Friday, July 13, 2012

7.12.2012 Double Inspection

Today was a travel day from Fish Creek Campground in Glacier National Park to Farragut State Park in Athol, Idaho. While it’s not so far as the crow flies, the roads didn’t follow the crow so we traveled north and south and north and south in order to go west. More beautiful valleys, timber, logging trucks, and old but operational farms.

We experienced an poorly executed attempt at fleecing this morning. We stopped at the Conoco at the west end of Columbia Falls for gas for the truck and LP for the trailer. They use a scale rather than a meter for the LP and after topping off the tank told me it took 30 pounds. Rather difficult to do with a 25 pound capacity tank that was 25% full to start with!

The Lite Cylinder we use is made from fiberglass. As a result, you can see the level of the fuel in the tank, but the tank outside dimensions are similar to that of a 30 pound tank. After a short discussion and a bit of explanation about the features of the fiberglass tank, he decided he’d calculated the weight wrong and it really took 18 pounds!

I was rather surprised to be subjected to a fairly extensive mandatory roadside boat inspection this morning.  State of Montana was inspecting all boats, traveling both directions, wanting to know when it was last in the water, where, was it clean, etc.  They’re concerned about various invasive species.  I was even more surprised when we were subject to a similar inspection north of Sandpoint, Idaho.  At least they didn’t make me unload it.  In both cases they were inspecting ALL watercraft, not just power boats.

We did manage to take one picture today – the sign at the Idaho state line. If anyone is paying attention and wonders, we don’t have a picture of a Montana sign. When we crossed into Montana in Yellowstone National Park, the location was noted with the classic NP style wooden board with carved letters and didn’t deserve a picture.

There was some road construction in Sandpoint, Idaho that resulted in a detour through town, including one of those classic tree-lined residential streets. I’m sure the residents must appreciate all the truck and RV traffic through their neighborhood, while I appreciated the tunnel created by the mature trees. Beautiful!

Our campsite for tonight was selected based on mileage and the availability of power. It’s another 90 degree day and we’re enjoying the air conditioner! BJ reports the showers are clean, hot, free, and don’t have a timer! (The Glacier showers were very clean, required a free 5 minute token, and ran out of hot water in the evenings.) The site here is a nearly level pull-through with a very nice, level table & tent area. We had a couple bars of Verizon 3G at the office when we checked in. In the campsite we have a weak 3G signal that would benefit from an antenna and amplifier.

Update:  I discovered there is more than one reason to haul a ladder.  I thought it was to put the canoe on the rack.  Turns out it’s also to get the shuttlecock off the roof!

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