and because I bought portable panels, they will have to be stored when we are on the move. Their dedicated space will be right in front of this storage area. 

 DONE! DONE! AND DONE!  

Thanks for stopping by.  Happy Trails!  Hugs, Shawna