Monday, May 3 – We pulled out of Vicksburg at 8:00 am. Boy, is I-20 between Vicksburg and Jackson bumpy....at one point I slowed down to 45 mph and put on my emergency flashers for about 5 miles......Kawabunga !
We fueled up at Pilot in Winona, MS – just north of Jackson- paying the most we've ever paid, $3.22/gal for diesel. Luckily we average over 10 mpg today.
We drove about 50 miles on the Natchez Trace Parkway between Mathison, MS and Tupelo, MS. The 444-mile Natchez Trace Parkway commemorates an ancient trail used by animals and people that connected southern portions of the Mississippi River, through Alabama, to salt licks in today's central Tennessee.
In the 1800’s, it was the main return route for Ohio Valley traders who, rather than fight the Mississippi currents, sold their flatboats for the value of their timber in Natchez and walked home via the Old Trace. By mid-century, steamboats made the dangerous track unnecessary, and the Old Trace disappeared and was replaced by the New Trace. There are campgrounds, wayside exhibits, almost 400 types of wildlife and over 2,100 types of plants.
It was a great day for a ride.
The last 20 miles into Red Bay, AL, was on a two lane road, US 23, that twisted and turned through the Alabama countryside. I can't believe they don't have a better road into this city. Granted it is a small city of about 3,000 population, but Tiffin Motor Homes is a one of the leading producers of motor homes in the country. They're building twelve motor homes per day and that means dozens of semi trucks bringing tons of parts. That doesn't include the over 170 MH in their campground waiting on service.....Jeesh!
Anyway....end of rant.....
In retrospect....Marsha & I took a ride today (Thursday, May 6) and we see they are building a new divided highway into Red Bay. They must have heard me ranting...lol !!!!
We were sitting in the “over-flow” camping area of Camp Allegro, the Tiffin Motors campground. The Tiffin campground, adjacent to the service facility, has full hookups and is available for owners awaiting service. Depending on the nature of the service or repairs, owners can stay in their coaches in the service bays while work is in progress. We have to boondock until a site is available. The camp host said we should get a full-hook-up site tomorrow or by Wednesday at the latest.
When checking into the campground, they give you a service number if you're there for repairs. We turned in our work order, so now we wait our turn. Appointments are not available. They are completely booked for the entire year! We are on a first come, first served basis at the Express Bays. These bays are set aside for people unable to get appointments. They have over 45 service bays in this huge building.
The campground is built at an old airstrip, so it is all gravel, except for the main campground road which is the old asphalt runway. You can still see the runway numbers painted on the asphalt....ha ha!
I'm sure they hate to risk hiring and training more service techs and adding additional service bays in this very slow RV economy, but they need to do something to keep their customers happy!
Tuesday, May 4 - About 2:30, the phone call came.....we were moving from our temporary boondocking site to a full hook-up site. Ahhh.....electricity.... which means air conditioning....that's nice in Alabama! We're hanging around the MH the rest of the afternoon because the service writer may stop by to write up our order. They said not to worry, if he doesn't see us this afternoon he'll catch us tomorrow....crazy. Being two former teachers, we are not accustomed to this southern laid-back style!
Our site….not much to write home about.
Can you guess where Red Bay got its name? Here are two hints…
That’s right….from the red clay dirt and the Bay tree. Good Job!
Some sites around the city…
We did some shopping at a place called McKinney RV. McKinney RV is a full-service RV Dealership and RV Service Provider. It is right across the street from the campground. We were looking for several items at a good price. We bought a sun shade for the driver side for $75. We found it at anther RV dealer for $200. I’d say…that is a pretty good buy.
Tons of tables and chairs and booths.
Need new stairs?
How about new wheels?
Thanks for stopping by. Next post….Tiffin plant tour.