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We’re in Kentucky just in time for Spring! I really enjoy our days in Kentucky; we usually seem to come through here in spring or fall. We’re in a Corps of Engineers campground at the northern end of the Land Between the Lakes, and yesterday we drove the trace road the length of the national recreation area. It was a beautiful drive. The white dogwoods and the redbud trees are in full bloom, lacy white and pink all along the roadway. Up here in Grand Rivers the tulips and violets are blooming and the weather is almost summer-hot.
Herbivores, campgrounds good and soso, Arkansas and into Kentucky )
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J and P and I sat down and had a family discussion about where to go next, and we decided to go ahead and make the long trip from Kentucky to the southern tip of Texas, so that P could see a friend of his who had moved away after high school. It would let us tour Texas, too, but we’d be driving every few days in order to make it down there and back again for Thanksgiving in PA.

nice campgrounds and nasty mishaps on the way to Texas )
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First full week of October, part 2:

Thursday morning the alarm went off far too early, in order for us to be out the door in time to drive to Buffalo Trace Distillery for our last distillery tour (supposedly starting at 10 am) a behind the scenes tour for which MIL had made reservations two weeks ago.  We made it by moments, only to find that the tour was actually scheduled for 10:30 am… on the following day.  Making the best of a somewhat cranky situation, we went ahead with the regular tour which did start at 10 am, and we enjoyed it very much.  The whole day was like that. 


Buffalo Trace and the WEG two days running... )


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First full week of October, part I:

After the restful week with the family, we headed back to Kentucky. We broke our trip with a pleasant few days in Smithland, northeast of Paducah. Birdsville RV campground was as nice as ever. We grilled steaks and roasted marshmallows on a campfire on the banks of the Ohio River, watching the barges steam by, and made time to drive into Paducah and see the quilt museum. I love going there; the exhibits are different each time but always interesting. This time, one of the wings was devoted to an exhibit of quilts celebrating horses, in honor of the World Equestrian Games going on in Lexington, KY. Which was, in fact, our next stop.

Of trucks and horses )
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While we were in central Kentucky sampling the local spirits, we took a day to go to Louisville and enjoy what our tour guide at the track touted as the second of Kentucky’s three vices: bourbon, horse racing, and tobacco. Louisville is the home of Churchill Downs, the famous racetrack which runs the Kentucky Derby every year in early May, and the race grounds also feature the Kentucky Derby Museum. The museum was completely renovated after a flood in 2009, and it is very cool. On the lower level, it’s all about the Derby: the history of the racetrack and the race, exhibits talking about the mechanics of racing and how tracks work, plus video and still photos of all the Derby races for which those items exist. It was interesting to tour a recently installed museum; there were a lot more interactive exhibits than I am used to, including a touch screen computer for showing the aforementioned videos on a huge screen, with handy seating. There were even some life-sized fiberglass horses you could “ride to victory” using a computer game style setup.

Churchill Downs and our day in Louisville )
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After the Pow-wow, J and P and my MIL moved the fifth wheel to mid-Kentucky for the next stage of the trip. I drove up from the Nashville airport to meet them at the new campground, Taylorsville Lake State Park, in Mt Eden, KY. This was a beautiful park and a far cry from the previous state park in Dawson Springs. The sites were large and level; everything was very nice and spacious, so the crew had no trouble getting the rig parked without me. We stayed at Taylorsville Lake for just shy of a week and never saw a park employee. There must have been one there at some point, because we came back from touring one day to find a parking pass slipped under the windshield wiper of the truck, but we never saw them. I suspect gnomes.

We’d planned to stay closer to Louisville, KY but this was the closest campground that still had openings. I couldn’t figure out why, until we learned that the annual Kentucky Bourbon Festival was being held that weekend in Bardstown, KY, which bills itself as the Bourbon Capital of the World. The festival itself was fun and family friendly, with an antique car show, kiddy rides, crafters and so forth. All of the major distilleries had booths there, most set up to look like their distilleries, selling toys and souvenirs. The spirits were sold in a separate area which was admission with ID only, which I thought a clever way to keep out underage drinkers. Since one of our party was under 21 we didn’t indulge there.

The distillery tours were another matter or, More than you ever wanted to know about Bourbon )
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Our travels resumed at the beginning of September with a long trip to southwestern Kentucky. We are travelling with my MIL and P, a young cousin of mine.
The trip in early September )
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We’re almost all packed up and put away and ready for our 7 (ugh!) am appointment with the NuWa service center tomorrow.  The alarm is set for 5 (eek!) am so we can button up the rig and dump the tanks before driving over to the factory for some minor warrantee work.  We’ve been enjoying Chanute, Kansas and their municipal campground.  Rather than have fifth wheels parked in the local Wal-Mart awaiting factory service, Chanute built a nice little campground.  Water and electric for $10 a day, and the first two nights are free.  It’s ideal, especially as it backs onto a city park with a small lake.

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We are on the banks of the Ohio River, in a very nice campground north of Paducah, KY.  Upon learning that there were sites on the water I’d asked for one when I made our reservations.  After we got backed in, J and I turned our living room chairs around so that we could look out the large rear window at the river. And here we are, watching the squall line come on.



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April 2017



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