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Vladimir

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About Vladimir

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 09/24/1950

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  • Website URL
    http://www.usbackroads.blogspot.com
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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    eastern Washington
  • Interests
    Camping, fly fishing, bird hunting, astronomy, photography, hiking, and everything else outdoors.

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  1. The information is somewhat dated so check for current regulations. BUT, this does give you ideas on how to fish without paying high license fees. https://usbackroads.blogspot.com/2010/06/free-fishing-spots.html
  2. I just upgraded my computers from Windows 2000 to XP. Those are the ones that run the telescopes and camera’s in the observatory. As others have mentioned you need scanners and items from that era. In my case, I am not going to pay 5,000 dollars to upgrade all my equipment!!!! Windows 7 is great. I might upgrade to that soon in the observatory. I do use Windows 7 for my photography and general purpose computing. I am trying to get a refurbished computer with Windows 10, but it seems that with the pandemic the refurbished market is sold out. There are some real advantages to being behind the curve.
  3. I pay for my prescriptions out of pocket. I got my Dr. to write a prescription and have me fill the year order at one time. The prescriptions are all fairly common, nothing exceptional. Costco filled the initial prescription as a 90 day supply and I pointed out tot them I wanted the ENTIRE years supply NOW. The asked me to give them a weeks notice so they could fill my prescription. The “just in case” business model for filling prescriptions upset the apple cart!!! So yes....shortages are pretty common. I am good till December! BTW...this was THREE years before the current situation.
  4. Several years ago, I almost bought a used RV in Canada. The rub is when you take it across the border. IF I remember correctly the US wants that medallion that certifies a RV. I think most folks have seen it, but never paid attention to it. Well, that medallion does not exist on vehicles made in Canada for domestic use. IF you buy NEW, the dealer will affix the medallion and you can get across the border. I got all sorts of "good" advice on how to sneak a used RV past US Customs. I decided to confine my used purchases to the US. Anyway, check with US Customs. Since I was looking for a used or new RV I called the company that built them new....and got the complete story. All things might have changed since a decade ago.
  5. We are wandering off-topic.....but PRIVATE COMPANIES cannot set laws and regulations for the UNITED STATES. Trust me on this. As a Federal employee we have had the courts send back some of our agency decisions simply because they were concerned that "advisory" councils were making regulations and NOT Federal employees. The Federal government can use whatever data it wants in its decision making process....BUT the decision is limited to the Federal government and its "employees" that Congress designates to write the regulations. For all those folks concerned about government spending......really this is something we should be spending taxpayer dollars!!!
  6. I don't have Direct TV......but if you read the post. Regrettably, we must inform you of a new law that affects your programming. Until recently, the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act Reauthorization (STELAR) Act authorized DIRECTV to provide you access to your out-of-market broadcast networks—ABC, CBS, NBC, CW, and/or FOX. Unfortunately, Congress has decided to not renew key provisions of this law. As a result, on June 1, 2020, we no longer will be able to provide you access to these out-of-market channels. These are not available anywhere else. However, this change does not affect access to your existing local network stations. We have the "best Government money can buy". I am not sure why Congress is involved in this at ALL. Why is this a Federal matter?? In Wenatchee, my local cable system offered the "local" Spokane TV stations. Ooops, some Federal law and resulting Federal regulations made Wenatchee part of the Seattle TV market. Wenatchee is EXACTLY half way between Spokane and Seattle. It has historically been part of eastern Washington, but lately floods of urban refugees have been moving over to Wenatchee from Seattle. So the Federal government made the local cable company replace their Spokane TV stations with Seattle TV stations and the cable bill went up as a result. Even worse, the local TV station was now part of the Seattle TV market so if they purchased ANY nationally syndicated programming that have to pay Seattle rates!!! There are lots of worthwhile things that the Federal government is responsible for....as a Federal employee for 30 years I know that. WHY is CONGRESS fiddling around with TV programming in local areas and on satellite. Oh wait....I forgot...."We have the "best government money can buy". rant mode off.
  7. Governor Inslee and Washington state is special. I have spent the past 14 days in self-quarantine at my second home since I believe I was exposed to the virus in Arizona. Around my second home are "second homes" of the rich and famous. Yeah, I was country before country was cool. They are coming over from King and Snohomish Counties....the original epicenter of the outbreak in the US every two or three days. Drive over here for a couple of days. Go back to King County for a couple of days, then drive back over to Chelan County and their FIVE ICU beds. I called the Governor's Office and they were aware of the problem with 30,000 plus second home owners driving over.....It is DAY SIX since I called and nothing has been done. Even Governor Cumo in New York objected to closing the roads so the second home owners being able to leave New York...I guess after they left it was no longer his problem. It is a real problem for rural areas. Sun Valley is totally wrecked by the virus and their ONE ICU hospital bed. Yeah, they flew in on their private jets and then flew out when they got sick, but the locals DON"T have private jets. Good luck finding a place to stay if your a full-timer. Your choices are between a caring community with medical resources and toughing it out on your own in the middle of somewhere. This thing is serious. It is going hit a couple of weeks later out west than back east. See how New York goes....so goes the west two weeks later. IF we had a stay in place order that was actually enforced....(but notice in Washington state that is NOT happening) there might be a chance of slowing this thing down. For full-timers....avoid catching it at all costs. I would not be surprised if the County Sheriff starts checking ID's and asking why somebody from King and Snohomish County wants to visit Chelan County in the midst of all this.
  8. Just drove last week from the Mexican border to the Canadian border....more or less. That was interesting. So the information is somewhat dated.....From Benson to Wenatchee, basically on 93 until Idaho March 18th in Arizona. It was pretty much business as usual. Parking lot fairly full at stores and businesses. Lots of traffic on the roads. Stopped for the night at a BLM campground and it was fairly full. But it looked like lots of snowbirds were staying there rather than moving on. March 19th in Nevada. Pretty much shut down. The Governor closed all the casinos, brothels, churches and other gathering places. Highway 93 heading to Idaho had long "wagon trains" of trucks and Canadians heading home. Really surprised at the number of Canadian snowbirds that were heading north. I guess when the PM said come back home....they all started heading north. Going through Ely I was surprised to hear on the radio that the town had two cases. One case, definitely related to overseas travel. Camped on BLM land outside Alamo. Only RV there at 3:30 in the afternoon and then had 15 other rigs join me by 5:00 pm. Alamo grocery store was picked fairly clean. At Jackpot there were people that looked like they were going to boondock there at night. Casino was closed. Campground was open at that point. I decided to head into Idaho for a BLM campsite instead. Oh, driving was definitely an adventure. Almost saw a 15 vehicle RV pile-up outside of Wells!!! Did see another single vehicle that rolled off the road around Wells. I tried to stay away from everybody on the road!!! March 20th in southern Idaho. What pandemic?? Stayed at a BLM campground just a short distance above the Nevada line. It was pretty full with locals fishing and riding their quads. Traffic looked a little lighter than usual going through Boise. There are virus cases in Boise and a large cluster in Sun Valley. I guess those private jets brought it in. March 21st in north-east Oregon. Lots less traffic according to the gas station attendent (they pump your gas in Oregon). Campground I stayed in was a "resort' RV park that was pretty much empty. No contact with anybody. Just a note on the office door on which sites to take. They were staggered so that nobody was next to each other. You paid by dropping your registration and money through a mail slot. Not many people in the campground. March 22nd in Washington state, somewhat lighter traffic, not sure if that was due to a Sunday or a virus. Pretty much everything was open. Today March 26th the "shelter in place order" goes into affect in Washington state. Pretty quiet around Wenatchee. Several new cases and another death from the local extended care facility. Washington state owned public lands are ALL closed to overnight camping. Individual National Parks are also closing campgrounds and even closing overnight camping in Wilderness Areas. Not sure the status of private campgrounds. Yesterday in Washington state, the Governor FINALLY issued a shelter in place order for two weeks after several requests from the medical community. There is much less traffic on the roads. It is suppose to be essential traffic only. People are going outdoors for walking and using local trails. Hope this information, though dated, is helpful. It does give you the wide variety in response from the local state governments.
  9. Thanks for posting the link. I might pick it up when I get home. The version with the "trucker" antenna looks like it would be really handy. I hear you Kirk about the pride. But having a phone given the places I frequent is pretty handy and important.
  10. I have not found a good solution. I have used 200 feet of garden hose and a milk jug when the source was ABOVE the RV. That works really well!!! However, I have used a 12 volt "shower" pump, a submersible 12 volt pump, and a couple of other kludges. The 12 volt shower pump worked best of all, but I did not have to pump more than 10 gallons at a time. I don't drink out of tanks. I did use the 12 volt shower pump to fill a "bag" water filter set-up. I suspect there is a pretty good market for a well-designed water pumping system for RV's.
  11. Ally Bank is the former General Motors Acceptance Corporation that offered car loans for General Motors. During the last financial crises the Federal Government not only bailed out General Motors, but they decided that GMAC (Ally Bank) was really a bank and not a financing arm of General Motors. I had a car loan with Ally Bank, when I called them and told them I wanted to make a additional principal payment, they told me to compute it myself. I told them....fine. They were accepting my interest calculations and balance due. At that point, they decided that maybe they would tell me how much I was paying in interest and principal. Unlike losthikers...I have no problem with a for profit business. But this is telling.....I have THREE credit unions that I do business with an multiple accounts with each. I do NOT do business with ANY banks and have closed out and moved accounts to the credit unions ASAP when my accounts were transferred due to mergers, etc. There are great local banks in this country. There are NO great Wall Street or national banks. But why take a chance...get a credit union account.
  12. Mobility....the definition varies according to activity. Early in my career, I supervised a couple of interpretive naturalists. We organized a set of "handicapped" tours using the local Boy Scout troop and Forest Service resources. Our tours went through "swamps", but today's term is wetlands. They are still cool no matter what you call them. My surprise was the number of Vietnam vet's with war wounds that made it difficult for them to walk. Canoeing, however, took advantage of their upper body strength and suddenly they were no longer "handicapped". The letters were most gratifying and opened a view on "mobility" that changed as a result. Mobility...canoes, electric bicycles, tri-cycles both electric and non-electric, motorized wheel chairs, wheel chairs for trails, and it keeps going.......define your mobility issues and then look at how you can overcome them. A raft trip down the Middle Fork of the Salmon has been on my bucket list for 50 years. I am saving it for my later years, when I have mobility issues.
  13. Hey, thanks for that information. I was totally clueless about "high value loads". Hmmm, maybe next time....a Wal-Mart driver?? But seriously...thanks for the info....it never crossed my mind. I must confess, particularly on two lane highways I will always drive behind a semi. Living in rural areas, there is not much survivability in a head-on-crash. Nobody, wants to have a head-on with a semi....a car seems so much safer to them.
  14. Ok, serious question..... Going down I-5 your going to have somebody tailing you ALL THE WAY to LA. So why wouldn't you prefer to have ONE vehicle behind you, instead of a different vehicle every couple of minutes?? I understand the need to see people behind you. I try to stay far enough back that the truck can see me AND most importantly I can stop before I meet the vehicle in front of me. Really, when you come down to it most folks driving cars do NOT realize how long it takes to stop a semi or RV. I was almost killed by a semi that did NOT notice my left turn signal on a two lane highway. I don't know if he was on the phone or fiddling with the radio, but I quickly turned right into the ditch and he had his brakes locked and smoking and finally came to a stop about a 1/4 mile from me. I was mad as hell at him, but since I was driving a government vehicle I thought it probably was not a good idea to drive down to him and start discussing highway safety with him. There is no reason not to drive safely. Just today between Yuma and Tucson it was interesting.
  15. Yeah, I know that....I tried to stay as far back as possible and in position where he could see me in his mirrors. But I-5 is such a straight shot that you really do need to wig and wag to check on traffic behind you. The issue is unless traffic dictates I really didn't want people pulling constantly between him and me. After all it was I-5, but a fairly light traffic day. I did drop back whenever I thought a semi or larger rig really did need to pull in between us. Only happened once in the 150 plus miles!! A friend of mine did it with his Camry and drafted a truck for several hundred miles. They both pulled off at the same exit and the trucker walked over asked him if my friend was going to buy him lunch with all the gas money he saved drafting the truck. Oh, I forgot I got plenty of warning on potholes and bumps on the road surface when he tried to avoid them.
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