Aug 112011

Since we only had a short trip of 140 miles yesterday, we slept in a little, and when we got up, we puttered around checking e-mail and our favorite blogs before we started getting ready to hit the road.

We have stayed at Fisherman’s Landing, the city-owned marina and RV park in Muskegon several times, but they added some new 50 amp RV sites since last year, with a very nice view of Muskegon Lake. The sites are $5 a day extra, but it was worth it to have 50 amp service and the view. We really like this place, I only wish they could allow Passport America members to stay longer than two days at the discounted rate, because we’d be very happy to spend a couple of weeks there. But what the heck, any savings is appreciated, right?

Fishermans Landing view 2

We pulled out of the campground about 12:30 and traveled south on U.S. Highway 31, which started out as a nice divided four lane limited access highway, went down to a four lane road with lots of traffic lights as it passed through Grand Haven and Holland, and then became a divided four lane highway again.

I 119 Michigan

The scenery was beautiful, lots of gentle rolling hills, lakes and rivers, and farm fields. Even though I spent most of my life in the western half of the United States, many of those years in Arizona, I am finding that I like the greenery and abundant water of the Midwest and East more and more.

Southern Michigan  

For part of the route, U.S. 31 joined with Interstate 196 as it follows the Lake Michigan coastline, and then it broke off again, and took us into Indiana, where we got onto the Indiana Toll Road (Interstate 80/90). From there it was another 20 miles into Elkhart.

Five years ago, the State of Indiana leased the toll road to a foreign outfit called IRT Concession, and if the stretch of highway we drove on yesterday is any indication, I don’t think they have blown their budget on improvements, because it sure was a bouncy ride!

As I wrote in yesterday’s blog, every time we pull into Elkhart Campground, it feels like we are coming home. Owner Gita Patel was in front of the office when we arrived, and greeted us with big hugs. We spent a few minutes catching up on the latest news in our lives, I dropped off a stack of Gypsy Journals in the office, and then we pulled up in front of our regular site. Before we even got the Explorer unhooked from the tow bar, our friends Paul and Sally Wagner, and some of the other regulars, came by to make us welcome. It sure is good to be home! 🙂

We got parked and hooked up, and by then we were famished, so we headed to Mancinos, our favorite pizza place, for dinner. Chris, the friendly woman who works at the restaurant and whom we have gotten to know over the years, greeted us and we talked a little bit about our travels this summer, caught up on news of her family, and enjoyed a delicious meal.

Then, after a quick stop at the grocery store to pick up a few things, we came back home and settled in for an evening of television, blog writing, and internet surfing. I needed to be lazy while I could because starting today, I need to chain myself to my desk and get the new issue of the paper ready to send to the printer. 

Thought For The Day – We never really grow up, we just learn how to act in public.

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Nick Russell

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  2 Responses to “An Easy Trip To Elkhart”

  1. Nick,
    I grew up in the Mid-west but all of my adult life I’ve lived in the Southeast. I’ve travelled in several times across the West US and lived twice in California. With that said, I’ll support your statement that the more I’m East of the Mississippi River the more I appreciate the green pastures and blue skies. ….just my view. Sort of like the song says, ‘…the green, green grass of home.’

  2. I have spoken to two Passport America campground owners in Utah who have affirmed that they earn a good profit by allowing campers to stay at the discounted rates as long as they desire. Their campgrounds are often filled to capacity due to the attractive discount.

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