Georgia Rally – Day Three

Current Location: River Vista Mountain Village RV Resort, Dillard, Georgia

Our third and final day at the Georgia Chapter of the Heartland Owners’ Club rally here in Dillard, Georgia is also our final full day here. Tomorrow, we pack up and head to Tennessee for the Tennessee Chapter rally.

This morning there was a pitch-in brunch at the clubhouse. Several folks headed to the kitchen a little early and made up scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage and pancakes. Others brought in their dishes to share. All of the food was excellent.

After brunch cleanup, we wandered around to visit and found others out touring various members’ trailers. There are two new Landmarks here and a couple other interesting trailers, including a first-year Landmark with a low serial number (200?) in really excellent shape. It was fun looking at the various modifications that others have done and showing off a few of our own.

This evening was a cookout. The club bought hot dogs, brats, burgers, etc. and several of the men grilled the food while others prepared things inside. There was also more pitch-in items. Dinner was great. After the dinner, we all lined up for a group photo.

Club banner

Club banner

Grilling Team

Grilling Team

Hungry customers

Hungry customers

Georgia Rally – Day Two

Current Location: River Vista Mountain Village RV Resort, Dillard, Georgia

Malcolm got up late this morning (after 9 am) due to having problems sleeping last night (he was up until 3 am). The sound of work next door (at the Beletti’s coach) encouraged him to get moving, if for no other reason than to offer his supervisory assistance. Val stayed in our trailer and baked stuff this morning.

After making his way outside, Malcolm saw a flurry of activity going on on the roof of the Beletti’s trailer.

Jim Beletti and crew working on the roof of his coach

Jim Beletti and crew working on the roof of his coach

Noting that there was more than sufficient help next door, Malcolm went back to our coach to see if he could do any more work on the cable TV system. Yesterday, with Jim Beletti’s guidance and tools, Malcolm replaced all of the connectors throughout the coach with better ones than what they put on at the factory. It seemed to help somewhat. Today, he replaced the outside cable. It is hard to tell how much help any or all of that work did since the campground cable system seems to have its moments. We’ll see later on down the road.

After lunch, we were relaxing outside when it started thundering in the distance. Eventually, it just started raining. Not really much wind, but we rolled up the awning just in case. We had already put the chairs away to keep them dry.

Here comes the rain

Here comes the rain

Seizing the opportunity of having the outside of the trailer all wet with rain, Malcolm donned his raincoat and grabbed the long-handled Windex thing with the pad that you clean your windows with. Since the rain subsided about the time he was done cleaning the windows, he used the long-handled squeegee to clean the soapy stuff off. The windows looks much better from inside now.

This evening was a pitch-in dinner at the clubhouse. The food was great and so was the company.

Dinner Time

Dinner Time

Here is a picture down our “street” showing several of the Heartland rigs here. There are twenty-some Heartland units here for the rally, including a couple of new units or first-time rally-goers. We’ve even adopted one family with a new non-Heartland trailer that ended up in the middle of our group on our street.

Rally-goers

Rally-goers

Georgia Rally – Arrival

Current Location: River Vista Mountain Village RV Resort, Dillard, Georgia

We packed up this morning at Fort Toulouse and stopped to empty all the tanks before hitting the road to Georgia. It was a fairly quiet trip considering we drove around Atlanta on a weekday. Probably driving around Atlanta around 11:00 on a weekday helped a bit. We pulled off at an exit on the northeast side of town to figure out where we were going exactly and to have lunch. We haven’t been using GPS much except to plot a course, instead using map apps more as you would a paper atlas.

Once underway, we stopped again to go ahead and fuel up instead of arriving on a nearly empty tank. The terrain started getting more hilly as we headed northeast into the north Georgia mountains.

North Georgia mountains

North Georgia mountains

We arrived at the campground mid-afternoon. Since we had prepaid for our site some time back, we only had to pick up our packet and head to our site. It is a really nice campground, er, RV resort. Very well kept and the area is scenic.

Our site, complete with actual working gas light.

Our site, complete with actual working gas light.

Other Heartland Owners Club members slowly trickled in throughout the evening and the usual sitting around and chatting commenced once it got dark.

Today’s license plate finds were pretty good considering the route and medium to light traffic. 27 out of 51 plates found – including Hawaii.

Today's license plates

Today’s license plates

Spring Brreak

Current Location: Harvest Moon RV Park, Adairsville, Georgia

Today’s goal was to drive halfway from Tallahassee, Florida to London, Kentucky, where we are headed. Somewhere around the north part of Atlanta would be halfway. Yesterday, after finding a Passport America park to stay in overnight, Malcolm looked to see if there were any convenient Passport America parks between Atlanta and Chattanooga. He found one – Leisure Time RV Park in Adairsville, Georgia.

We headed out from west of Tallahassee and followed the GPS up US 319 from Tallahassee to Tifton, Georgia. By taking this nice cross-country route, we shaved off probably 120 miles from the trip as opposed to taking I-10 to I-75 and then heading north.

Today was fairly windy, as well, and it showed when we filled up the truck’s tank. Two different stops netted around 8 MPG each. Heading north on I-75, today, we had the wind hitting us from the driver’s side and somewhat to the front.

As luck would have it, we hit Atlanta at rush hour. It wasn’t too bad, but frustrating at times, nonetheless. We made it through unscathed and headed on to Adairsville. You’ll notice that we mentioned finding Leisure Time RV Park via Passport America but that we’re staying at Harvest Moon RV Park. Turns out that they are next door neighbors and we turned one turn too soon. The GPS listed Harvest Moon, but not Leisure Time. So, rather than circling around and heading further down the road, we just checked in here.

After leveling up the trailer and running out the slides, Val started dinner while Malcolm finished hooking up utilities. Power was no problem, but the water hose, filter and flexible hose fitting for the filter each decided to leak in turn. With the temperature barely above freezing and with frustration setting in, Malcolm decided just to fill the water tank about half full and stow all the hoses and filters away for later.

We’ve decided for just overnight stops, especially if we’re not unhooking from the truck, that we’ll just use the water tank and pump instead of wrestling with the water hose. The heated hose we bought is rather stiff, long and cumbersome, especially when the temperature is so cold.

Tomorrow, we should be in London, Kentucky where we’ll stay for a few days to visit Malcolm’s brother and his family through Monday morning.

By the way, the title of this post came from an electronic message sign along I-75 warning about possible traffic due to “Spring Brreak” (with two R’s). Given the unseasonably cold temperatures, we thought the misspelling somewhat appropriate.

 

Beautiful Day

Current Location: Stone Mountain Park Campground, Stone Mountain, Georgia

Today was the most beautiful day in a long time. It was sunny and clear and got up into the 60’s. We really enjoyed it.

We started out by toting our laundry over to the next camp loop where the bathhouse has laundry facilities. We loaded up a couple of washers and sat outside on a bench with our iPads to make sure the Internet was still intact. While sitting there, Malcolm noticed what looked like some type of growth on a nearby tree. He took this picture of it and declared that it was probably a dead bee/wasp/hornet nest of some type.

Guess they all moved out.

Guess they all moved out.

We had three loads of laundry and only two machines were available at any one time, so the third load went in last. We had friends – Mark and Karen Brown – coming over to visit at noon and it was obvious that the last load was going to still be in the dryer at that time. Since there is hardly anyone in the campground, we decided to let the last load continue drying while we went over to wait for the Browns to arrive.

We gave them a tour of the trailer and headed out to get some lunch. We stopped by and retrieved the last laundry load (towels) on the way out. We ate at a German restaurant in old Stone Mountain. It wasn’t bad, but wasn’t outstanding particularly.

After arriving back at the trailer, we sat outside in the great weather and talked with the Browns some more. One reason we invited them over is that Mark had indicated to Malcolm that they were interested in full-time RV’ing at some point in life and were weighing the motorhome vs. trailer thing. It was a really fun visit.

We had dinner in the trailer this evening, finally eating the spaghetti sauce that’s been thawing for a few days now, waiting for us to actually eat in the trailer instead of a restaurant. That’s one area we are planning on addressing – living less like tourists and saving a bit of money eating in more often.

We have sort of purposefully ignored any budgeting activities our first month on the road, but realize we need to buckle down and start watching the money. Malcolm came up with a very reasonable budget that works well with the new, reduced income level and we will start implementing that beginning March 1st.

We will probably share our budgets in some fashion on the blog as we found that others that shared their budgets have really helped us realize what we’ll need on the road and to set our budget up. Not sure how we’ll do that at this point, but we’ll let you know how it goes.

Here are a couple more pictures from the campground to leave you with.

View of Stone Mountain through the trees.

View of Stone Mountain through the trees.

View out our dinner table window this evening.

View out our dinner table window this evening.