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The Flyover States

Work brought me to Washington DC this week and as I fly home today, I do so passing high above the flyover states.  Throughout, I manage to stay productive – emailing and instant chatting with my coworkers courtesy of technical wizardry that is in-flight WiFi.

By most accounts just another workday, albeit this one high above the clouds.

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Site 25


The plan today was supposed to involve a quick drive from one campground to another, the latter being William Kent, a national forest campground located in popular Tahoe city.

On paper the plan seems sound – drive the scenic 20 miles or so over a beautiful pass before descending into Tahoe City, whereupon we’d set-up shop in a location offering easy (ie- walkable) access to the town.

That was the plan anyway.

In reality what we arrived to was a cramped campground, packed with people, trailers, and no shortage of twisty roads complemented with perfectly (ill)situated trees and boulders which will test even the most experiences drivers.  It would have been fun if I had been playing a video game, not hauling around my home.

In a nutshell, it was a shit-show.

Foolishly ignoring the inner voice advising us otherwise, Kelly and I went about our typical routine – she helping me navigate blind spots using combination of hand signals and vocal commands.  Despite our best efforts, and slightly bent steps, site 25  defeated us today. 

Our first complete parking failure.

With my head hung low, I slowly began the process of navigating the truck and rig back to the park entrance while Kelly sheepishly walked back to negotiate a refund.  And with that we left.


But alas … there is a good ending to this otherwise harrowing story.  

When life offers lemons, why not make lemonade?  And that is exactly what we did by hauling ass directly back to Martis Creek campground in Truckee. 

Now, comfortably situated in a huge site and not dealing with a mob of people or horrific Tahoe City traffic, we find ourselves sipping a cool, sweet, summertime drink.

So F-off site 25 … you may have won the battle, but Kelly and I won the war.



Today’ plan was to relocate from Portola to Truckee, about 45 minutes away.  Our destination was Granite Flat Campground, which upon arrival immediately underwhelmed us.  Oddly shaped, tight sites, and located about 30 feet off a major highway, we were not at all impressed with this campground.

Debating our options, Kelly quickly recalled a recent social media post referencing a first-come, first serve campground about 20 minutes drive away.

Having convinced me eschew the existing reservation at Granite Flat, Kelly and I  rolled the dice – arriving to Martis Creek Campground at 6:30pm on a Friday.  Despite the odds against doing so, we snagged a spot at this sweet campground.

Sometimes the universe throws us a bone.

Lucky us.


The All Important Shower


Like many campers, our Airstream came equipped with both an indoor and outdoor shower.  Weather permitting, I much prefer to shower outside.  Not only is there more space, but I feel like I’m somehow more connected to nature.

Silly, I know.

Unfortunately, the showerhead Airstream provides is a total piece piece of shit.  Pathetically, it is made of cheap plastic and offers no ability to control water flow – a feature critically important for water conservation when dry camping.

Knowing something had to give, I devised a simple DIY hack, which has been serving me well.  First, I removed the worthless showerhead, replacing it with a $10 metal (ie – heavy duty) garden nozzle offering a “shower” setting, in addition to a few other selections (mist, soak, stream pray etc.).

Instead of permanently connecting the replacement nozzle to the hose, I installed a simple brass quick connect, and in the process, freeing up already tight space in the shower nook.  I store the nozzle in a bin and simply quick-connect to the hose when desired.

This set-up has been serving me well for about a year with no issues.  More, the entire hack cost less than $20.

Not as easily impressed, Lilly hates how quick and convenient the set-up is to deploy.