Hey, I thought WE were chasing the weather? Not the other way around!
Updated: Jul 8, 2020
Well, I do apologize for taking so long to update this blog. Looking back at our last story, so much has happened and changed since our first month on the road. Can you believe (we can't), that we've been on the road for almost 3 months??? What?? Like they say... we now have proof that... time flies when you're having fun! Literally! Half the time we don't know what day of the week it is or the date. Thank goodness for iPhones or we'd be lost. Truly!
Brian and I have now traversed several states since our last blog. We left New Mexico, spent a week in Colorado, a little time passing through Nebraska and almost a month in South Dakota. We'd planned only 2 weeks in SD to get our domicile completed, but ended up falling in love! More on that later!
Our plan had always been to follow the weather. Stay out of the heat, tornados and hurricanes and chase the 70's and 80's. Since leaving Arizona, we thought we'd left the heat behind. Oh how naive are we? We were doing a great job of this until we landed in Colorado and it hasn't stopped.
Hasty, Colorado. Just getting ready to cook dinner, we get a tap on the door from the park ranger telling us a tornado had been spotted and we needed to get into the bathhouse ASAP. Our first tornado while living in an RV! In seconds flat, we grab the dogs, purse, jackets, keys and phone and head for the bathhouse. The sky was green, swirling and full of lightning. Yikes! We huddled with 20 or 30 of our fellow campers in a hot and cramped bathhouse hallway full of toilet paper and cleaning supplies. We could hear the rain pouring down heavily and had no idea what was going on without any windows. Images of our motorhome tipped over without a roof was going through our heads.
LUCKILY, no tornado touched down. Phew! Dodged a bullet!
The tornado warnings and storms would follow us into South Dakota! After four of these, we feel like we've learned enough to share with others.
As RV'ers we share some unique challenges not experienced in a sticks and bricks. Here's what we learned:
1) Keep our eyes on the weather. When we're stationary, we check it once a day. When traveling, we look at the weather for the destination and travel path before heading out. Our go to is the Weather Channel app and our weather radio. Twice, we've extended our stay at a location to wait out a passing storm.
2) When we arrive at our destination, we look for areas to shelter. This can be a campground bathroom, hotel or other large building, ditches and low lying areas.
3) We now have a "go" bag prepared with essentials should we have to leave and find shelter. In it we keep a flashlight, radio, water, dog leashes, keys and other important items.
4) We keep our eye on the weather and our iPhones close by. We've set our phone to provide alerts for severe thunderstorms and tornados.
5) We're more aware of where we camp, especially boondocking. We keep our eyes out for trees, large projectiles, low lying areas and potential for mud and getting stuck.
This morning, we received another tornado warning, but after watching the weather channel closely, we could see the warning was positioned farther South and moving South from where we're located. As we head into Illinois and Indiana, we know these storms and warnings will continue. At least now we feel more prepared to....weather the storm.
In addition to surviving the storms, we've spent time in some amazing places. We'll cover those in our next blog. Until then, travel safe and let us know if you have any suggestions for weathering the storm!