|Sun, 25 Sep: We didn't rush to get underway today as we didn't have that far to drive and we wanted to give the Baileys time to get their home and RV pad ready for visitors. They returned home from their six week RV trek yesterday and needed time to unload their RV and get settled.
We pulled out of the St. George Elks Lodge at ten and upon entering I 15 immediately ran into road construction. Fortunately, it wasn't that long, just aggravating as the lanes were quite narrow. In four miles the construction was over and we entered Arizona for, what we consider, one of the most gorgeous Interstate runs there is. Specifically, within a few miles of entering Arizona I 15 enters the Virgin River Gorge, which is just striking. Only problem, there are no turnouts for good picture taking so all Sandi's shots were through the windows while Bob tried to keep Carpe's speed down (very steep grades).
In just twenty-six miles we were out of the Gorge and back on the flats. As soon as it got leveled out we crossed into Nevada. After an uneventful drive we arrived in Las Vegas around 1300. We stopped at a Camping World in Henderson to pick up some needed parts and also had lunch. Forty-five minutes later we were again underway and drove the remaining sixty some miles to Laughlin and the Baileys. We arrived about 1530 (all times are Mountain Daylight as we entered the Pacific timezone at the Nevada line).
Our total trip distance was 221 miles and we averaged 9.1 MPG. Our route included I 15, I 515, US 95, and NV 163. Carpe behaved herself well and easily mastered the steep grades associated with this route. A "fun" aspect of this route is that US 95 travels through the town of Searchlight, Nevada. Searchlight has two claims to infamy: the first is that it is the birthplace of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and the second is that it is a notorious speed trap. From 75 MPH to 45, 35, and then 25. "Barney Fife" sits alongside the main drag with his radar gun. Sandi drive Carpe through at 10 MPH (a wonder she didn't get "busted" for blocking traffic.)
The Baileys, as is their style, made us feel right at home. Despite just arriving home yesterday, they made their guest RV pad available for our use. We got settled in and soon it was Happy Hour. Because we started the day in another time zone we started libations early... That's the "rules", right?
Ray grilled steaks on the grill and Cathie put together a dynamite salad. We sat around the table enjoying one another's company as if we hadn't just spent the past four weeks traveling together. We do get along with them so well—they are truly special friends!
Tue, 27 Sep: Our time here in Laughlin has been quite productive. First thing Monday Sandi drove across the river to Bullhead City (Arizona) to have her monthly blood test drawn. After breakfast we started going through the coach opening and inspecting the contents of every closet, cabinet, and storage area. Laughlin is where our storage unit is located, and one of the primary reasons for this visit was to clear out stuff we didn't need or want.
After our first trip to the storage unit we picked up our mail at the Laughlin Post Office and then lunched at In-N-Out Burger. It has been sixteen months since our last In-N-Out "fix" and we were overdue. We didn't have their to-die-for fries but Boy, did we ever enjoy our burgers!
We spent the afternoon going through more compartments and filling the banker boxes we bought at Sam's Club. At five it was happy hour again and following that we went to the "Mississippi Belle" Casino for dinner. Their brew pub, which was very good before it changed hands last spring, changed hands again and is again very good.
This morning while it was (relatively) cool we went through the outside "basement" compartments and took six banker boxes of stuff to the shed. Back at the coach this afternoon we finished the inside compartments, filling an additional bankers box. As we write this (about 1545) the outside temperature is a "balmy" 101° F. A bit too "toasty" for much outside work.
Tomorrow morning we'll go through the other side "basement" compartments and that should do it. Hopefully we'll have lightened Carpe's burden by several hundred pounds.