Day One: Mounds, IL to Boonville, MO

Day Mileage 277 Miles

Day Two: Boonville, MO to Emporia, KS

Day Mileage 210 Miles

It has been a heck of a battle to get our “groove” during this tour, so that has delayed my posting a little. But I think we have things coming together. We, or dad rather, had spent the past week prior to departure, chasing a short in the wiring of the Vandura eventually deciding to just out right rewire the dash lights of the primary system. It was a hell of a project, but thankfully dad is a wizard with vehicular maintenance, so we weren’t too concerned.

We ended up pulling out of the driveway around 10am  yesterday (Saturday). It was slow going due to stopping in Cape for new tires on the van, a fix to a tire on the Honda, a new luggage topper for the car, a tow dolly from Uhaul and new hookups for the trailer lights. Phew… what a day yesterday turned out to be… and the tour hadn’t even fully begun yet.

Once we got on the interstate, we began noticing some drawbacks. The dolly/van combinations has us limited to a speed range of 55-65mph before it begins to get really squirrelly on the road. Also, once we pulled into Boonville and began installing the new trailer light adapter, the brake lights were failing to work. Not really sure at this time whether they had worked at all. But never the less… dad found himself a new project to keep him up most of the night. Blah… No worries though, after putting in as much open eye time as I could, I crashed and woke to a brake light working van.

It was a great meeting of the folks. Believe it or not, my fiancee and I have been together for about 5 years and the parents had yet to meet. Was going to be at the wedding, but our initial date had to be rescheduled, so a detour on our cross country trip was the next best thing. It went great, had some dinner, chatted a bit and Jane’s father helped mine for a while getting that wiring harness for the trailer installed.

It’s always great to visit with family in Boonville and we are going to miss them very much. It’ll be the last time we see them for a few months, so we ended up leaving teary eyed around 10am for our next stop in Emporia, KS, only blowing one fuse to the dash lights in the process. If you haven’t noticed already, when the Casper’s hit the road it’s always an adventure fraught with set backs to be overcome. I guess it would be boring otherwise. 😉

Since things are starting to line out our groove has finally began to set in and we’re now making pretty good time. With about 500 miles under our belt in less than 36 hours of repairs, packing, driving, repairs again, bedding, meeting, greeting and eating… I certainly think its going pretty well. haha

Thankfully some of the time in between the above activities was possible to set aside for taking some photos (my initial intentions, lol). I have a great series of Boonville already that can match with more than I snatched up yesterday. The beautiful thing about the city, is its a river town. Jane’s parent’s home actually overlooks the Missouri river, giving beautiful views of the flowing waterway below.

Tonight we have put down our anchor at the Emporia RV Park and Campground… a little hole in the wall campsite just off I-35. It’s not exactly the best campground I have settled down for the night in, but certainly not the worst. They have a tiny little recreation area (sort of) and a conveniently laid sewage pond directly adjacent to the “fishing” pond… how quaint, haha. But its cheap and about the only exterior lodging around for a while. At least its not a full Deliverance like experience. However, the night is still young…

We have the tent up, the chairs out, the beds aired up (yeah, we roll like that) and the dogs are tied down. We’re grilling up some burgers and ending this day in rustic fashion. With the stars shining bright above our heads and the mosquitos feasting upon our bodies.

So the personal portions of the trip have now been completed, now on to tomorrow’s leg of the trip, from Emporia to Dodge City and finally a lay down in Clayton, NM…

For anyone with knowledge of Dodge City and the Rita Blanca National Grassland area around Clayton, NM… Please let me know of areas of interest. Would love to follow some attractions of those reading.

… till tomorrow night, I bid thy readers, adieu.