Friday, July 31, 2015

Finally Settled

Sunday, July 26

Today was moving day all over again. Because of the flooding potential, and the daily drive, we decided that living in Cisco would be better for us, even though we loved the lake and the view.

It too a while to get the rig ready for travel with all the extra stuff we now had. I managed to find a place for most everything, and some stuff we put in my car. 

We finally pulled out about 12. 

Tony pulling Mammoth ahead of me as we drive through the park. This spot was completely covered in 1ft or more of flood waters just a few weeks ago.
A look back across the pond in the park, towards our old site.

We stopped at the Shell station before getting on I-20 to check tires and make sure everything was ok. The drive is not far, but the Mammoth is pretty heavy, I can tell!

We got to the new park in Cisco about 12:45, and it was already pretty hot outside. We got the AC going and decided to wait to unhitch until after we ate. Tony ran and picked up some food, and we ate in the bedroom under the dump of the AC. 

After resting for about 15 minutes, we began to tackle unhitching and leveling. We discovered the site is very unlevel, it slopes down front to back and is a little higher on the door side. With our Ground Control System and some trial and error, we finally got her set up. We had a little issue unhitching the pin, too, because of the tilt and slope. The jaws did not want to open. Finally with much up and down and angled adjusting, the jaws opened enough so we tried to drive out. Yay, it worked! Since this hitch is still new to us, it was a learning experience. 

Finally, we got the slides out and set up. 
See how high she is in front? 

Our little cul-de-sac. At least we have green to look out on from the door side.

This is not the same area we were in last time here, it's actually behind the office area almost the next block.thats good because there are trees and buildings between us and I-20, so you don't really hear the road noise. Right now we are the only ones in this area of the park. Potentially we could have 4 or so more.

Tony starts band camp tomorrow, so I'll start working and settling in. Good news is the cell service is excellent, within sight of a tower less than 1/4 mile away. No wifi at the park yet, but it's coming, they say.

Whew! Good to be HOME. Now to make it that!

Home Sweet Home!

Wednesday, July 22nd

Today was the last day in our sticks and bricks. We officially closed on July 17, and had a few days to get our stuff out the door. It was quite a task to decide, Trash it? Store it? Give it away to family? Sell it? Donate it? Take it to the trailer?

But in the end, I felt good about our decisions and we are moved into Mammoth full-time, for now. I really had no sad feelings about leaving the big house. It has really become a burden in my mind, holding us back from what we wanted to do. So it was good to drive away and not look back. Special thanks to our folks and Tony's brother and sister who helped us out on multiple occasions, in multiple ways! 

When I arrived at Mammoth at 11:30pm, I opted not to unload all the stuff I brought. Tony was out of town and so I just got the bare essentials in. Kitties were already here, they came with him a few days earlier.

The next morning I unloaded it all, and found suddenly we had NO ROOM for all this stuff. Well, that will be the challenge over the coming weeks!

Just a few of the boxes.

Sunrise at Solid Rock RV Park. The pond in the center of the park is very full. 
Our view out the dining room window. Note the new log in that grassy area. I can only assume it was brought in with the flood waters, too big for man to move easily.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Water, water everywhere, again.

Wednesday, July 8th

Although this isn't a trip, it is significant to the Mammoth history. 

Tuesday, July 7th, there was a large line of slow moving storms that moved across the big country and dropped several inches of rain in Eastland county. West of us, Abilene received 7 inches of rain! I think I saw that Eastland got 3.5. 

Well, initially, we didn't think that much about it, until reading that lake levels were again in the rise. Wednesday morning, we read via Facebook that the lake levels has risen 3 feet above conservation level overnight, which begins to flood our park significantly. 

Since we were not able to be there, we became increasingly concerned. I asked if anyone knew the status of the park on a closed FB group, and got these pics. 

Entrance to the RV park. 

Water up to the main office building and the storage shed.

That's the park dumpsters behind that sign!

Water from the lake breeches a small dam and spills into a pond in the center of the park, flooding it as well. This is the small pond overflowing its banks. Our baby is in the group on the left.

Based on the photos of the flooding, here is what I think is happening to the park. (This is my guess, because we have not been there to witness the worst of the flooding.)

Luckily, we are on higher ground near the back of the park, so not in danger of getting water in the rig unless they have 7' or more above.

The park manager didn't have time to pull his trailer out, he is in site 40. Here's a link to pics.

The lake got to 5.68' above conservation level, which is higher than it was back in March. Very scary, since this happened all from run-off from storms a good day before. The lake rose that much in just 18 hours. 

We had already considered moving to Cisco before, but the possibility of flooding and an El NiƱo weather pattern  predicted this fall, we are seriously looking at our options. 

Happy 4th in the Mammoth!

Saturday, July 4th

I know this doesn't really count as a trip, but in a way, it was -- a mini vacation in the Mammoth. When we returned home from the Goshen trip, we knew we'd be packing to move over the next three weeks. We decided to take Mammoth back to Lake Leon, so it would not be in our way, and we had some "credit" due to the displacement during the flooding in May. 

Tony took the Mammoth back on the 24th of June. On July 4th, we decided to go out to check on her, check our mail and enjoy the lake for the 4th. 

We got up early and drove out to Lake Leon and the park was quite full. Lots of people out visiting, boating, playing in the water, fishing, and having a good time. 

After lunch and some running around Eastland and Cisco, we returned to the trailer. 

Earlier in June we finally purchased the new toilet we wanted, had it shipped to our home, so brought it with us to the trailer. We removed the old one and installed the toilet. It went in pretty easily, but we quickly noted that the fitting on the back for the new attached spray nozzle was leaking, and no way to get to it without removing the toilet! Tony removed and tightend the clamp that was leaking, then reinstalled. No leaks! 

Securing the new toilet required some interesting techniques. 

While he was working, I got the grill out and set up. Tony then grilled steaks we got from Brookshires, and we also had baked potatoes. It was terrific to enjoy our meal watching the beautiful FULL lake. 

Steak, baked potato and a beautiful  view!!

After dinner we walked around the park a bit, then went and got our folding camp chairs to set up and watch fireworks. We heard the La Mancha Ranch, just around the cove from us, was going to have a fireworks show, so we set up our chairs near the shoreline so we could watch. Many other folks from outside the park were coming in as well to watch. 

As dusk approached, many folks around the edge of the lake had impressive fireworks of their own. We must have seen 6-6 other "shows" going around the edge of the lake. They looked small, being a ways away, but they were impressive to see as you swiveled your head around to view them all. 

Tony sitting at the edge of the lake, with a "show" visible on the horizon

At about 10pm, the La Mancha show began. It was closer to us, so it was loud and more enjoyable, easier to "oooh and aaaah" while watching.

Show in the foreground is La Mancha, the one to the right is just another show going on further around the lakeshore.

 Also people within the park were setting off fireworks over the small pond in the center of our park. This was extremely loud and worrisome (for risk of falling embers) but they only did this till about 11. 

Flag basked in the blue light of our awning LEDs.

We called it a night and headed inside. With our fan running, we luckily did not hear many more fireworks. 

Sunday, July 5th 

We did some projects around the rig in anticipation of moving into it permanently, including sorting and labeling the plastic bins we have in the upper cabinets around the living room. We ultimately headed home about 3pm. Although it wasn't a towing trip, it was a Mammoth vacation!