Wildlife on Parade . . .

Friday, May 31st

Jan talked to Brandi this morning about their new house. The closing went off with no problems yesterday, and the moving people showed up this morning to start the move. By the time Jan talked to her, they were just about finished loading up

She’s so excited that they will be sleeping in their new home tonight.

We left the beautiful view here at the Likely Place Golf & RV Resort at little before 10am, got back on US395 and headed north for Bend, OR

I was happy to find out from a guy in a Class C parked next to us that we were in for a nice drive. He had just come down from Bend and said although it was State Roads (SR) all the way, they were nice two-lane roads with wide shoulders, wide enough, if turns out, for us to be able to pull over for a rest stop with no problems.

One thing that was kind of interesting on the trip was all the animals we saw along the way. Before we even got out of the park, we saw both chipmunks and prairie dogs. But I think the most unusual were the White Pelicans we saw along Tule Lake, CA, just before we crossed into Oregon. We’ve seen plenty of them at Galveston Bay RV Park where we spend the winter, but in the middle of northern California?

White Pelicans

One thing I’ve always found interesting about them is the fact that they’re only white when they’re sitting.

White Pelican 1

When they’re flying you see that they’re actually White & Black Pelicans.

White Pelican 2

And to go with the pelicans, we also had a lot of seagulls as well.


While we were still in CA the land was still relatively flat. And driving through here, we saw a large coyote loping along side the road.

Likely to Bend 1

But soon after we entered Oregon, the terrain started to get more hilly, but still very scenic.

Likely to Bend 2

Likely to Bend 3


We even got a view of Mt. Shasta, at this point about 50 miles away. From the right spot it can be seen from as far away as 140 miles.

Likely to Bend 4


And here it is again about 90 miles away.

Likely to Bend 5

Along here is where we saw our last unusual animal, a large white llama in a pen behind a farm house.

We got to the Bend-Sunriver Thousand Trails park a little after 3pm, and quickly noticed some changes, one of them disappointing. The first was the fact that we no longer check in at the ranger station, but they’ve rerouted the entrance to pass by the office where you then go in and register.

The second one was the fact that Big Jim’s Coffee Wagon was no more.

Big Jim's Coffee Wagon

Parked at the exit, we regularly stopped for great coffee and delicious breakfast sandwiches as we left for sightseeing trips like our visit to Crater Lake when were here two years ago.


After signing in, we unhitched the toad by the lodge and drove over to where we parked last time we were here. We were happy to see our old site was empty. In fact the entire ‘H’ section was empty. Nice.

We got parked and set up with no trouble, but then my problems started. No matter what I did I could not get a satellite signal. Last time I used this hole in the trees.

Sat View

But that was when I had the old manual dish.

I spent 4 or 5 hours moving my Winegard Carryout Dome around, trying to get a consistent signal with no luck. Sometimes I would seem to get something and then it would go away.

I was using a manual compass, my cellphone compass, and three different cellphone programs that show me where the satellite is located in the sky. And all of them were telling me something different.

I must have shifted the dish around about 20 times, until finally I just gave up and called it a night. I was too pooped to even do a blog. Off to bed.

Saturday, June 1st

Getting up at my usual 10am, (remember, I usually don’t go to bed until around 2am), I fixed us coffee and we just enjoyed the view and the smell of the surrounding woods.

Yes, I was trying to avoid fooling with the satellite dish any more. But finally Jan’s pointed looks and loud sighs stirred me to action. Well, that and threats of physical violence if I didn’t get her some TV. About this time Nick Russell called to check in, and give me a few moments reprieve. But finally I had to get back to work. I put the dish back in the location where I seemed to get some sort of signal last night. A couple of times my DVR started to come online and then stopped.

Normally I just plug in the DVR, set up the dome outside, and then by the time I get back in the rig I’ve got pictures. But that wasn’t working this time, so I tried something different.

Since I was occasionally getting some sort of signal, I wondered what it looked like. So I set the DVR to the Signal Meter screen and put the dome in search mode. Getting back inside I noticed that I was getting signal readings that would come and go, with a high of about 73%, not great, but certainly usable. I expected the dome to lock in on the satellite and shut off. But that’s not what happened.

The dome kept searching without locking in, and then timed out and shut off. So why didn’t the dome just lock in, even on a weak, but usable signal. The only thing I can figure is that it has minimum signal level it will accept, and it’s more than 73%. So, new plan.

I restarted the dome searching, and while Jan watched the meters on the TV, I stayed outside and the first time it reached 73% again, I pulled the power cord.


We had signal. But because the low signal equals low bandwidth, it took a few minutes for the channel lineup to download, but after about 5 minutes we had pictures. Yeah!

With this problem out of the way, Jan and I headed down to the park office to check on some things. Since the park doesn’t have sewer connections, I wanted to check on the honey wagon schedule (Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday. Sign up the day before), and also let them know I have a couple of packages coming in, the missing ones being forwarded from the Lake Tahoe park.

Jan also wanted to check out the park’s Book Exchange, and drop off some books. I guess it worked out, because she dropped off 8 and came back with only 5. I also dropped off a bundle of Gypsy Journal newspapers while we were there.

Right next door was the park’s Country Store, where Jan found some new dishes, moose themed, of course.

Bend TT Moose Plates

Then before we left, Jan checked out the produce stand that is now located where Big Jim’s Coffee Wagon used to be, and came away with some fresh cherries and tomatoes. Mmmm, fresh cherries.

For dinner, we had Rudy’s BBQ from Texas. Before we left, we bought a bunch and froze it. So tonight we had ribs, sliced brisket, and jalapeno sausage links, along with baked beans and chips. And of course, Rudy’s great BBQ sauce slathered on it all. A really good meal

Finishing up for tonight, here’s a shot of our site and the surrounding area.

Bend TT 1

Bend TT 2

Really nice, and with no neighbors within sight, really quiet.


Thought for the Day:

Don’t take it personally. It’s just you…