With only 86 miles to drive Wednesday, and a tentative check in time of 3 pm at the KOA in Missoula we had a leisurely morning. We didn't take anything out of the trailer, except the car and the anti gravity chairs so all I had to do after putting away the anti gravity chairs Tuesday evening was put away the sewer hose, water hose, the VW, and finally our electrical umbilical cord. Even leaving at 11 am (we actually left at 10:30 am....you know me.....when I'm ready to go, I'm ready) we would still arrive in Missoula well before the posted 3 pm check in time on the KOA website, but we thought we would just call when we were about 40 miles out and see if we could check in early....that usually elicits a positive response. Take it from me, it is never well received by office staff when you arrive early....unannounced.
The drive west back to Missoula was mostly downhill as that is the direction the Clark Fork River flows, and rivers tend to follow the pass of least resistance which happens to be downhill. By 11:15 we were just 41 miles outside Missoula as we pulled into a Rest Stop. I called the KOA, and was advised we could check in as early as 1 pm...perfect. We were around 45 minutes out, so that meant we had to kill about an hour. We hung out at the Rest Stop for about 15 minutes, and then continued on to Missoula.
When we exited I-90 it was just 12:30 pm so we found a large parking lot in which to park, and kill the last 30 minutes. By this time it was edging quickly toward the high of the day, and it was getting warm in the Newell....this is one of the reasons why we prefer to begin our travel days earlier in the day during the summer so we can beat the heat to the next RV park, plug in and get the A/C going before it gets hot. On this day we had no choice but to begin our day much later than we prefer. At any rate, we arrived at the park at 12:55 pm, and were in our pre-paid site by 1:05 pm, and cooling down the Newell interior with both A/C's running. Within 10 minutes the interior was pleasantly cool, and we were relaxing.
So why only travel 86 miles Wednesday to Missoula, when we could have left early from Deer Lodge and been in Couer d'Alene, ID? Well, our good friends, Richard and Rhonda, who also own a Newell, were traveling east bound on I-90 into Missoula, and we made arrangements to meet them at the KOA....it's been 18 months since we last saw them at their home in Inverness, FL and we needed to catch up......