Walkin’ to Idaho

We spent a cool, soggy weekend near Sumpter, Oregon with Natasha, Seth and Archer, my parents, and my aunt and cousins. Fortunately my dad brought firewood!



During rainy times, we played cards in the “garage” of my cousins’ toy hauler trailer. With two trailers, fires and some breaks in the rain – we made out okay. But, we are planning our gathering for June next year!

By Sunday night, only we and my parents remained. They took us to dinner in Baker for our 36th anniversary and then headed back to Vancouver the next day.


Monday morning the sun was shining so we decided to stay another day. We’re retired – we can do that!


Union Campground, between Baker and Sumpter, is one of our favorite spots, so it was an easy decision to stay and enjoy the quiet and trails.

While we wandered around the park we saw this tree top nest and sitting osprey (?).


A day late, we made our way to Copperfield Park in Oxbow, Oregon. This park is one of a series of campgrounds along the Snake River developed by Idaho Power. Every third vehicle in Oxbow is a white Idaho Power truck!  We also saw a deer wandering down the street.

When we arrived and did our regular set up, the bed frame in our bedroom slide settled askew. We have had trouble before but this was by far the most dramatic event. Handy Randy had to resurrect his engineering skills and took a full two hours to diagnose the problem and figure a solution.


The original design had the bed frame attached to a wall with eight screws. Given the movement of the slide, those screws tore away from the wall with time and use. The fact that we have a heavier memory foam mattress, instead of the cheap RV mattress that came with the trailer, was surely a factor. However, the slide itself pivots up and down  about 4 inches as it makes its way in and out every time we move. Randy was very disappointed by this design because it was “guaranteed to self destruct and rip away from the wall.” It was no surprise that it eventually did just that.

Handy Randy eventually figured a solution that stabilized the frame and allowed for the needed slide movement without actually attaching the bed frame to the wall. He had to go 17 miles to the nearest hardware store in Halfway, Oregon, spend $27 and get 16 pounds of wood and screws (weight matters in a trailer).  Once again, Randy fixed the problem himself. If we had taken the trailer in for repair, they would have undoubtably just replaced the screws and we’d have had the same thing happen again down the road.

While he was spending all day on his project, I spent several hours repairing a quilt that my grandmother made for us as a wedding gift 36 years ago. My stitching is an insult to this beautiful quilt, but at least the loose pieces are secure.

It took all day but finally our separate bed projects were completed! Then it was time to enjoy the park and the area.


Copperfield Park is meticulously maintained and has lots of green grass – something we thoroughly enjoy these days.

We had hummingbird visitors including  this beautiful orange guy!  Our birder friend, Mark, says an iridescent neck indicates a bird is a male – typical in the bird world!


We were very close to the Snake River.  In fact, we walked to Idaho (across the bridge) a couple times each day!


A view of Copperfield Park from the Idaho side.


From the Idaho side we could see the Oxbow power plant, part of the Oxbow Dam complex.  It is interesting that this close to a power plant, we still only had 30 amp power.  Of course, this park was developed before there were so many “big rigs” wanting 50 amps.

Oxbow and Copperfield Park are just south of Hells Canyon Recreation Area.  We have been to the recreation area numerous times (not to say we’ve seen it all) so we decided to drive  along the Snake River and explore the other Idaho Power parks.



Elko got tired of the scenery and took a nap.


Randy and Elko waiting while I took a picture or two or three.

This morning Elko’s stroll was walkin’ to Idaho again.  He alerted me to a deer but then lost interest.  The deer was way more interested in the big, black dog than me.


As I write, we are driving in Idaho.  We are on our way to familiar territory, Ponderosa State Park in McCall, Idaho. We are excited to spend most of a week camping with our friends, Darrell and Cindy. If any more of our Idaho friends happen to be in McCall – please let us know. We’d love to get together before we head to New England in mid-June.

About Serene

Former full time RVers, transitioned to homeowners and travelers. We've still got a map to finish! Home is the Phoenix area desert and a small cabin in the White Mountains of Arizona.
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6 Responses to Walkin’ to Idaho

  1. Mark McClelland says:

    Good looking Rufous Hummingbird! Sorry to hear abut the slide issues with your trailer. It sounds like Randy got it sorted out and made it better than new. We’ve only got a 30 amp hook-up here, and with all of the heating we’re doing it takes some juggling!

    • Serene says:

      Ha! I’m not the least bit surprised that you knew what kind of hummingbird that was. So cool to see an orange one – my pictures didn’t do it justice but he wasn’t very cooperative. Randy and I were talking yesterday that even if we use this trailer for 10 years – it will still be better than new with all the fixes and add-ons. The new slide/bed frame fix worked perfectly today when we moved.

  2. Jim K says:

    Engineers rule! Good job Randy– I know your slide out bed solution is far better than the “stock” design. Frustrating to spend money on a and have to continuously fix the things that were designed and done poorly.

    • Serene says:

      Hi Jim, Randy Here. Thanks for the encouragement. Yes, I think my design is “better than new” since it should last indefinitely now. The original design was never going to work long term. I have noticed that every RV out there has problems though. Even the high end brands. So far in the two years we have been on the road, I have been able to fix almost everything. Nothing big yet thankfully. I follow blogs where people are replacing axles and whole suspension systems.

  3. Kathy and Steve Large says:

    Absolutely amazing life journey. Steve and I think if of you often. Continue to travel safe and fill our cups with your adventures—glad Randy is using his engineering!

    • Serene says:

      So nice to hear from you! And glad you enjoy our little stories along the way. We count our blessings everyday to be able to live this season of our lives wandering around having adventures. All the best to you!

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