Thursday, June 16, 2011

Another Problem, Move to Homer

Another problem with our motorhome popped up yesterday. Dennis pointed it out to Don. The floor underneath our holding tanks is deteriorating, and isn’t providing support to the tanks. In this photo of the underside of the coach going across from one side to the other shows the pan that holds the sewer hose, then there’s a beam of the frame, then a bulge, then another beam and another bulge. There should be no bulges!


Also, we’ve known for some time that we need to replace two small windows: one in the bathroom and one in the bedroom over the chest of drawers. There’s moisture accumulating between the double panes.

And finally, the Diamond Shield coating on the front cap needs replacement. We had it examined when we were at the factory in October, and the tech noted it needed replacement. However, he said if any paint damage occurred during the removal we’d have to go to the paint bay for at least a day, wait for it to dry, then get the replacement of the Diamond Shield. We didn’t have enough time to get it done at that time.

All of this work should be covered under warranty, even though our coach is over 3 years old because they are known problems with Tiffin coaches and others have been covered outside the warranty period.. So it looks like we need to plan another trip to Red Bay, Alabama!

This morning we left Ninilchik and drove up the steep hill we had descended yesterday. Dennis was ahead of us and got on the CB to let us know a wide-load boat was being towed down the narrow road, so we might want to wait. I did so, and when it had cleared the path, I spotted another one coming down so I waited longer. When the path looked clear, I started up, hoping I didn’t encounter another big rig. A boat did come down as we were on our way up, but it wasn’t a wide load so we had no problem.

But, just as I reached the stop sign at the highway, an alarm sounded and the dash read “Low coolant level. Check engine.” I started to turn right to go south toward Homer and look for a place to pull over to figure out what to do. Don said “Turn Left” emphatically. So I turned left, wondering why I had thought south was to our right. If that wasn’t enough to get me rattled, we then encountered the air pressure alarm again. We knew there was a large parking lot at the American Legion, so I drove the 1 1/2 miles to it. Don checked the coolant level and it seemed normal. He performed an air brake test and that seemed normal. The coolant level warning was probably due to the steep hill.

Meanwhile, I got out the map and showed Don where Homer was in relation to where we were. He admitted that he was turned around and had made a mistake in telling me to turn left. But he said we needed to use the parking lot at the Legion to check out the problems, so that was the reason he told me to go that way. That’s his story and he’s sticking to it! We only had 3 more miles on our odometer than the others!

Our trip of 40 miles (43 for us <grin>) was filled with awesome views, but I was driving and didn’t get any shots. Here’s what we awoke to this morning at Deep Creek, in front of our windshield. Don took this photo with the eagle facing us.


Later, I was able to zoom in a little more, but the big guy had turned around.


Dennis was out with his ‘whale’ lens, so I’m sure he got some good shots. There were at least 25 eagles on the beach, with many more in the lagoon on the other side.


We stopped at a convenient dump/water fill station in Homer and discovered a cleverly decorated donation box. Notice the satellite dish on the ‘roof.’ We certainly didn’t mind putting $2 in to support this service from the city.


We parked at the city RV park on the spit for $15/night no hookups. Other parks are very pricey – one is $70! – and we’re well-equipped to boondock. After parking, Don and I drove back to town in search of lunch and a car wash. Lunch was at the Aloha Drive In.


What a cute place, but what a big disappointment! The macaroni salad just wasn’t up to par in either taste or texture. My kalua pig had lots more cabbage than pork, and Don could barely eat the chicken long rice. The rice noodles were gelatinous, and the dish was more like soup. But we had to give it a try to find out.


Homer sits on Kachemak Bay at the end of the Sterling Highway on the Kenai Peninsula. With the sun out, Homer glistened. It’s surrounded by wilderness and ocean. The Homer Spit is thought to be the remains of an ancient glacial moraine. Winter storms constantly threaten to separate it from the mainland, but rock walls and the perseverance of residents keep it intact. This picture (of a picture on the wall of the restaurant) shows the 4.5 mile long spit, looking south. We are parked almost at the far end.


The tides here run about 20 feet. After we arrived and set up, this was the view of the ship in front of us. The tide had already started to come in, because the bow was above dry land earlier and even the anchor, far out in front of the ship, was almost visible.


Here’s the other side of the same boat a few hours later. It didn’t move.


After dinner, the tide started going out again, and a truck easily drove on the beach to the ramp that had been under water a short time before.


We had happy hour with the 10 of us (Gary and Mary are still in Anchorage enjoying their daughter’s visit).


Then dinner was a potluck, with Don’s famous pork fried rice setting the theme. We also had BBQ chicken, sweet & sour chicken and vegetables, grilled shrimp, salad and oatmeal cookies. Do we know how to eat or what?



Tomorrow 4 of the guys are going out early on a fishing boat for a 1/2 day excursion. We girls are going to get tickets for the ferry to Seldovia on Saturday, then we might work on some crafts. Seldovia is off the road system, accessible only by boat or air, and should be an interesting place to visit.

Here are a few more sights and scenes from Homer.









  1. I'm loving your blog. I'm glad Don's overdose turned out OK. The next time we go to Alaska it will definatley not be on a Cruise ship!

    Your pictures are great.


  2. Great photos today, Sharon, it is really beautiful there. In 1974 Mo camped for free at the end of the spit, but I suppose those days are gone forever. Glad your motorhome wasn't broken. Good to know about the possibility of the coolant light going off on steep hills.

  3. Great pics! The ones of the Eagle are awesome!

    Glad to hear the coolant thing was just a false alarm - who needs that!

    Sure seems to be a lot of bloggers heading to Red Bay Alabama a lot.


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