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Into the Storm

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tbutler

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The Weather Channel is busy hunting severe storms. I am watching for their vehicles, when I spot them I'm headed in the opposite direction.

Today we left Wichita, Kansas headed for Kansas City. Spring storm season is in full swing in the mid-west and the Weather Channel is making the best of it, pursuing storms across the very area we are traveling. The forecast for the whole trip was highlighted in red on the weather map. I told Louise that an early start was in order as the afternoon promised storms. So we were hooked up and on our way early. The trip was uneventful, I kept watching the skies and the clouds were small scattered cumulus. Driving on I-35, I could watch the cloud shadows zip across the highway and noticed that the leading edges were moving northward almost as fast as we were traveling. The warm air pipeline was really working hard today! We had a nice tailwind! We stopped in Emporia to pick up just enough diesel to make it to the Flying J on I-435 on the east side of KC. Why not fill up in Emporia? The price of diesel there was $2.19 per gallon and the price at the KC station was $1.99. Since it was on the way, I'll purchase most of my fuel there. It turned out the price had gone up by 2 cents by the time we got to the KC station but it was still a bargain. Pumping almost 100 gallons we saved $17.00 by making our major purchase at the KC station. Thank you internet!

We arrived at the Flying J in Kansas City about 1:00 p.m. The pumps for car diesel are inaccessible for RV's so we went to the truck pumps. This made the fill-up faster because of those great big nozzles! Leaving the Flying J, we were driving into turbulent skies. Are those trucks from the Weather Channel? We made it about 7 miles north and just off the interstate highway before the rain started. When it started raining, it came in sheets. We went through hail and more heavy rain. We could hardly see the sign for the campground. It was only the last five or six miles that were stormy out of a trip of 225 miles. Still that experience dominates everything else for the day.

When we finally found Smith's Fork Park Campground, the campground host came out to greet us in full rain gear! We invited him in because we weren't going out in this downpour. He gave us the layout of the campground and told us which sites were reserved and where we would find the 50 amp hookups. He also cautioned us about the drop off on the left turn corner ahead! Good information to have in a rainstorm.

We found a campsite and pulled in, shut down the engine and relaxed back into the couch and recliner. I told Louise that I was glad we had a motor home, all our conveniences were right here for us. We didn't have to run outside to our home. We didn't even have to put out slides, there is plenty of room to move around. I started up my computer to check on the storm status. The Weather Bug gave me all the warning and watches, there were severe thunderstorm warnings, tornado watches, flood watches and flash flood warnings! The thunderstorms were lined up and heading our way our way like cars on a train. We just relaxed and enjoyed the show, lightening, thunder, flooded campground, a river flowing down an embankment from athletic fields to our north.

By 4:00 p.m. the campground host was around to collect the rent! We had neighbors who had pulled in behind us and our toad was keeping them from moving forward. These sites are loops of the main drive, one loop after another. The exit for one is the entrance for the next. Their door was right by a mini-lake! We moved forward then put out our slides and hooked up the water. I would wait for the sewer connection until the weather was better. No rush there, our tanks last for days. Later our neighbors moved out to join friends in a different spot. Oh, well, we didn't have to move to let them off their site.

The storms have passed off to the south and things are quiet now. The forecast for the next few days is sunny and cool. Ideal weather for relaxing in a nice campsite.

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