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JC McDowell 2013 Summer Travel Route

We depart Tucson, Arizona early Wednesday morning to start our Summer Season.  It looks like it’s going to be a great summer.  We (crossing fingers) each have helpers/nannies joining us on the road to ease the set up and break down of the Young Guns Fun Park.

Below is MY route this summer.  We are double booked through most of July and all of August.  This year I have a 7 day break between one show while is booked solid until the 17th of August.

JC’s Summer Route
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Hil’s route has about 1,000 miles less of travel and includes several of our best recurring fairs.  Unfortunately for her, they also happen to be the biggest.  So while her travel days are easier, her work days are harder.

Hil’s Summer Route
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We’ll hit Idaho Falls, Id and pull out the trailers and Landcruiser from where we’ve had everything stored over the winter.  Pending mechanical issues, we’ll tow the trailers in the two vehicles up to the Darby, Mt area and find a campsite in the National Forests to empty out each trailer, clean, sort, and touch up all the props.  We have about 12 days to get the work done before hiking out with one setup for our first fair of the season in Crosby, ND.

I’ve spent some time getting the Sprinter ready for camping this year.  I’ve added a hand pump faucet to the sink and a 5 gallon tank.  I installed a drop leaf to the counter with a single burner butane camp stove attached that folds nicely out of the way.  We have the Honda 2kw generator that is running great.

I tried to find a cheap solar panel that would charge our 12v fridge to install on the van but nothing was available within the price range I wanted.  I’ll keep looking or splurge when the cash is available.  With a 65-80 watt solar panel on the van the house battery (a 100 amp/hour AGM sealed deep charge battery) can keep up with the 3 amps per hour the fridge draws during the day.  We would still have to shut the fridge off at night, but otherwise things balance out pretty well.

We have a little work to do in the Darby area to determine if the land we have under contract is feasible.  We wanted to inspect the property when there was no snow up there and I need to get some estimates from providers now that they can actually get up there.  We are on the fence about the land.  After returning from the boat in Mexico, we really enjoy the freedom we have with this lifestyle.  There is a HUGE PAIN IN THE ASS factor with all the schlepping, packing, unpacking, sorting, repacking that we have to do almost 4 times a year right now because we don’t have a home base.  Still for the effort, I think it will only get easier as the kids get older and can handle a more responsibility in managing their own possessions better so Hil and I don’t have to do ALL the work.

Money, as always, is still a huge issue.  After our last lifetime of experiences, I lean toward buying experiences rather than possessions.  Being forced to stay lean and mean is a plus in my book.  Never the less, we are getting older EVERY DAY.  We need to start socking away some cash to augment our pathetic social security (if there will be one when we retire in 28 years) in order for us to live in some cheap third world country (happily).

Remember, it’s not the years…it’s the miles.

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