August 17, I rented an RV and wanted to get started on our big adventure. Realizing we were not packed and the night I would probably have, we waited for the next day.
August 18: We left for Sheridan around 9 am. We traveled up through Jackson and had lunch there. During the first few hours of the trip, Abby would keep reminding Owen that we were going the opposite way from the doctors.
Traffic came to a stand still just before Moran Jct, I figured it was a wreck until the park ranger told us there was a bear. So Gayle and the kids played tourists and got out to take a picture. Park rangers have to be so patient, they were telling the crowd that the bear had run off a pack of wolves to eat this dead elk. One guy pipes up and asks what runs off bears, confused the ranger told him another bear. Gayle and I laughed for the next couple of hours on how I would have responded to the curious little mans question. I more than less would have calmly said " my dense little friend, beings a bear is almost at the top of the food chain, a rifle would probably run that bear off."
It was nice that I had already been to Yellowstone, so I could stay in the rv and tend Owen. We got Owen out at really big stops but most of the time it was Gayle and the kids. We got the kids some cameras so that they could take their own pictures. You would have thought that film was going to expire, poor Abby would take pictures while she was walking. I guess that was the fun in having them. We stayed the night in the park on the East side to give us a head start to Cody.
August 19: We started the morning checking out the falls in Yellowstone and then headed to Cody. We stopped in Cody for lunch and some quick shopping. This picture is forever in my mind called anxiety pass, because that is what it gave me. We went through Lovell and there was a flashing sign saying steep grades ahead, super trucker me thought I have seen all kinds of steep grades. Let me tell you this is the most extreme grade road I have ever been on! We stopped twice to let the motor home cool down and calm my nerves. We pulled the pass doing a whopping 15 miles an hour.
At the top of anxiety pass we saw this sign. Gayle looked over at me and said " that is the reason we haven't passed any campers." There was a reason they had three runaway truck ramps and two brake cooling pull offs. The smart rv'ers went down to Greybull and took the easy pass over the hill. We got down off the beautiful bighorn mountains and went into Sheridan. Having a camper night the night before we got a room in the motel where our calves were selling the next day.
August 20: Our calves sold and I am still trying to figure out if it was the trip or the price that our calves sold for, that was causing my nausea. Probably the price, so we headed to Gillette where mom and dad had been staying. Their motel had a water park built in it so we stayed the night with them and went swimming.
We put Owen on some blankets and on a table next to the pools. He was content as a bug.
Bentley and Abby on the lazy river. They tried to wear out the slides before we left.
August 21: We woke up to an alarm on Owens concentrator. It was the first machine malfunction of the trip. I had packed some tanks but only enough to get us home, not go on with our adventure. We called around to some of the home medical supply places and lincare offered to sell us some tanks but we had to have a prescription. We called our Dr in Evanston and the first thing she did when she got to her office was call lincare. I think Depalma was sent to Evanston for a reason and we are extremely grateful for her. We had issues with lincare trying to get Owen home, surprisingly they helped us out and brought us more tanks.
Devils tower was simply amazing. I was going to skip this stop because it was off the beaten path, but I am glad I didn't. That huge pillar of rock is like I said, amazing.
Off to South Dakota we went. Wondered why all the bikers go to Sturgis, stopped in Keystone and finally made it to the presidents. That is the first time for all of us and it was amazing!
Crazy horse monument is ten miles down the road so we stopped there. I turned at the light figuring on getting a picture and not paying to get in. Well someone was thinking that same thing because there is a median in the road leading up to the pay booths. Dukes of hazard was running through my mind until the nice man at the booth let us go in for nothing. So that saved the motorhome from jumping the mound and flowers in the middle of the road.
We stayed that night in Custer, SD.
August 22: We got up and headed for home. We made a few stops in Wyoming and finally pulled into our yard at 9 pm.
Other than the concentrator, Owen and his machinery worked flawlessly. He would get upset when we stopped, he liked looking out and the vibration of the road. We saw some really pretty country; the kids saw a lot of animals in the park; I know for a fact that an RV can make it up the pass between Lovell and Sheridan; and I could move tomorrow to the black hills, some thing about rolling hills and junipers that beckons my soul.