Coloma RV (6)

You gotta love the view.

Last year we came to this campground on the same weekend in May and noticed that we were in the middle of a large family gathering. In fact, our site sat right between two big rigs with people who were clearly expecting to move freely back and forth, through us, to hang together. We were uncomfortable with that, but established LED string light boundaries and coexisted ok. That was also during the early stages of the pandemic, so we were not ok with people contact. When we arrived this time, we saw, in addition to the dozens of associated groups, a strong showing of formerly relevant campaign flags, making big statements in no uncertain terms. One of them was right next to us. This was displeasing and caused me to question whether I wanted to keep holding onto the site for the same time next year. It would be, for the most part, the same people, since once you have a site, you can pre-reserve it, and this is a very popular campground. But the thing is, it’s a really nice view.


Come the morning, the sweet sound of the river and gentle breeze smoothed many of my ruffled feathers. Kids still walked right in front of us, with or without our physical presence outside. Richard suggested to a group of them that they maybe go around and I would like to say that helped, but I think there were so many families there together that the kids probably didn’t even know which sites were part of their group.

Entertainment in the form of fluffy goslings.

Richard headed out for a ride (up Prospector to Green Valley to Cool) while I held the fort. I had an unexpectedly pleasant chat with the gentleman next to us. I had formed a negative impression, based on his rather bold choices in decor and headwear, but he was friendly and harmless, probably a little lost and out of his element at an event where he didn’t know everybody. So perhaps the trappings offered him some form of comfort. I offered to switch sites with him, since his seemed to be at the end of the row and he could be closer to his people. He thanked me but said they were spread all over the place so we shouldn’t worry that we’re crashing their party. All in all, it was a nice exchange and a good reminder to me that everyone is on their own journey. So rather than pulling on my judgement panties, I can make a couple of charitable donations to vent the energy, and let it go.

After we got home, Richard called the place to see if we could switch sites for next year and we immediately got a confirmation from the management. I’m sure they don’t want us in the middle of the gathering any more than we do. We’ll see how it goes next year.

A must have accessory.

The other noteworthy news from the weekend is the fact that we installed a Magneshade system for the BFW. This is an expensive accessory and you may wonder why we would do this, so close to our pickup date for our BFW-less Dory2. Part of the reasoning is that, if we are going to lend Lola out to friends, she should be properly accoutered. In my opinion (having used it for less than 24 hours), the Magneshade makes the BFW work. Two of our three chief complaints about it are that it creates a fishbowl effect where people can look right in, and that it lets in a substantial amount of heat. This shade goes a long way to solving both of those issues. The way it works is through magnet mounts on the outside that stick to magnets sewn into the shade. It comes with an extendable pole that fits into little corner pockets, so it is pretty easy to put on and take off. When in place, you can see out, but other people can’t see in. We tested that a lot and it was only at night with the interior lights on that we could see in. As for heat, wow. It really makes a difference. We took the interior temperature before we left around noon and it was 72º inside. After about ten minutes with the shade off, it had climbed to 82º. And that was just one brief experiment. It also cuts down the glare, making the light coming through the window more tolerable and less like instant death for vampires. Since you run the risk of damaging the window if you keep the interior shade up when the sun is hitting it, we figure having this will make our time with Lola more enjoyable. In addition, it will be a good preventative measure for when friends borrow her and are tempted to keep the shade closed. A good purchase.

We are in countdown mode to summer and have just two more weekends before we head out for a much needed extended trip. We have an awfully nice itinerary planned and I am impressed with how much we were able to pull together in a fairly short timeframe. And along those lines, it is crunch time to get all the things done before launch. Exciting!

Total miles: 125.7, 15.6 mpg, 3 hours 25 minutes. Pretty good LTE and ok campground wifi. Hookups. Riverfront site with shade except in the afternoon. Steep scramble down to the water, but doable. Richard hates the dump so we dump at Brannan Island on our way home.

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