camping, Off the beaten trail, Scenes From the Dashboard Series, travel

Scenes from the Dashboard Series: The Road FROM Vermont!

Hi All!

Ahh!  Now the fun of the trip coming home.  We decided to travel the northern route by way of Canada!  I thought it would make for a great adventure and shock some of my nerves to see how easy (or hard) it would be to cross the border with our RV!

Garmin took us on a route that skirted the border along the St. Lawrence seaway.  We could see Canada at many points along our 100 mile journey before the crossing.  I snapped lots of pictures of the countryside…old barns, very rural…DSCF0331

As we approached the checkpoint we decided to fill up with gas and in the parking lot of the gas station I spied this dog in the driver seat!  Bad picture here…DSCF0350

…but if you zoom in you can see him just as cool as a cucumber taking over the wheel waiting for his owner!

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I drove through the border crossing and prior to entry we were stopped by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol.  They were looking for a fugitive on the run (Sweat) and had narrowed his location close to the Canadian border.  They were checking every vehicle and they checked every hatch of our truck and our trailer.  We had to stay in the vehicle while they did this.  I kept thinking if I’d put my undies away in the laundry basket!  Ha!

Then we went over the bridge and waited at the Canadian checkpoint.  I wondered if they would do the same thing.  I declared our liquor and worked through the 10 questions I was asked about weapons and illegal drugs.  Nope, Nope, Nope and nope, nope, nope….ad hominum 10 plus times!  I thought it interesting how many ways to ask if we had a weapon.  I was about ready to share I had a shovel and saw if I needed to use it but thought better to stay silent.

We then were welcomed to Canada!!!DSCF0364

We had a relatively short trip (another 3 hours) to our destination for the evening, Pres’quile Provincial Park in Brighton, ON!  I chose this location because of the bird sanctuary, not to mention they had a site open on the water!

Hello Lake Ontario!!!  This marked it official for Jim and I that we’d now seen all of the Great Lakes!  Our site was amazing, just wished we’d had more time to spend there and explore all that the park had to offer!DSCF2417

It did rain so we had to deal with wet grass and tables and such but the skies cleared up to a haze for dinner and we sat out by the fire and watched the shorebirds… DSCF2422

The obligatory timer-selfie was taken to document our existence… DSCF0361

…and in the morning I awoke to see a group of white birds out the dinette window!  What could those be?DSCF0364

SWANS!!!  How cool is this?  14 swans were swimming by just leisurely going about their morning routine!  I burst into song… “Seven Swans a Swimming…” then through in an added break “and their mates!”

Just a very neat sight to see.

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We gathered our things together and checked Garmin to see how far it would be to get home.  Ooh.  It was going to be 10 hours of driving time.  Could we do it?

We left it open ended.  I knew it would be a long day of travel but also knew once we crossed into Michigan we would start seeing familiar sights and know we were close to home.

Driving near Toronto…getting closer.  How far was the border?DSCF0379

Garmin routed us to the Sarnia crossing.  We waited and waited.  Only one lane was used for RV’s…and I can’t even tell you what I thought of the cars that kept rushing the lanes and budging their way into our lane!!!  In Chicago people get shot for some of those moves.  I kept calm and kept checking my phone to see if I was back on-line and waited.  I figured we get there eventually…

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At the checkpoint we were inspected through and through and the border agent quizzed me on the Who, What and Where’s but his last question was just loopy!  “Is this trailer light?”  Huh???  My sarcastic self wanted to say “yeah, it says lite right on the cap!”…but I calmly proclaim “…why yes, it weighs about 4,000 pounds!”  …I’m sure he was checking our weight ratings as he looked over the trailer and hitch and our truck.  Uggh.  Then with a smile he handed back our passports and said “Welcome Back!”.

Lovely!  Now onto home!

This first sign to say Chicago!!!  Just one more fill-up to go and we’ll be home!20150629_203347

We arrived late but amazingly I found the night driving to be okay.  I could tell I’d need to get different glasses to cut the glare from the lights but the traffic was smooth sailing!  Well, except for the semis that barrel through this 80-94 corridor!!  No wonder so many accidents occur on that route…sheesh!

Well.  We are home now and ready for this 4th of July weekend with festivals, grill-outs and celebrations!

Next up…the Vermont Quilt Festival!

~Cathy

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