Friday, May 10, 2013

Luddington, Michigan

Odometer 31941
Trip distance  136 miles

Thursday May 8th, 2013

South Haven to Luddington by back roads
Smooth, quiet blacktop all to ourselves-  I love the blue roads!   After all the interstates we have had to take since Maryland this is the life!  Going our own speed and stopping when we want...  There are many small lakes all along the Michigan coast line-so we stopped a lot.

Here we pulled over to look at Stony Lake about half way from Muskegon to Luddington, while on aptly named Scenic Drive.

A few miles further up the road we came on to the village of Pentwater a nice little tourist mecca with a great sportsfishing harbor.

At Silver lake, there are dunes on the far side (Lake Michigan side)

We are very delighted to see that windpower is getting quite common throughout the country.  We noticed these towers twirling over the blooming fruit trees today.

We arrived at Vacation Station RV Park in Luddington at 4 PM and got settled into a very nice spot in a mostly empty park.  We seem to be just on the leading edge of the vacation weather here. The afternoon was sunny and warm, with the portent of some rain clouds moving in later.
Since we were in a nice level lot with a generous concrete slab, I decided to look into our water heater.  We lost the 110 volt water heating element a couple weeks ago and I haven't had the time or situation to look into it up til now.  On our coach the water heater is in one of the aft bays below the floor line.  A quick check on the web told me that our water heater's electric element is in the back of the heater- meaning it has to come out to get to the element

 I had to take out the 20 screws in the front lip of the heater and pry off globs of slilicone sealing every hose penetration to get it to move forward out of the box it is housed in.

 Lucky for me there is a metal cover at the bottom of the bay that gave me access to the element if I pulled the heater out about 8 inches.
Night fell  before I was able to get the old element out, and as forcasted,  dark the clouds rolled in, and before we went to bed the rain had started.

Friday May 9th
The rain is still coming down, so after breakfast I went to Home Depot and bought a socket that would allow me to unscrew and re-install heating elements, then, dressed in rain gear I slid under the coach for the swap.
 In what amounts to laprascopic surgery I was able to get the old element out and put the new one in.  I found the new element at JTS RV Specialists, about 6 miles south of Luddington, and the tech there gave me some good pointers on how getting everything back in the "genie's bottle" (it's a tight space!)

By and large RV parks  don't really want you to  work on your RV while in their park- some some subtrafuge is required- luckily we are in a loop by ourselves and out of regular notice.

I finished up at about noon, so I came in and ate lunch while the water heater heated up- then took a long hot shower!  That's rewarding!

Joan is still not shaking off her cough from the cold she caught in DC.  Worried, I sent her off to the clinic today and the P.A. she saw says it's bronchial spasms and prescribed an inhaler and some codeine cough syrup so we will see.  We hope this will help her shake it off. She is pretty miserable.

It looked like the rain was going to stop, so we got out for a short drive this afternoon, stopping at the municipal park on the shores of Lake Michigan.
 As we approached, we wondered what all the temporary fences were about.  Turns out that the winter storms drive the sand from the beaches up over the parking lot, unless they put up these temporary barriers.
You can see a loader in the distance- there were 3 of them- redistributing the sand down the beach again.

 Here is a picture of  one of 3 of Luddington's local lighthouses.  This is the middle one called North Breakwater Light, a steel plated lighthouse that stands 57 feet above the lake.  It was built in 1871 on the mouth of the Pere Marquette River.

We drove north of town to the 5300 acre Luddington State Park, where we stopped and walked out to the beach in the freezing cold wind.  It is gorgeous.We were the only ones dumb enough to be out there and we soon realized why, and dashed back to the warm car!

The forecast is for a high of 50 degrees tomorrow.  Hmmm....

Your Travelling Friends

Jeff and Joan

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