Drive Back to West Yellowstone

Trip Start May 25, 2009
Trip End Jun 23, 2009

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Flag of United States  , Montana
Sunday, June 14, 2009

It was a good thing we didn't have much to do today besides get ourselves to camp in West Yellowstone, because when we turned on the engine it told us there was "low oil pressure" and kept shutting off! Jim checked the oil level several times but all seemed in order, so we were stymied as to what possibly could be wrong!  While he was poring over the owner’s manuals the owner of the RV park and another RV’er came to see what the problem was.  (But what else would you expect from a park with such great service?)  :)

Eventually the three of them figured out that the emergency system was turning the engine off to prevent “catastrophic failure” due to low coolant level instead, so Jim ran into town and bought more and we were on our way.  However, per the usual all of this took several hours to A) diagnose and B) remedy, so by the time we got on the road it was probably near 3:00 PM and I had totally forgotten to take pictures of our wonderful park in the meantime!  :P  So the ones I posted two days ago are from their website – but they show you much better than I could how close we were to the river!  What they don’t show you is the incredibly friendly service we got from the moment we checked in until the moment we left – I miss that park already.  :(

Right now we are “boondocked” at the Baker’s Hole campground only three miles outside of West Yellowstone.  These USFS areas cost only $14 per night, so for the three nights we plan on staying it will cost the same as just one night at a typical park!  We are a little bit over budget so far on this trip plus we just extended it by 4 days (nevermind how or why), so we are going to try to stay on the cheap for the rest of the time if possible.  Luckily Jim found a great government website that gives site lengths, directions, maps, etc. so searching for these unadvertised places is going to get much easier.  There aren’t any hookups at the site we are at, but some places have electric, there’s a dump station down the highway just a few miles, and besides that we have a 100 gallon water tank so who cares!  :)

 We are also cooking our own dinner here in the motorhome tonight, which sadly is one of the first times we have done that the entire trip!  Between arriving late to our campsites and being totally thrilled to eat anywhere that we can’t in Mammoth (which, let’s face it, is just about anywhere!!), we haven’t been making much at home besides cold cereal in the morning and the occasional salad or sandwich.

  Jim says that by dry camping and cooking in we are taking our RV’ing to the next level!  It sounds silly, but it’s really true.  It’s relatively easy to pull into a full-service facility and plug everything in, but it is harder to find the non-commercial sites, conserve resources and plan your own meals while traveling.  Doing all that will stretch our travel dollars though, so it makes great sense – besides, we also like boondocking better because the sites are more wooded and it feels fun, like camping!

The only BAD thing about boondocking is that, as its name implies, we are just too far out of town limits to get cell phone service.  And that means (gasp!) NO INTERNET!  So I apologize about the slow entries the last few days and today's really shoddy picture choices!  Since I don't have many new ones uploaded, I thought I'd feature a setup that Jim thinks we sill try on our next trip -- a motorcycle with sidecar for two kids AND a trailer in the rain!  And the other two pictures are the "Devil's Postpile" of Yellowstone.  Sorry, but ours is better.  ;)
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