Friday, October 21, 2011

Chestnut Ridge Park & Campground, Morgantown, WV

It rained off & on all night as well as the morning while I hooked up. Matilda, the maid of the GPS suggested heading down PA 487 then west on 118. For those not familiar with Ricketts Glen, they have an advisory on their web page as well as most of their camping literature suggesting that all large trailers use the north entrance (PA 487). Of course that is difficult at present since a bridge on 487 is out just a few miles north of the campground and the alternative is Dutch Mountain road described yesterday. The reason for coming in from the north? PA 487 from Red Rock goes up a 2 mile 18% grade. I drove down it in 2nd & 3rd gear riding the brakes, but made it with no problems. Was tempted to turn around & go back up just to say I did, but thought again and kept going.

Red Rock is interesting. There is a corner grocery store that has your basic needs, including the least expensive gas in the area ($3.43). I also got my morning 2nd cup cup of coffee & headed south. Other than that, that seems to be all of Red Rock. I also never saw a red rock, a popular name for southwestern towns that actually have lots of red rocks.

The drive was in & out of rain the whole way to West Virginia. It also got colder as I went south! Not suppose to happen! I left Ricketts Glen at 55°F & hit Morgantown at 42°F at 3:00. Oh well, at least the campground has water & electric. I'm in site 50 at the Chestnut Ridge Park & Campground. Another rustic public park much like Evergreen Trails (my infamous first night), just the type I like. It would be nicer if the sun was out & it was 80°F, but it is October. I checked the predictions for Morgantown, VA (the closest city) and the overnight low is 40°F. Since it is already 41 at 4:30, I don't know how accurate that is but I did hook up to water. Hope I won't have a frozen hose in the morning!

I'm sitting in the trailer with the electric heater going waiting for it to get warm enough to slow down so I can start the toaster oven to cook a pot pie. My heater is an old (1986) Pelonis Disk Furnace. The reason I like it for camping is you can adjust the wattage. Most electric heaters give you a choice of 1500 or 750 watts (or close to that). The Pelonis has two modes. The first is automatic. It starts at full 1500 watts, and as the trailer warms up drops the wattage to what ever is necessary to maintain the set temperature. Much better than a on/off thermostat since it drops your power draw to the minimum necessary to maintain temperature. The second mode is useful on low power hookups. You dial the wattage. If you are on a 15 amp service you can set it as low as 300 watts. Although they still make Pelonis disk heaters, I don't think this design is still available.

Not much in the way of photos today. The leaf color was all over the place on the drive down, but in many places wonderful. Not all that photographic since the sides of the road usually have power lines and other junk in the way and there aren't many places to pull off, but I included a couple along US 220. I also included a photo of Site 50 at the campground.

I'll have to wait for a better internet connection to post this - although the Verizon connection is listed as 469.17 Kbps, it is too slow to post with either Dreamweaver (my Lakeshore Images pages) or Blogger (Jon's Journeys). Actually, I think my router lied to me - I just reconnected to the Verizon network & the data rate is now 78.73 Kbps , which explains why I'm having problems posting. It will just have to wait until tomorrow!

It's tomorrow & I'm posting from a rest stop on I 79 in WV.  So, Until Later!


  1. Great report and SUPER photo's...I can never get my water falls to turn out that do you do it...I'm in White Sands...leave tomorrow...homeward bound I think....keep up the great posts, trips and photo's....later Horst sends

  2. Thanks Horst! I usually use a neutral density filter to give me a lower shutter speed, but it has been so dreary this trip I haven't needed it. Most of the images were shot at ISO 50 @ f:16 - 22.

    I hope sometime we will meet in person. I currently plan on being at the Oregon Gathering July 10 - 16th, and hope to be touring the southwest prior to then.