Posted by: harleyhawk43 | November 17, 2016

Year Seven


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(Hawk and Karen’s two books on their full time RV travels are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

363 Full color pictures!

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Well, we made it! Hauling a 2006 Forest River Cherokee Wolfpack with our 2006 F-350 Ford Diesel pickup, we, once again, for the 13th time made it across our wonderful country. We are so fortunate to be able to do this! For those of you new to our blog, we made a decision 7 years ago to let go of most of our belongings and fixed residence to join the full time RV fraternity. Since that decision, we have never looked back. Despite fairly regular impediments in our path, we have persevered and continued to focus on our objectives. They are;

  1. To be free to travel wherever we please in the U.S.
  2. To live within our budget
  3. To share our experiences with our children, grandchildren and friends
  4. To encourage like minded individuals to “take the plunge”.
  5. To record our motorcycle/RV adventures and encourage others to give it a try.

This particular time, we made it to Arizona without any mishaps. Then, the usual happened, a warning light on our dash, indicating an electric brake issue. We did not panic, since we have been through this type of thing many times. We were at Lost Dutchman RV Park in Apache Junction and called the nearest RV Mobile Shop. No problem, even though they and everyone else were straight out, they said they would be out to our site on Saturday November 12. Excellent! We waited all day and they never showed up. Since it was the weekend, we could not call them. So, we developed a plan; send them a voice mail and a text, expressing our disappointment in their lack of keeping their appointment and informing them we would be at their shop first thing Monday morning.

So, off we went, somewhat apprehensive about the brakes, but not overly concerned, because we had a flat route to the repair shop. They apologized for the mix-up, repaired the short in the trailer brakes and we were on our way for the final leg in this year’s journey (Arizona to California (Newport Beach). Below you will see some of the scenes in Apache Junction, near the Superstition Mountains, as we joined our Canadian buddies, Captain Canada and Debbie Dewdrops, for a reunion and hiking. We were tired from traveling and they took advantage of that during our 2 day dominoes tournament.

We made our final leg a two day trip, due to our late departure from the brake repairs and stayed overnight on BLM land, just outside of Joshua Tree N.P..

After a relaxing morning hike Tuesday morning, we drove the final 140 miles and landed in Newport Beach CA  around noontime and spent the rest of the day setting up camp.

After settling in to a routine and familiarizing ourselves with the area, we prepared for a busy weekend of celebrating Thanksgiving early (on Saturday 11/19) and then watching our beloved New England Patriots prevail over San Francisco today. The weather has been good with 50s at night and high 60s during the day. Today and tonight it actually rained!

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(An early Thanksgiving at Huntington Beach with Karen’s extended family)

More pictures of the campground in the next post.

 

Posted by: harleyhawk43 | October 23, 2016

Westward Ho The Wolfpack


Well, since we drew the curtain on Summer about a month ago we have been preparing for our annual trek West. If you are new to our blog, we are getting ready to embark on Year 7 leaving our summer campground in Brant Rock Ma and heading for warmer climes. This year The Red Fox has decided that we will spend most of the Winter in Newport Beach CA at the Newport Dunes RV Park. Headquartered there, we will be within reasonable driving distance to both of her sons, 2 grandsons and daughter-in-law. Below you can see our campground with many vacant spots since the transient campers had to leave by 9/30 unless they wanted to pay extra for October. We stay until October 31 every year and then head out November 1st

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Go to

http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk

or to “Hawk’s Books” on Facebook, for details on ordering our 2 books on our travels, “Hawk and Red Fox-Modern Day Gypsies”, Volumes 1 and 2.

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Our route to Newport Beach will take us about 3,000 miles from the western shore of the Atlantic Ocean to the Eastern shore of the Pacific Ocean. Our route will be Route 3 to Route 128 to The Mass Pike (Route 90) to Route 81, to Route 84, to Route 40 to Route 10. We will stop in Tucson at the Superstition Mountain RV State Park to spend a few days with fellow travelers Captain Canada and Debbie Dewdrops and then complete the final leg to Newport Beach. We will be hauling about 5 tons of trailer and belongings, including our 2 Harleys, 2 kayaks and 2 bicycles. The hauling machine is a 2006 Ford F-350 diesel pickup, while The Wolfpack is a 30 foot 2006 Forest River, Cherokee, tag-a-long hitch (not a 5th wheel). Since we purchased both in late 2010, we have logged about 90,000 miles traipsing around the country, following the warm weather.

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Whilst we are sun tanning in the Winter, Hawk is writing books. Besides the two “Gypsy” books, he has written 2 books on Irish Sea Mossing in Scituate MA. His latest, “Seaweed Shanty Town”, can be seen below. This book follows 5 Irish families and 1 Italian family from Ireland and Italy to Scituate and follows them through several generations as they work at gathering seaweed and lobstering.

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Go to

http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk

or to “Hawk’s Books” on Facebook, for details on ordering

seaweed-shanty-town-picture

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Before we leave a week from Tuesday, we will be breaking down the living room, which raises up on a platform to the ceiling, in order to make room for the Harleys and kayaks (the bicycles hang on the ladder on the back of the trailer after the ramp is closed).

Prior to traveling, on the morning of our departure date, we will have the trailer inspected for brake wear, wheel bearing lubrication and other critical maintenance. During the Summer we spray  the undercarriage and hitch mechanism with rustoleum paint (being camped next to the ocean all summer raises hell with rust). We have to have the trailer gone over on the morning of our departure because we live in it all year and cannot leave it at a shop. As we travel across the country in 300 to 350 mile stints, we stay each night in a Walmart parking lot to save on expenses (why pay for lodging when you have your own lodging with you?). Our diesel expenses will be about $700 to $800 for the trip (9 mpg divided into 3000 miles equals 333 1/3 gallons times $2.40 per gallon).

As we move across the country, we will post updates on Facebook for those of you who are curious about the details.

That’s it for now! Catch you on the road! Make America Great again!

 

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Posted by: harleyhawk43 | September 19, 2016

The curtain draws down on Summer


Well, here at the Wolfpack in Brant Rock, Marshfield Mass., the curtain has been drawn on another summer, the 73rd of my life. We are on the ocean here and when I am near the ocean, especially the North Atlantic, I am in a good place. We had a very busy summer and now have begun preparing for pulling up stakes and following the warm weather.

This will be our 7th year of our grand full-time RV adventure and, although not as excited as we were in year one, we still get very excited when we start preparing to depart. If you have been following us for all 6 years, you know that we went to Florida the first 3 years and then out West each Spring from Florida and then directly out to Arizona in years 4 through 6.

This year we will also go directly to Arizona, but only for a short while. Then we will head right to Newport Beach CA and spend most of the Winter there. Before we get into that story though, let’s review the second half of our summer here at Blackman’s Point (See our previous post for early summer).

We had left off after Red Fox’s 70 birthday celebration and my 55th High School reunion.

  1. In early August we took a short trip up to the Bangor Maine area o meet up with our friends from British Columbia whom we hang out with in the Arizona Desert every winter at Imperial Dam, Captain Canada, Debbie Dewdrops, Lonesome Larry and Busty Barb. They were on a tour from B.C. to the maritines and were scooting across the border in New Brunswick for the day.

We had a great lunch at the Seadog saloon, went for a canal walk, caught up on stories and then watch a bunch of crazy people following Pokey Man around on their phones, some almost falling in the canal.

2. On August 28th we participated in a memorial motorcycle ride for a long time friend who died suddenly in early summer. Many riders from both the Upland Riders and the Manomet Mystery Riders attended and we had a great remembrance of past good times in his company.

3. Hawk releases his fourth book, “Seaweed Shanty Town”

During early August, after many months of preparation, I was able to put the finishing touches on my fourth book and second in the Irish Sea Mossing series.

Seaweed Shanty Town is the story of Irish immigrants fleeing the potato famine, landing in the United States at the ports of New York and Boston and then finding their way to a small South Shore town in Massachusetts called Scituate. There they discover a seaweed, Irish Sea Moss, that they are quite familiar with from their home shores in Ireland and proceed to establish a unique industry that lasts for over 130 years.”

It was an immediate hit in the local area and I had 3 separate book selling events in and around the local area. I sold out of all of the first 100 copies and immediately stocked more. If you are interested in this book, go to the link below, set up an account and password and then you will be able to order it, as well as any of my other books or associated videos. At this site, you will get a discounted price as compared to Amazon.

http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk

hawk-and-jerry-pallotta-at-heritage-days                                                          seaweed-shanty-town-picture

(With Jerry Pallotta, children’s author,                                        (Book Cover)

at Scituate Heritage Days)

(“Hawking” the book during Sand Hill’s Labor Day Parade)

4. My daughter’s wedding took place September 10th in Plymouth Mass., America’s Home Town and it was a joyous occasion.

5. And, finally, The Wolfpack closes out another great summer!

(Marshfield Fair)

That’s it for now folks. Stay tuned!

 

Posted by: harleyhawk43 | July 25, 2016

The Summer of 2016 (so far)


Well, here we are about halfway through the summer in the Northern Hemisphere and there’s lots of things going on(in the world and in our little corner). We will stick with our little corner, since the world is in moderate chaos right now. Here is a quick summary of our highlights-

  1. Wolfpack Summer Fun

The grandkids are older and bigger, but the Wolfpack is the same size and so we are gearing down a little on the sleepovers. Here are a few highlights from several visits. four out of six so far, but we are trying to corral the other two. Here you see Patrick, Angus, Margeaux and the new, little guy, Marcus.

2. Dotti’s annual Skimos Motorcycle weekend

Every summer we ride the Hogs up to Jackson N.H. and then take a ride to Rangely Maine. This year we encountered rainy weather, but couldn’t postpone due to everyone having a full summer schedule, so we soldiered on.

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3.Bicycle Ride to the Gurnet

A few weeks ago Red Fox said she wanted to go on a bicycle ride, so I showed her a 20 mile route from Brant Rock, through Green Harbor and then over to Duxbury Beach and down to the Gurnet. It was great except that about 10 miles were hard packed dirt and it was a hot weekend day. Anyway, we made it and the scenery was great.

4. Manomet Mystery Riders Bicycle Ride

This year, due to many members of our motorcycle club not riding anymore and needing a more sedate activity, we formed the MMRBC (Manomet Mystery Riders Bicycle Club). Our first ride was a few weeks ago down in Rhode Island. It was a 20 mile ride with a lengthy lunch break at the halfway mark.

 

 

 

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5. Red Fox hits the big 70

Believe it or not, Red Fox turned 70 June 1st. We hightailed it up to Newburyport for a celebration with her old friends.

That’s it for now! More exciting news soon, including information on Hawk’s latest book. Stay tuned.

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All decked out for Hawk’s 55th High School Reunion.

 

 

 

Posted by: harleyhawk43 | June 13, 2016

Sixth Year Anniversary


Yesterday, June 12 2016, marked the sixth anniversary of the beginning of our great adventure. It was on this day that we picked up The 2006 Wolfpack Toy Hauler at Flagg RV in Uxbridge Mass. with our buddy Roadglide Dave and drove it back to Humarock MA, for a trial run to Laconia Bike Week. For those of you new to our blog, here is a quick summary of our rig.P1040657

The Wolfpack was (and still is) a 20o6 model, manufactured by Forest River. It is 30 feet long, not counting the hitching portion, which you can see in the picture above, underneath the white propane tanks’ white cover. The hauling vehicle, an F-350 Ford diesel xtra cab is also a 2006 model. We had actually purchased the Toy Hauler first and then had to go looking for a truck capable of pulling it, plus our two Harleys, plus all our belongings (approximately 5 tons). The Toyota Tacoma that I had at that time was not even close to being able to haul 5 tons!

We towed her home and prepared for a trip to Laconia Bike Week. You can see all of our adventures on that trip, including all 4 tires blowing out and a blown head gasket, in Volume One of our book, “Hawk and Red Fox-Modern Day Gypsies”, available at

 http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk

or by going to “Hawk’s Books” on Facebook.

The Wolfpack has a ramp up which we are able to ride our Harleys , after collapsing our living room. Then, when we travel across the country, we still have the use of the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom. The pictures below will give you an ides of how it all works.

 

 

On the road, traveling overnight, we still have heat, refrigeration, hot water and propane cooking. We are able to stay overnight in a Walmart parking lot and then move on the next day. Each year when we return to New England for the Summer, we stay at the same campground, Blackman’s Point in Brant Rock MA. For those of you new to our blog, we will review Blackman’s in our next post.

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(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

363 Full color pictures!

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When last you heard from us, we were in Zion N.P. in Utah from 4/7 to 4/20. This is our favorite N.P. and this was our third time there. Two weeks however was enough and we decided it was time to move on and continue heading East towards our home state, Massachusetts.IMG_20160407_184307_520

(Almost ready to leave Zion)

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(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

363 Full color pictures!

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We wanted to visit a few more areas out West before making a beeline home but the weather throughout the West was showing a week of rain no matter where we headed. What to do? We didn’t want to head home yet because our summer campground doesn’t open until May 1 and the weather in New England can really be dismal in early May. The light bulb finally went off and we decided to head to The Great Smokey Mountain N.P. in TN. This is near the infamous Dragon’s Tail road in Deal’s Gap and is a favorite with motorcycle thrill seekers (318 hairpin turns in 11 miles!). I had been there about 9 years ago, but Red Fox had not. So off we went.

It took us 7 days to get there and we did the usual overnight stays at Motel Walmart each night. Here is a quick summary-

4/21-Zion Utah to Winslow AZ

4/22-Winslow AZ to Edgewood N.M.

4/23-Edgewood N.M. to Amarillo TX

4/24-Amarillo TX to Henryetta OK

4/25-Henryetta OK to Conway AR

4/26-Conway AR to Dickson TN

4/27-Dickson TN to Townsend TN-Caves Cove Campground 

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We would have been there in 6 days, but we had 2 blowouts on 4/25 and had to get 4 new tires.

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Advertisement

(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

Order both books and get a free DVD of your choice. The DVD will show the “Kids” riding their “Wild Hogs” at a fabulous National Park. Choose from Bear Tooth Highway or Zion.

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Other excitement along the way-

  1. A big steak and cowboy beans dinner at the Big Texan Steakhouse in Amarillo.
  2. Local redneck boys all showing off their glass-pack mufflers in the Walmart parking lot until 10:30 p.m.
  3. Long, 7 mile windy/hilly back road off route 40 to get to the Dickson TN Walmart
  4.  Long, very narrow, very steep, 9 mile road from Townsend TN to the campground in G.S.M.N.P.

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(Our campsite in G.S.M.N.P)

This campground is one of the quietest we have ever been in and was the most beautifully wooded area we had ever visited. It was a very tight squeeze getting into one of the few sites large enough for the Wolfpack, but we managed after a few tries and a minor dent in the front, right side of the pickup.The weather was iffy and we had to get the Hogs out on the road right away. We rode for 2 days and then hiked and bicycled for 2 days, due to severe thunderstorms predicted for days 3 and 4.

Our first day of riding was on the Dragon’s Tail and our second day was over the mountains to Maggie’s Valley (where I had stayed in 2007? with my Manomet Mystery Rider Club).

*******************************************************************************************************(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

When you get to that site, register with a user name and password and you will be ready to order. For more details on our books, go to Hawk’s Books Facebook Page or to Amazon.

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(In front of the “Dragon” next to the local Harley Shop)

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(The Tree of Shame at the end of the Dragon Tail, in Deal’s Gap N.C.)

Here are 3 video clips from the Dragon Tail ride, including rare footage of Hawk riding (Red Fox reluctantly agreed to wear the video cam)

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Bicycling on Cades Cove Loop

There is a beautiful 11 mile loop road adjacent to our campground in GSMNP. We rode it on our 3rd day there and it was one of the most beautiful rides we had ever taken. It was like going back to the early 1900s. When the park was established they preserved all the cabins and out buildings. Here are some pictures of that ride, including some up close bear shots.

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Our campground-Cades Cove Campground

Here are several shots of our idyllic campground. It was the quietest, most serene campground we have stayed in and quite a change from the campgrounds out West.

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After 5 great days at GSMNP, we packed up and headed for our summer camp in Brant Rock MA. We arrived home to typical gloomy New England Spring weather with the temperature dropping to 41 on our second night home. But that’s a story for our next posting.

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(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

363 Full color pictures!

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Posted by: harleyhawk43 | April 17, 2016

Zion Mount Carmel Highway


Today, after waiting for some windy, unsettled weather to move through during the last two days, we have the Harleys all polished up to ride on Mount Carmel Highway towards Kanab and Fredonia. At that point we will be just north of the Arizona border. We probably won’t go as far as Page AZ. We did this ride last year and the scenery coming through the Zion Canyon is spectacular. I videoed most of it last year. Below is one of the best clips.

Also, shown below, from yesterday, are some fabulous shots of the long horn steers on a farm here called two feathers Farm. These long horns are so much more picturesque than regular steers.

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(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

Order both books and get a free DVD of your choice. The DVD will show the “Kids” riding their “Wild Hogs” at a fabulous National Park. Choose from Bear Tooth Highway or Zion.

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Posted by: harleyhawk43 | April 15, 2016

Kolob Reservoir Road in Zion and Wildcat Hike


(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

363 Full color pictures!

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Yesterday we did a combination motorcycle ride and hike in a part of Zion not visited by most tourists. The scenery was great and the hike was beautiful. See my facebook page for motorcycle videos. Here are some pictures from the hike.

(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

Order both books and get a free DVD of your choice. The DVD will show the “Kids” riding their “Wild Hogs” at a fabulous National Park. Choose from Bear Tooth Highway or Zion.

Posted by: harleyhawk43 | April 12, 2016

Zion Chapter 3


Yesterday we returned to Zion for the third year in a row (Can you tell we love it?). Right away, today (4/10), we redid one of our favorite hikes, Watchman’s, which is conveniently located right near our campsite. I am attaching pictures from last year, rather than redoing them all. Here for your enjoyment once again are the best ones. We were here earlier last year, hence the Saint Paddy’s day regalia in some of the shots.

(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

363 Full color pictures!

 

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(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

Order both books and get a free DVD of your choice. The DVD will show the “Kids” riding their “Wild Hogs” at a fabulous National Park. Choose from Bear Tooth Highway or Zion.

That was 4 days ago. Finally getting time to add more. Here are a couple of videos and some pictures from our hike on Angel’s Landing.We had a fierce hail storm and heavy rain during the hike. The trail got washed out at a couple of points. Very exciting!

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(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

When you get to that site, register with a user name and password and you will be ready to order. For more details on our books, go to Hawk’s Books Facebook Page or to Amazon.

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Posted by: harleyhawk43 | April 4, 2016

Joshua Tree N.P. to Death Valley N.P.


Last week we picked up camp and moved north from Joshua Tree N.P. to Death Valley. We had friends who were there waiting for us and we wanted to catch them before they left. We knew it would be hot, but figured we could handle it. The ride from J.T. to D.V. is about 300 miles and we decided to cut across Mojave National Preserve to get there. We were on the south side of J.T., so we first had to drive across J.T. to 29 Palms. Then we got on Amboy Road and followed it to Amboy. Then a right onto Old National Highway Trail (which I believe is part of Route 66) and then a left onto Kelbaker Road, which crosses Mojave Preserve.

(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

363 Full color pictures!

 

We actually saw more Joshua Trees in Mojave than we did in J.T.. We did hit a snag at Kelso, in that Kelbaker was closed at that point. We had to detour up to Cima and follow the detour to Route 15. This added about 35 miles to our trip. Then we followed 15 south to Baker and got on Route 127 to Death Valley Junction and Route 190.The attached map gives you a general idea. J.T is down towards the bottom, Mojave is in the middle and D.V. is a the top.

Map of Joshua Tree, Mojave and Death Valley

(In the middle of Mojave National Preserve at Kelso. The building in the second picture is the Kelso Railroad Museum. We did not go in because of the detour and long distance we had to cover, but it looked very interesting)

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(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

Order both books and get a free DVD of your choice. The DVD will show the “Kids” riding their “Wild Hogs” at a fabulous National Park. Choose from Bear Tooth Highway or Zion.

***********************************************************************

 

We were greeted warmly by Larry, Barb, Greg and Kathy and were soon all set up next to their rigs. We had a killer domino tournament the next day with the guys emerging victorious.

A couple of days later we took a motorcycle ride to Lone Pine CA by way of Stove Pipe Wells and Panamint Springs. We have some great videos, but the internet is too weak here to post them. We will get them up at a later time. We were here last year and like it here a lot, but it gets hot fast after March ends. Low 90s for the past few days. Below are more pictures of the Forest Service Campground and surrounding areas.

 

***********************************************************************(Hawk and Karen’s two books are available at http://www.nstarsolutions.com/store/home.php?provider=harleyhawk)

When you get to that site, register with a user name and password and you will be ready to order. For more details on our books, go to Hawk’s Books Facebook Page or to Amazon.

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Next stop Zion N.P. again. Stay tuned!

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