Monday, January 10, 2011


After a long and pretty much uneventful drive, Heidi and I made it back to Port Angeles on Thursday.  We already miss our friends in Quartzsite and those that we had looked forward to meeting, but realize even more now that this was the right move.  I already feel much better. 

Now that we are back and somewhat recovered from the drive, our focus is returning to our projects and plans for the future. Heidi has been busy working on "Charlie", the van she had when we met. Since her ultimate "Vanstead" needs to be based on a diesel powered van, Charlie is only being utilized as an experimental lab of sorts. It is fun for me to watch her clever mind work and her ideas come to life!

I always have a large list of ideas and projects which I will be blogging about as they progress. This year though, I am going to share a bit more of my hobbies with you all as well.

I seem to have fly fishing on the brain lately. The Olympic Peninsula is full of beautiful rivers & streams and this year I plan to spend a lot more time on them pursuing those tasty salmon and trout! Though not nearly as plentiful as the fish, there is a little gold in a few of those creeks as well and I just wouldn't feel right about leaving it out there! 

This is the result from a previous prospecting adventure. Quite a few more hours were involved in recovering what you see than I care to admit, but my motive is fun rather than profit so I can live with it!

It is time for me to get back in shape! My trusty mountain bike is going to get a bunch of miles put on it soon (Not from hanging on Taj's rack). I have some ideas on how to build in some very effective exercise equipment into Taj as well and look forward to blogging about it!

Speaking of Taj, there are a ton of other projects planned for her. A very custom solar panel installation is just one of the things I have in store.  Lots of fun is coming! 

Next post: What we learned this year, which is behind many of the projects we now have planned.


  1. Keep the posts coming. Although I know we are not future vandwelers, I find what you are doing very informative and some may be very applicable to a larger scale RV someday.

    Never stop learning new things.

  2. Glad you 2 made it back and that it was the right move. Love the beach photo! - it's now my wallpaper.

    So, what are your plans for future traveling if you don't mind divulging?

  3. Mike, I am so glad you two made it up there ok. Tony and I miss both of you a lot. Bob and I and a couple of other vandwellers are parked at the RTR site now. Wish you were here with us but am soooo glad you are feeling better. Cheri and Tony the Tiger.

  4. enjoy the pacific northwest! is a beautiful area!!

  5. Oh so good to hear from you again! You are what I want to be when I am grown......


  6. Hey,
    I hooked up Technomadia with some Tension Training tubes for their trailer. Would love to help you out with any ideas you may have for exercise stuff on your van. Look up my stuff there!

  7. Hi younguns.....glad to know you are feeling better now you are back in PA....say hi to "the leatherneck" Bill for me. Also to gg when you see him.

    I'll miss you in Q but know you are doing well and Heidi can get back to her vansteading efforts.
    Hugs and Love,

  8. Happy to hear you had a safe trip and are feeling better.

  9. Thanks Merikay! We really hope to put out some useful info for everyone, van or not so your comments are great to read!

    Kim, Thanks! That beach picture is from up by Forks Wa. It is Rialto beach and is one of our favorite places here. Travel plans for the future are pretty flexible. We plan to stay in the PNW area for the summer, sharing the really great places we love with everyone here. We will probably go to Utah in the fall then back to Quartzsite or maybe Lake Havasu area for the winter. As always, nothing written in stone :)

    Cheri, Heidi and I miss you and Tony tons as well! We really hope you have a great time at the RTR and stay safe and warm! Tell everyone we said "Hi" and pet all the pups for us!

    Sue and Doug, Thanks! We agree completely!

    Deb, LOL! You are funny! We aren't grown up yet either, never plan to!

    Matt, Thanks! The training tubes are exactly what I was planning on. I will go check out the website and maybe bug you a bit about more ideas! I will have to go look at Technomadia and see if they show what you setup with them.

    Hey Bri, We sure miss you! I will pass your message on to the "leatherneck", gg too :) Heidi was out having fun with vansteading the first day back! She has been really busy already, should be a fun summer!

    Thanks Anne! Hope you are both happy and well also!


  10. We're glad that you made it back safely. Looking forward to reading about those upcoming RV projects sometime soon.

  11. Another friend here who is glad you are home in the PNW again. I want to get way out west some time soon and see you all. I'm looking forward to all your innovations, especially the exercise equipment and solar installation! And Heidi's vanstead creations. I'd like to make something portable that mimics a rowing machine. You need a sliding seat and something to push against with the feet, and stretch bands or something similar for resistance.

  12. So glad you are feeling better, Mike. Sounds like you have a lot of fun times planned. I wanna go fly fishing when I come...can we? can we? can we?

  13. Hey, maybe Heidi can raise her chickens in Charlie instead :-)

  14. Ourtakeonfreedom, Thanks! We are glad to be back! Lots of mods to do and posts to write this year!

    Thanks Judith! I hope you can come visit us out here or on the road sometime too! The rowing machine would be easy to simulate I think pretty much as you described. I will probably start those mods in Feb.

    Kriseeee! Thanks! I am feeling so much better now! Yes we can go fly fishing and we will have lots of fun! We can catch some nice salmon and grill it :)

    SSSSSHHHHH Mar! I was hoping she would forget about the chickens! LOL!