Nick Russell

It’s Alive!

 Posted by at 1:11 am  Nick's Blog
Jan 272015
 

We loved our week with my son and his wife in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, but all too soon it was time to say goodbye and hit the road. Travis and Geli came over about 9 a.m. yesterday to see us off, and after a lot of hugs and a few tears shed, we left the Elks lodge just after 10 and got on Interstate 20 westbound.

It was another cold, dreary day until we hit the Mississippi state line, and almost immediately the sky turned blue with just a few puffy white clouds. What a nice welcome!

Mississippi sign small

Except for stopping for fuel at the Pilot in Pearl, and again a couple of hours later for a quick pit stop, we motored right along and before we knew it we were in Vicksburg and approaching the Mississippi River. I didn’t even snivel going over the bridge!

A railroad bridge parallels the highway crossing and there was a long train stopped on top of it. At least we kept moving!

We entered Louisiana on the other side of the river and 80 miles later we arrived at our destination for the night, Pavilion RV Park in West Monroe. We had covered 310 miles, a good day on the road. Located just off Interstate 20, Pavilion RV Park is typical of many mom and pop Passport America RV parks. Nothing fancy, but friendly, clean and comfortable. $20 got us a pull-through 50 amp full hookup RV site.

After we were parked and hooked up and had a chance to relax a bit, we realized that we were hungry and drove a mile or so down the road to a little place called Sam’s Southern Eatery & Seafood. We arrived at 5:15 and were the only customers, not a good sign. But our waitress was friendly and quickly took our order, and by the time our food came the place was filling up. If you like fried seafood, this place is well worth checking out. I had the butterflied shrimp and they were big, tender and delicious. The red beans and rice were also very good. Terry had the shrimp, oyster and fish combo and I sampled one of the oysters and a small piece of fish and they too were very good.

West Monroe is the home of Duck Dynasty, and the gift shop at their warehouse is a popular tourist attraction, but I don’t think we’ll stop since we need to be in Livingston, Texas this afternoon. Hopefully it will be another easy traveling day.

Usually when I submit a new book to Amazon for their Kindle bookstore it takes about twelve hours, but last night I uploaded my new book Big Lake Burning, and within two hours it was live and available for sale. That’s a fast turnaround!

Big Lake Burning FINAL small

This is the sixth book in the Big Lake series and I have at least four more to go, so we’ll be hearing more from Sheriff Weber, FBI agent Larry Parks, bumbling deputy Archer Wingate and the rest of the crew who inhabit my little mountain town. One reviewer referred to the series as “Mayberry Meets Twin Peaks." I like that description! I hope you enjoy it, and please tell your friends. I hope to have the book on Barnes & Noble within a few days.

Thought For The Day – I do not snore. I dream I’m a motorcycle.

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

In The Wind

 Posted by at 12:02 am  Nick's Blog
Jan 262015
 

Yesterday was clear and windy here in Tuscaloosa, and my son Travis was eager to get out to the park and try out my Prism Snapshot 1.9 speed foil kite. And I was eager to have him fly it.

The wind was perfect for flying the Snapshot, with gusts to about 20 miles per hour. This kite will give you a real workout, and Travis found that out pretty quick. It will really jerk you around, and since he weighs less than half of what his old man does, there was a question about who was controlling who a few times. But he hung in there and before too long he was flying it like a pro and had a grin a mile wide.

Travis flying kite

By the time we called it a day, we were both tired and had sore arms and shoulders. And I bet this morning Travis is really feeling it. Who needs a membership in a gym? All it takes is a kite and some wind.

When we left the park Travis and I went back to his house, while Miss Terry and Geli went to Mr. Chen’s, a great Chinese restaurant that also has an Asian market full of all kinds of goodies Terry wanted to check out. They did some browsing and brought dinner home. I’d rate Mr. Chen’s up there with the best Chinese restaurants we’ve found in the country.

We have had a wonderful week visiting with Travis and Geli, but it’s time to get on down the road. For me, one of the hardest parts of the fulltime RV lifestyle is saying goodbye to the people we love. We wish we could stay with them forever but they are scattered all over the country, so the best we can do is stop and spend time with them whenever we can before it’s time to move on.

Today we’re aiming for West Monroe, Louisiana, about 300 miles west on Interstate 20. A quick overnight stop there, and Tuesday afternoon we’ll be in Livingston, Texas. We’ll stay on Charles and Chris Yust’s lot there for a night, maybe two, and by the end of the week we’ll be at the Colorado River Thousand Trails preserve in Columbus, Texas. We’ll stay there a week or so while I get the next issue of the Gypsy Journal ready to go to the printer, and hook up with our pals Greg and Jan White while we’re there. With any luck I’ll have something for Greg to fix by then.

Congratulations to Dale Lack, winner of our drawing of an audiobook of Big Lake Blizzard, the fourth book in my Big Lake mystery series. Stay tuned, a new contest starts soon.

I just finished reading a book by William Wright called Jailhouse Doc: A Doctor in the County Jail. It’s an interesting look at life inside a modern day jail from the perspective of somebody who interacted with staff and inmates both, as well as the politics of corporate healthcare in the corrections field. Check it out, it’s a good read.

Thought For The Day – Some people are just beautifully wrapped boxes of chaos.

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

The Happy Hooker

 Posted by at 12:25 am  Nick's Blog
Jan 252015
 

It rained much of Friday night but by yesterday the storm had moved out and we awoke to blue sky. It was chilly, with the high in the low 50s, but otherwise a nice day. A good day for flying.

About noon we went to Travis and Geli’s house, because now that I have my son hooked on flying remote control drones, I wanted to introduce him to kite flying. Geli is an in-home hospice care nurse and she is on call this weekend and she had been called out in the morning, but she arrived back home soon after we got there.

One of the best things about Tuscaloosa is Munny Sokol Park, which is actually two parks spread out over 325 acres that includes hiking trails, a playground, four lighted adult softball fields, two lighted youth softball fields, two lighted multi-purpose soccer/football fields, and a multipurpose arena. The park also has a community garden area, where citizens can rent a plot to grow their own vegetables. Travis and Geli are vegans (yeah, I don’t understand it either) and have a couple of garden plots there.

We decided to take the UDI U818A quadcopter and see how it flew in a wide open space, and it did quite well until we had drained the two batteries we had. When I order my new drone next week, I plan to order a few extra batteries, since flying time is only a few minutes on each one. Fortunately, they are inexpensive and rechargeable, so with half a dozen on hand you can get some decent flying time in.

The second battery went dead just as a bunch of kids showed up for a soccer game on the field we were flying in so we drove to another field in the park and I took out my Prism Snapshot 1.9 speed foil. There wasn’t much wind, no more than about 6 – 8 miles per hour, with an occasional gust. We managed to get the kite up in the air a few times, and the occasional stiff gust pulled just enough to give Travis an idea of the potential of the kite on a good windy day. Today the forecast is for winds in the 12 mile per hour range, with gusts to 22. That’s about perfect, so we’ll try it again. If we do have that kind of wind, I predict that by the end of the day Travis will be hooked on kite flying, too.

Today is your last chance to enter this week’s Free Drawing for an audiobook of Big Lake Blizzard, the fourth book in my Big Lake mystery series. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn this evening.

Big Lake Blizzard audio

Thought For The Day – Becoming an adult is the dumbest thing I have ever done.

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

Cold, Gray and Ugly

 Posted by at 12:18 am  Nick's Blog
Jan 242015
 

No, I’m not referring to my ex-wife. Really, I’m not. I swear. I’m talking about the weather here in Tuscaloosa, Alabama the last couple of days. It’s been downright miserable. We even had a few snow flurries predicted for Friday night!

Today it’s supposed to be clear, with highs in the low 50s. That may not be ideal, but it’s better than what we’ve been having. If it’s calm, my son Travis and I may get the drone in the air for a while, and if there’s any wind we’ll try my Prism Snapshot speed foil instead.

In yesterday’s blog I wrote that I bought a UDI U818A quadcopter with a built-in camera and Travis and I were having a lot of fun with it. So much fun that it will be staying here when we leave and I’ll order myself another one once we get to Texas. Yeah, I’m a good dad. Smile

I have to say that Terry and I are not overly impressed with Tuscaloosa. On April 27, 2011 an EF5 tornado with 190 mile per hour winds cut a wide swath through Tuscaloosa and on to Birmingham, killing 64 people and doing $2.8 billion in damage. While the city and the University of Alabama have spent millions since then, building everything from parking garages to additional student housing, there are still neighborhoods, especially on the poor side of town, that continue to look like a war zone, with the empty shells of damaged homes untouched.

House ruin

The city seems to live and breathe on the college’s football program and the Crimson Tide is more than a sports team, it’s a religion here. I’ve been to a lot of cities that love their teams, but here I get the feeling that a lot of people would rather have the latest Roll Tide banner or flag than pay their rent.

Have you entered this week’s Free Drawing yet? This week’s prize is an audiobook of Big Lake Blizzard, the fourth book in my Big Lake mystery series. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.

Big Lake Blizzard audio

If you’re looking for a good romance story, my friend Mona Ingram’s Loving From Afar, the first book in her The Women of Independence series is a good bet. A semi-finalist in the 2014 Best Kindle Book Awards, it’s currently free on Amazon and Barnes and Noble for Nook readers.

Thought For The Day – If you go to a bar where everybody knows your name, you’re probably an alcoholic.

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

And The Rain Came

 Posted by at 12:48 am  Nick's Blog
Jan 232015
 

It’s been cool but clear here in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and as I said in yesterday’s blog, there hasn’t been enough breeze for kite flying. But late yesterday afternoon it started raining, and by last night it was coming down hard. And the weatherman is even saying there is a chance of snow flurries. I highly disapprove!

Hopefully the storm will pass on through by the weekend so we can enjoy the rest of our time here before we hit the road on Monday. Nothing brings out my best sniveling more than cold weather. Even I don’t want to listen to it!

Jim Guld from Geeks on Tour has one. Greg White has a couple of them. And I’ve wanted one for a long time. So I finally gave in and ordered a remote control drone from Amazon, a UDI U818A quadcopter with a built-in camera. It was delivered to my son’s place yesterday, and after charging up the battery we had a lot of fun with it. We started out inside, which really ticked the cats off, and then took it outside and flew it for a while. It can really take a beating. We bounced it off the walls, the ceiling, and once we were outside, off a tree or two and it came through it all just fine.

Drone

At one point it came down on the roof of the deck and we thought the fun was over already. Travis was getting ready to climb up and get it down when it occurred to me that it flies. Well, duh! So I flew it back down to the ground. Yep, he’s my kid! If the rain stops we’ll get it back out and fly some more before we leave here.

If the weather cooperates, we plan to take Interstate 20 into Texas and then south on U.S. Highway 59 to Livingston for a day or two before we go on to the Thousand Trails in Columbus. Plan B, if the weather looks problematic, is to drop down to Interstate 10 and follow it into Texas, in which case we won’t make it up to Livingston. I hope we can get to Livingston. It’s been a while since we’ve been to Rainbows End, the headquarters of the Escapees RV Club, and we’ve got some dear friends there we’d like to stop and see.

Have you entered this week’s Free Drawing yet? This week’s prize is an audiobook of Big Lake Blizzard, the fourth book in my Big Lake mystery series. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.

Big Lake Blizzard audio

Thought For The Day – As I watched the dog chasing its tail I thought “Dogs are easily amused. Then I realized that I was watching the dog chasing its tail.

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

Jan 222015
 

We are hanging out in Tuscaloosa, Alabama this week, visiting my son Travis and his wife Geli, so I don’t have much to write about from an RV standpoint. We’re parked at the Elks lodge, which is about five miles from their house and has full hookup 50 amp RV sites for $20 a night.

If you don’t belong to the Elks and Moose, you really should become a member. It will give you a lot of very good overnight parking opportunities. If you would like to join the Elks and are going to be at the Escapees Escapade rally in Tucson, the Elk C-BoF on the ROW at Escapade has arranged with the Willcox Elks lodge to hold an expedited indoctrination and initiation on Monday, March 16, 2015 at 6:30 p.m.

I will be presenting five seminars at Escapade, Highway History & Back Road Mystery, The Frugal RVer, Welcome to My Arizona, The Reluctant RVer, and Full-Timing FAQs. I hope we see a lot of you at the rally. My buddy Greg White will also be presenting his popular Gate Guarding seminar in Tucson.

Originally I had planned to do a separate half-day self-publishing workshop before or after the Escapade, but the fairgrounds has another rally scheduled and there won’t be a place to hold it available or RV parking for anybody who wanted to attend.

I wanted to introduce my son Travis to sport kite flying while we were here, but there hasn’t been any wind since we arrived in Tuscaloosa. The weather has been nice, in the mid-60s during the day and the mid-to-upper 30s at night, though we are supposed to see some rain in the next couple of days. We’re hoping for a little bit of wind before we leave town. Knowing my luck, it will stay calm until we have to get back on the road and then start to blow.

It’s time for a new Free Drawing, and this week’s prize is an audiobook of Big Lake Blizzard, the fourth book in my Big Lake mystery series. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.

Big Lake Blizzard audio

Thought For The Day – Those who can laugh without cause have either found the true meaning of happiness or have gone stark raving mad.

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

Jan 212015
 

Who are these modern day gypsies who spend their lives on the road? What prompted them to leave their former homes and communities for a life on wheels? Each week we will introduce you to some of the fulltime RVers we meet in our travels and those who read this blog.

Can you think of a better way to spend your retirement than living in our country’s beautiful National Parks and other natural areas? Neither could Carl and Sandy Greenbaum, who spend their time volunteering in National Parks and National Wildlife Refuges (NWR).

Greenbaum

They’ve been doing it for over eight years and have developed a pattern of volunteering in Florida or Arizona in the winter and at Grand Teton National Park in summer. They have done volunteer gigs in Okefenokee, (three winters), Santa Ana, and at Oregon Coast (two summers) NWRs, Ocala (two winters) and Pisgah National Forest, Tumacacori National Historical Park, Potter Marsh (Alaska), Patagonia Lake State Park in Arizona, Fort Caroline National Memorial, and Grand Teton.

Before retirement they lived in Hudson, New Hampshire for 28 years, where Sandy was a teacher, trainer, and technical writer, and Carl spent 31 years as an electrical engineer. Carl and Sandy have been fulltiming for 4½ years, and for the six years before that they spent 6-9 months a year on road.

Longtime campers, they had two different van campers in the 1970s when their kids were small. From 1982 to 2000 they had a dry spell with no RVs, then they bought a used Safari Trek for weekend and summer trips. When retirement approached, they traded up for a 34 foot National Dolphin, and in early 2007 they traded it for their current coach, a Tiffin Phaeton 35 DH.

They said they began fulltiming when they realized that their condo in Lowell, Massachusetts was setting empty from 6 to 9 months a year, and decided to sell it. Like most new fulltimers, they moved around a lot in the first three years, traveling to Alaska, Mexico, Belize, Newfoundland, and Baja, putting 55,000 miles on the Dolphin in 3½ years. Now they explore new places between volunteer gigs. They have traveled in caravans to Mexico and Belize, and to Baja and Canada several times on their own.

They have been to Alaska twice, a three month “vacation” trip in 2003 that included the usual sites like Fairbanks, Denali, Anchorage, Chicken, Homer, and Seward, plus a several day trip to Juneau by ferry. In 2008 they returned and volunteered at Potter Marsh, just south of Anchorage.

When asked what some of their favorite places have been, Carl and Sandy said wherever they are at the moment. When pressed for a more specific answer, they said it would be Grand Teton and the Oregon Coast.

The Greenbaums belong to the FMCA, Good Sam, and Passport America. They attended two Life on Wheels conferences and several FMCA rallies, all in the first few years. They said they attended many seminars and classes at those events, and rate Mac McCoy’s fire safety classes as their favorites.

Now they rarely go to RV shows and rallies. They are too busy birding, taking photos, volunteering, making new friends and having fun. They want to visit as many National Parks and Wildlife Refuges as possible.

When asked about their best day fulltiming, the Greenbaums said it was hard to choose just one. Maybe close sightings of grizzly bears and moose in the campground at Grand Teton, or perhaps seeing seals, sea lions, thousands of nesting sea birds and gray and Orca whales offshore on the Oregon coast. In both of these cases they were volunteering and these “best days” occurred often!

Their worst day fulltiming was when they were stuck in Birmingham, Alabama for a week with a blown turbo on their coach.

Carl and Sandy agree that the hardest part of leaving their old lives is being away from friends and family. They both had jobs they enjoyed, but traveling across the country is better.

When asked what advice they would give to a newbie, they said that fulltiming is wonderful, but not for everyone. Make sure you love the lifestyle before you sell everything.

Summing up their feelings about their lives as fulltime RVers, Carl and Sandy said that fulltiming and volunteering have given them great opportunities to live in beautiful places, meet many great people, and help others enjoy our parks and refuges. They plan to continue until health or boredom (unlikely) makes them hang up the keys. I suspect that they are having way too much fun for that to happen anytime soon.

Thought For the Day – Being young is beautiful, but being old is comfortable.

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

Time To Simplify

 Posted by at 12:23 am  Nick's Blog
Jan 202015
 

I’ve been vexed by technical gremlins the last few days and it’s time to simplify. I’m about to get a map, a compass, and a tire pressure gauge and throw a whole bunch of electronic gadgets away.

When we left the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa I already knew our basic route, north on Interstate 75 to Interstate 10, west to US Highway 231, and then north to Dothan, Alabama. 375 miles, give or take a potty break or two along the way. However, my Rand McNally RV GPS had other ideas. It wanted to route us west into the Tampa area and then north on US Highway 19 for 224 miles to Interstate 10 and then into Georgia and on to Dothan. It would have saved us maybe 30 miles, but a lot of it would be stop and go traffic through endless small towns as we made our way up the west coast of Florida. We like the back roads sometimes, but not at the expense of two or more hours when we’re in “get there” mode.

The inner dual tire on our left side has a nasty habit of losing 20 pounds or so any time we sit in one place for a week or more, and this trip was no exception. Before we left the fairgrounds I checked the pressure in all of our tires on the motorhome and Explorer and aired up all of them that needed it. About 40 miles into our trip, our tire pressure monitor went off saying that the outside left dual was at 125 degrees while the inside was at 71 degrees. That didn’t sound good, so I pulled off at a handy rest area and went to check them out. Using my infrared thermometer it showed that both tires were at 77 and 79 degrees respectively. Then the monitor showed that the inside dual was at 90 pounds and the outside was at 130. I used my regular tire pressure gauge and both were at 110.

And just for fun, the monitor showed that one of the tires on the Explorer was down to 19 pounds. Nope, 40 pounds, just like the rest of them. After checking each tire on the rig and toad with my tire pressure gauge I confirmed that they were all at the correct temperatures, but for the rest of the trip the tire pressure monitor went off every twenty minutes or so. We finally just ignored it.

But wait, there’s more! I use a small Acer netbook to keep track of things with my engine with the Silverleaf engine monitoring system. It’s great when it works, but for the last year it has repeatedly lost power when on the road. I decided that the problem was the small inverter that I plug into a cigarette lighter outlet to provide AC to the laptop. So I bought a new Schumacher inverter to replace it. It’s a great little inverter, but the same thing happened again. The netbook will charge off the inverter when not in use, but going down the road it runs off battery power until the battery is exhausted and then it shuts down. Now I suspect the computer’s power cord may be the culprit. Or maybe not. When we got into Tuscaloosa and were parked, I plugged it back into the inverter and it works fine. Yep, time to haul them all over to the dumpster and be done with it.

Refrigerator update – we were on the road six hours Sunday and about three hours into the trip I turned on the generator for an hour and everything was okay when we got stopped for the night. Yesterday (Monday) was another six hour trip and this time we went the whole distance without using the generator and there was not much change in the interior temps from the day before, 47 degrees in the refrigerator and 10 in the freezer.

After the Escapade rally and medical appointments in Tucson, we plan to run over to Yuma and have Larry Crutcher at Starlight Solar install a Magnum pure sine wave inverter to replace our thirteen year year old Xantrex modified sine wave unit, and I also want to replace our Interstate batteries with Lifeline AGMs. We had them in our MCI bus conversion, and even though we don’t dry camp much anymore I still want them for their long life and ease of maintenance. I can’t seem to get Greg White to follow me around the country checking and servicing my batteries all the time. He came up with some selfish excuse about kids and grandkids and having a life of his own. And he wouldn’t even agree to pick up half the cost of the AGMs I’m forced to buy because of that lack of attention on his part. What a jerk! Smile

Thought For The Day – Sometimes we create our own heartbreaks through expectation.

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

Jan 182015
 

We love exploring America’s back roads and small towns and finding overlooked gems that the tourist brochures never cover. In a series of weekly blog posts, we will be sharing some of America’s lesser-known small town museums, historic sites, and oddball attractions, on a state-by-state basis.

Anchorage: The Alaska Aviation Museum tells the story of the bush pilots who transport people and supplies through the Alaska back country. Located at 4721 Aircraft Drive.

Float plane

Anchorage: The Alaska Native Heritage Center Museum celebrates Alaska Native cultures with exhibits of Native arts, crafts, storytellers, and dancers. Located at 8800 Heritage Center Drive.

Anchorage: The Alaska State Trooper Museum at 245 W. 5th Avenue tells the story of the brave men and women who brought law and order to one of the most rugged landscapes in the world.

Delta Junction: The Alaska Homestead and Historical Museum honors the pioneers who settled Alaska. Included are a log house, green house, gardens, freight dog team, barns, corrals, logging mining, farming equipment collections and an operating sawmill.

Fairbanks: Musk oxen, reindeer, and caribou can be seen at the University of Alaska’s Large Animal Research Station. A mummified steppe bison, the state’s gold-mining history and largest collection of native gold and Alaska’s Russian heritage are all on display at the University of Alaska’s Museum of the North as well.

CBCalf

Haines: The Hammer Museum at 108 Main Street has an impressive collection of more than 1,400 hammers.

Haines: Every year thousands of bald eagles come to the nearby Alaska Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve to feed on spawning salmon. The American Bald Eagle Foundation Museum displays exhibits on Alaskan wildlife. Located at 113 Haines Highway.

Homer: The Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies at 708 Smoky Bay Way gives visitors a close look at the marine and coastal ecosystems of Kachemak Bay through guided and unguided hiking tours, as well as guided boat and kayak tours.

Juneau: Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Last Chance Mining Museum exhibits one of the world’s largest air compressors, other equipment, and artifacts used in hard rock gold mining. The museum’s collection also features locomotives and rail cars used to carry workers to the mine and ore to the mill. Located at 1001 Basin Road.

Seward: At the Alaska Sealife Center, Alaska’s only public aquarium and ocean wildlife rescue center, visitors can see everything from puffins, octopus, and sea lions to harbor seals. Located at 301 Railway Avenue.

Wasilla: The Museum of Alaska Transportation and Industry displays trains, aircraft, mining equipment, fire trucks, a sheepherder’s wagon, dog sleds and antique cars. Located at 3800 W Museum Drive.

Transport Museum

Today is your last chance to enter this week’s Free Drawing for an audiobook of Gun Shy, the fifth book in Ben Rehder’s excellent Blanco County mystery series. I’m a big fan of Ben’s small town Texas series, and if you try it you will be, too. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn this evening.

Gun Shy

Thought For The Day – If midnight snacks are bad for us, why is there a light in the refrigerator?

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our E-Book Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal