Thursday, March 26, 2020

Pandemic Flight and Home Again!

I made the decision to set out for home immediately after I finished writing my blog post on Tuesday, March 17th. 

Precautions were taken to keep as safe as possible. I tried to stay away from, or drive directly through large cities. When stopping for fuel, I never went inside unless I had no choice. I used hand sanitizer, and Clorox wipes after returning to the truck. I cleaned the steering wheel, grab handles, door handles, my wallet and credit card, and phone a lot! I also showered after I arrived at camp and got set up. I put on clean clothes after the shower and washed the clothes I wore that day. 

After checking weather forecasts and coming up with a tentative route, I packed everything and hitched up. We were on the road by noon. We did 333 miles on day one. 

Our first night was spent in Shreveport, Louisiana. After getting the utilities hooked up, the owner drove by and warned me there were tornado watches in the area and where to go in the event of a tornado. Fun times! 

We did our walk and went inside to wait it out. What a night. We had high winds, pounding rain, small hail, and very little sleep. 

Day 2
After checking the weather forecast, I decided we had to change our route. There was a big storm moving across the Rockies, and the chance of getting caught in a winter weather situation was a real concern, so we stayed south and headed across Texas. 

After driving 401 miles, we stopped for the night in Sweetwater, Texas. I can't even remember what the town or park looked like. 

Day 3
Continuing our southern route, we were headed for El Paso, Texas. 

We stayed at the same park I always choose when stopping in El Paso. They have long pull-throughs and a fenced dog run. We drove 431 miles on day three. 
Day 4
From El Paso, we crossed the border into New Mexico and again into Arizona. I had absolutely no idea what time it was that evening because we had two time zone changes in just a couple of days and then went into Arizona where they don't do Daylight Savings Time. 

We stopped for the night at a little campground between Tucson and Phoenix, AZ. We managed 349 miles that day. 
Day 5
We were headed into Nevada on day 5. Nevada is very remote, and unless you're on a major interstate, there are very few places to get fuel. With that in mind, I planned for a long day. 

We traveled 485 miles stopping in Beatty, NV. It was windy and frigid in the high desert.   

This was one of our rest stops that day. Plenty of social distancing and places for Murphy to run. 

Day 6
We continued our trek through Nevada. 
Two-lane roads with a lot of truck traffic were on the menu today. 

This rest area stop was beautiful. It was warm, and there was nobody else around, so Murphy got in a good run. 

As always, I was taking pictures of Max and Bridget. What can I say? Don't they look immaculately clean? Ha! Not so much. Buy silver vehicles people!

There aren't a lot of places to camp with hookups out here, so I decided to stop in Winnemucca, NV. I have family there but didn't make contact because I didn't want to endanger them. We drove 350 miles on Day 6.

Winnemucca is a small town and quite remote, so I thought this might be an excellent time to pick up a few things from the store as we were running low. This was the first time I unhitched the truck and trailer since we left New Orleans. 

After my little shopping trip, I hitched the truck and trailer again. I wiped all the groceries down with bleach wipes and put it all away. 

Day 7
Goodbye Winnemucca. During this trip, I had been watching news and websites and being told by family and friends what was going on in Washington and Oregon. Shortly after I left Winnemucca, I got a text from my son-in-law telling me Oregon was shutting down all RV parks in the state immediately. 

I waited until regular business hours and called the park in Oregon, where I had a reservation for that night. They were very unclear about what was happening but said they'd call me back. 

As it turned out, because I was only staying one night and the rule went into effect that night at midnight, I was fine and could come on in. Thank goodness! 

We spent the night in Culver, Oregon. Our drive on day 7 was 384 miles. It was COLD in Culver. Thank goodness we had electricity for the heat. 

Day 8
We were up with the birds! Today we will be home. I started looking at possible routes while enjoying my coffee. Things were not good. Every route I checked had a high mountain pass with snow and ice on the roads. 
In the end, I decided to go about 100 miles out of the way so I could avoid that mess. Our final day was 320 miles. We pulled into my brother's place at around 3:30 in the afternoon. They came out and helped me get parked and setup. 

Murphy is over the moon, happy to be home. He was a trooper, but it was a long, hard week for both of us. We drove 3,050 miles (50 hours) in 8 days. 

We have no plans other than to wait out this virus. Stay well, everyone!


  1. Wow that is a lot of driving! Good job making it home. I think you made the best decision. Stay safe

    1. In hind site, New Orleans seems to be getting hit hard. I'm glad I'm home. You stay safe and well.

  2. Wow, you did it! It's good to know your home safe and sound. Now you can relax, enjoy being where you are and just settle in for a while. Stay safe and well, - Mary

    1. Thanks Mary! I'm trying to figure out what I want to accomplish while I'm sitting still. Stay well.

  3. Wow what a trip , that was some driving . I read a lot of blogs and glad most everyone is getting to a safe place . Stay safe and be careful and hopefully this to shall pass quickly . Vern in Boise

    1. Hi Vern! If I have to be stuck somewhere, this is the place. You take care and be well.

  4. Those were long hard days of driving for you. Glad you got home safe and sound now you can snuggle down and wait for this pandemic to be over!

    1. Thanks Gail!
      Murphy and I have been doing a lot of snuggling since we got home. You be safe and well!