Kent and Carol - Mobile travel blog

View from Hump Tower - Look out window to see cars going...

Remote control to operate the engines while in the rail yard.

The boat on the Upper Dells tour.

Some of the Sandstone formations.

Look real close and you can see the dog jumping between the...

Sandstone formations.

A formation with a Duck going around the formations - The type...

One of many Circus Wagons on display.

Human Canon on rail car.

Calliope Organ - Sounds great.

Steam train - 15 inches between rails.

Train on turntable.

Me on Zip Line - 5 different lines

Lost Canyon - Horse drawn wagon ride.


The Goal of this trip is to go to Galesburg, Illinois to visit friends then to Milwaukee for the National Model Railroad Association convention and then to the Winnebago Rally and back to Wichita for the family gathering by July 29. We started this trip on June 20, Father’s Day and headed for Forest City, Iowa, the birthplace of our motorhome. We arrived Sunday afternoon at Winnebago’s free, nice shady parking spots for about 16 RVs all supplied with electricity and WiFi. Monday morning we had an appointment to get a couple annoying things taken care of by the factory techs. There are lots of other RV repair places around but I feel more confident with the factory techs. Only problem is they want the RV at the front door by 6:50 am. I really appreciate that the tech that works on your unit comes out to the RV and talks over your concerns. Now, Carol, I, and the dog are without our home for the day so we take the Jeep and kill some time in this small town. By 2:45 they were through and tech again goes through everything they did and all I had to do was pay the bill because none of this was warranty work. The labor is $100 per hour plus parts. We stayed that night in their free parking spot and left Tuesday morning. That morning we drove the RV across the highway to the vacant rally grounds to use the dump station. By mid-July this place will be filled with about 3-4,000 RVs but this morning it looked lake a cemetery with a field full of electrical boxes standing like gravestones. We then drove across Iowa to Moscow, Iowa for another repair. This is the home of HWH Corporation, the maker of the leveling jacks and the slide-out room mechanisms. I have one leveling jack that retracts all the way up but the last inch. That keeps ringing a warning bell until the jack is all the way up, so I wanted that repaired. They worked ¾ of the day on that and then decided to replace the jack but only charged me for one and a half hours work. We left there about 3:00 pm and drove to an RV park just outside of Galesburg, Illinois. That evening we had dinner out with Charles and Lou Ann Lovejoy, our friends from Canyon Lake RV Park in Mission, Texas. They had wanted us to visit their town during their Railroad Days Celebration so we made it this year. Over the next three days we visited the BNSF train museum, visited with two other couples we knew from Mission, TX, and took a VIP tour of the train switching yard. This tour is only offered once during the day, so three of us guys were determined enough to stand in line, in the sun, for 45 minutes to get the tickets. It was well worth the wait because it was an excellent tour of the rail switching yard, the hump control tower and the diesel service shop. The Galesburg rail-switching yard is the second largest yard for the BNSF Railroad. The largest yard is the Argentine yard in Kansas City, Kansas. From the hump tower we were able to see the computerized operation of sorting rail cars to make up trains that are about to leave the yard. My kind of tour. On Saturday, Charles and I went to the Train Show at the Junior College. This is a huge show with sale tables manned by individuals or by hobby shop owners, all wanting to sell ANY type of model railroad stuff. We walked our legs off getting around all the tables and a few model train layouts. Sunday Carol and I just rested at our RV and I found a couple Geocaches.

Monday, we drove the RV to Springfield, IL, to visit the Lincoln Museum. It is a neat high tech museum with two theaters containing multimedia, hologram productions plus lots of other displays. We stayed at a city RV park which offered electricity and water and then a dump station for $15 a night.

Thursday, July 1, we drove to Wisconsin Dells. The city takes its name from the dells of the Wisconson river, a scenic glacer-formed gorge that features striking sandstone formations along the banks of the Wisconsin River. Together with nearby Lake Delton, the city forms an area known as "the Dells", a very popular tourist destination. This place reminds us of highway 76 in Branson, MO., with many water parks, go-kart tracks, Duck rides and about any other amusements you can think of. Carol and I did take the senic boat trips of the Upper Dells and the Lower Dells which are seperated by the dam. Both directions from the dam has some outstanding sandstone formations. One evening we went to the Water Ski & Stage Show which finished with dancing water fountains and laser show. We also took a horse-drawn wagon ride through the Lost Canyon with a couple sections so narrow the wagon just barly made it through the sandstone walls. I could not talk Carol into doing the Magic Show and the Canyon Zip Line Tour so I did those myself. Of couse what trip would be conplete without a train of some sort. There is a small 15 inch steam train which has about a mile and a half trip up and back and then a turn table at the end to turn the engine around. One day we drove about 10 miles south of the Dells to the town of Baraboo, which used to be the winter home of the Ringling Brothers Circus. There on the old circus grounds is the Circus World Museum, containing many artifacts and a large collection of old restored bueatiful circus wagons. Also included was a Tiger Show, a one-ring Circus Show and a Illusion/Magic Show. The Tiger Show was short and poor but the other two were very good, about an hour each. There was also a guided tour of the circus wagons which finished with the playing of the circus Calliope Organ mounted on a wagon. In a theater a movie was shown about the renowned animal trainer Guther Gable Williams. The only food offered on the grounds was circus food, Oh Boy!!! It was a full day with lots of walking between buildings but it was a very interesting day.

Enough for now and lots of pictures to display. The rest of the trip will continue on the next posting.



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