Monday, July 13, 2015

July 13–Buttermilk Falls State Park

Today was supposed to be “Get some maintenance done on the RV day” but it turned out much better.

The RV chassis (engine and drive train) have not had any work done on them for two years. All I have done is regular oil changes and greasing. With all the steep hills and mountains we have gone up and down this year and last I figured I had better get at least the brakes and transmission checked.

When we were at Hickory Run I called some near and not so near Ford dealers and RV dealers but no one could work on an RV this big. I called my roadside assistance service to see if they could do better. The best they could do was a Ford dealer that was 140 miles away. It happens that it is only 40 miles away from our current campground so I booked an appointment for today.

I wanted them to check the brakes, fully expecting to need new pads, since they have never been changed. I also wanted them to check the transmission fluid because of the killer hills that are very hard on the transmission.

We got up early to get to the dealer by 8, knowing the service would probably take all day. The mechanic took it for a road test and then checked everything. At about 9 the service advisor came over and said that as much as he would like to sell me a full brake service the RV didn’t need anything. The brake fluid, transmission fluid and coolant were all fine and even after 6 summers and 63000 km the brake pads still had 60% of the original thickness left. They charged me $100 for the check but for my peace of mind it was well worth it.

We went and had some greasy McDonalds breakfast so Jennie could use their WIFI and then we were back at the RV park all setup again just after 11.

Since the forecast for tomorrow and Wednesday have a high chance of rain we decided that we had better not waste the great weather today so we headed over to the nearby Buttermilk Falls State Park.

We did another gorge trail. The trail from yesterday and today could not be much more different. Here the big waterfall was right at the start. Then then over the next 0.8 miles we climbed up about 500 feet via a lot of stairs next to a very narrow gorge.

Buttermilk Falls State Park Map

Buttermilk Falls.



Up we go.




The overlook.



I was a little disappointed by the next section of the trail. We were high up above the gorge and you could not see down into it. Still climbing though. The steps were cement bars and were tough on the feet.


If I held the camera over my head, it could see some of the flowing water.


Then we came to an open area by a small waterfall. From here on the trail was much better as it went right alongside the bottom of the gorge.


The wall beside us was interesting. It almost looked too flat to be natural.


Looking back at the section that we hadn’t been able to see.



Onward and upward.


A flat section reminiscent of yesterday.



If you took this bridge you could shorten the hike and take the rim trail back but you would miss the best part of the gorge.


Just past the bridge was this great scene. Once again, much better in person with the cliffs towering over you.



Looking back to where I was taking the picture.



The column behind Jennie is called The Pinnacle.



Just above the falls there were some deep pools that you (not me) could jump into from a long way up.



She looks like she is standing on the rocks but she is really in mid air.


The dark shadows and bright sunshine made for a lousy picture but you can see all the jumpers warming up in the sun after the cold water.


Ever upwards.


The section of the trail that we were going to do ended soon after that. We could have taken the Rim Trail back so as to not have to go back down all those stairs but I didn’t think there would be much to see so stairs it was.


Back at the bottom, you are allowed to swim and dive in this area only when there is a lifeguard. As there was none now, I guess they are only there on the weekends.


It was a long day but much better than expected. After all the driving I crashed for a long nap.

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