Tuesday, September 09, 2014



I don't know where my Monday morning energy went but by the time I woke up Tuesday morning it had definitely got up & went without me.  Walked around outside for a bit waiting for an inspiration.  None came.  Temperatures had come up overnight & it was muggy.  Thought of going back to bed but haven't done that since my teen-age years.  No point in starting that up again.  Didn't like doing that then & would dislike doing that even more now so no option there.  Kelly headed off to Goderich for some blood tests so Pheebs & I headed over to Clinton to pick up a coffee & carrot muffin on our way to the HULLETT MARSH.

My mood seemed to match the cloudy overcast skies.  Luckily we had a cooling breeze or I wouldn't even have considered getting out of the Jeep.  Had noticed on the Hullett-Marsh website a few weeks they had opened up a new trail this summer so we stopped to check it out.  Called the 'Orange Trail' it was actually an old trail I remembered from about 25 years ago.  It has been refurbished, the areas trees have grown & I remembered driving a motorcycle in there one summer’s day parking on a high point of ground & just sitting there in the grass for a long time gazing out across the marshlands. 



Thanks to a thick overnight cloud cover the trails long grass had been sheltered from a soaking wet heavy dew.  I think purple has to be one of my favorite colors because it always takes me back to my early childhood school days.  Walking along this morning surrounded by Purple Asters, Chicory, Canada Thistle & Goldenrod it was the multitude of unseen Crickets that pulled me out of the doldrums.  Blue Jays in the air & a host of busy bees buzzing about in fields of waving Goldenrod lifted my mood putting me back on a sunshine footing.  I like pausing by clumps of Asters & remembering those old school days, those old golden rule days.  I can still remember many of the faces & names of my classmates.  My favorite day was always in June when our teacher would take the whole class on a forest walk near the school.  Those days were my favs…………………….. 


By the time Pheebs & I traveled ourselves back home the morning's cloud cover began breaking up sporadically bathing us in patterns of uplifting sun splashes.  Sunshine is one mighty magic elixir for many of us. 

DSC_0016-003 DSC_0017-003

DSC_0007-005 DSC_0012-006
DSC_0010-007And here is something of interest to all RV Boondockers & I must say this is very disconcerting news about our beloved free BLM lands………………

by Jim Koca, Advocacy Director

As some Escapees are aware, a bill has been introduced in the United States Congress, HB 5204, entitled The Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Modernization Act of 2014, which will allow fees to be collected for most of the "public land" that is controlled by the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management. If the bill passes, it would allow the Federal Government to charge fees for any activity on land that we presently have access to for free. Fees could include a permit fee, day use fee, or a special use fee. There is the possibility that the bill could be attached to an appropriation bill, which would allow the bill to pass without public comment or debate.
It is time now to get involved and contact your congressman and senators where you have your domicile and let them know that HB 5204 should be defeated. In the past, public lands have been turned over to concessionaires that allowed them to charge fees or to refuse to give discounts for entering the federal lands. This bill may not pass, but don't take a chance and let the other members contact their congressman or senators. It only takes a few minutes to let the representatives that we elected know how we feel.
To find your congressman, you can go to http://www.house.gov, and for senators, you can go to http://www.senate.gov.
If you would like to review the bill yourself:


GROANER'S CORNER:(( A man walks into a shoe store and tries on a pair of shoes.  "How do they feel?" asks the sales clerk.  "Well ...they feel a bit tight," replies the man.  The assistant promptly bends down and has a look at the shoes and the mans feet. "Try pulling the tongue out," offers the clerk.  Theyth sthill feelth a bith tighth," he replied.


Another guy walks into a shoe store and asks for a pair of shoes, size 8.  The obviously well trained salesman says, "But sir, you take an 11 or eleven-and-a-half."  "Just bring me a size eight!" the man replies.  The sales guy brings them and the man stuffs his feet into them and stands up in obvious pain. He turns to the salesman and says, "I've lost my house because of foreclosure, I live with my mother-in-law, my daughter ran off with my best friend, and my business has filed Chapter 7. The only pleasure I have left in life is to come home at night and take my shoes off."


  1. More regulations courtesy of the US Government...This country is being strangled by regulations, taxes and rules.."We are from the US Government and we are here to help"..be afraid, be VERY afraid. Don't get me started~

  2. I thought that I read someplace this morning that the bill has passed. If all areas were like those around Quartzsite, in the LTVA areas where one pays $20.00/2 weeks with a dump station, drinking water and dumpsters, I don't think I would object.

  3. I figured it was only a mater of time before the government finally stepped in.

  4. I'm going to repost this, I'm sure you won't mind, we meed all the people we can get to stop this bill.
    Thanks AL

  5. I don't think it is unreasonable if the fees are used to improve or maintain the land. With more and more baby boomers and Canadians )) using the land a patrol for protection may be a benifit.

    Personally I would rather camp near a Canadian than a rowdy youngen.

    Adding water and dump stations here and there would be good.

  6. First, I do NOT support the passage of the Bill. It is just another revenue enhancement (tax) because the Federal government is broke and they are going to tax anything and everything they can.

    Second, Escapees says "...which will allow fees to be collected for most of the "public land" that is controlled by the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management". If you read the Bill, it does NOT allow for collection of a fee for MOST of the public land in my opinion. It allows for the collection of fees on SOME of the public lands that have been free.

    The free disbursed camping (boondocking) sites on BLM land that Al has enjoyed in the past do not appear to me to fall within the scope of the Bill and will remain free - for now. There will come the day when there is NO access to ANY Federal land without paying a fee; as is now collected at National Parks.

  7. After reading the title I was actually relieved to see it was just a fee being considered, and not the closure of the areas for dispersed camping. Like others, I'm not opposed to a reasonable fee. Love the flower photos - the colors are so beautiful!

  8. I wouldn't be against paying a fee if the money went to the federal government, who must maintain the land, after all. What I would object to is concessionaires getting their hands into the pot, regulating access, etc. Some concessionaires do a fine job (for a good sum of money) while others, such as at Crater Lake, decide which sites in the campground are available to you, and a solo camper can just make the best of it! I won't even think about what they could do to disbursed camping on as of now free land.

  9. There's a thread (probably several) about this on RV.net in the Boondocking Forum. It's not what it looks like and doesn't seem to have much support.

    BTW, how many BLM Rangers have you ever seen in the wild? They have very few and they tend to hang out at the visitor centers. ;)


  10. I live adjacent to the National Forest here in Oregon, and for several years now there have been "fee areas" where you cannot park to go for a simple walk without paying the parking fee. Especially during the winter, you have to have a permit to park. Dispersed camping for anything other than a tent is pretty much out of the question any more, at least in our forest. The roads can't handle anything bigger than a jeep and need high clearance.

  11. Just an aside here, as a previous employee of the USDA (not the forest service, but soil survey) I know how incredibly reduced the budgets have been in the last decade for public lands. It is a joke. Congress takes away all the money to run our public lands and keep us safe while at the same time subsidizing very wealthy farmers. All USDA money, taxpayer money. It doesn't go to employees or bureaucrats, it goes to subsidize big money crops that add stuff like corn syrup to processed food. The forest service is trying to operate on a tiny amount of what they once had and the only way to keep any of our public lands available to us is to be willing to pay fees. I, for one, don't really want my public lands completely run over by users who don't have the kinds of ethics that most of us have. Anarchy doesn't work in the forest any more than it works in the cities. No one wants to pay taxes to keep our parks and wildlands safe and useable, so you might as well get used to paying fees if you want any wildlands left that are not sold out to oil developers or big corporations that send their profits to other countries. I don't think those big corporations that are trying to buy up public lands are going to let you boondock anywhere for free. So pay the fee and be glad you have a chance to park somewhere that your slide doesn't butt up against the next rig. UhOh....you got me up on my soapbox, Al. All heck will probably break loose.