Motorhome Experiences of Lyle Dean and Judy Lebsack

To our families and friends,

We’ve been blessed to experience multiple trips of a “lifetime” on the waters of our country, including the Great Loop—from Chicago to Florida and back.  My late wife, Sharon, and I used that term “trip of a lifetime” not knowing she would contract leukemia only a few years later.   Along the way, we adopted the slogan, “do it when and while you can.”  That was the result of people telling us they wished they had done it while they were young and/or able.  The young part may have passed me by, but still able.

My now wife, Judy, experienced several major trips with me by boat on the Great Lakes, then (by motor home) several lengthy trips into Canada and various parts of the U.S.  Each had the feeling of a once-in-a-lifetime experience, yet we looked forward to more exploring these great scenic wonders in our countries.  We’ve passed up several opportunities to travel with friends by other means so that we can make use of the motor home while we are able. 

The latest motor home opportunity came recently when the Newmar RV owners club announced a caravan to Alaska in the summer of 2019.  Like most Newmar club caravans, costs were comparatively reasonable, but what peaked our interest was the two couples making all the arrangements and reservations for the Alaska caravan were hosts on our two previous Newmar caravans.  We felt comfortable with them on such a long (six week) trip with twenty motor homes. 

So, we signed up!  We need to be in Edmonton on June 1st for the beginning of the caravan.  The trip to Edmonton, itself, is five days from SW Michigan.  The caravan ends in Fairbanks on July 14, so getting home will be about two weeks more.  In all, the Alaska caravan, plus to and from, will last slightly longer than two months!  Another trip of a lifetime!  We are excited!  Several significant events occur during the caravan--our 5th wedding anniversary and my 80th!

The caravan goes from Edmonton through British Columbia and Yukon Territory.  Our first stop in Alaska is Skagway, then back to the Yukon for a few more days before stopping in Tok, Alaska.  After that, Valdez, Palmer, Seward, Homer, Anchorage, Denali and Fairbanks.  We’ll keep you updated via as the cell services permit.

April 17, 2019

Making preparations for departure, including two days at Cummins service in Ft. Myers, then two days at an RV service facility we've come to trust.  Moving the gas grill and smoker to the garage in our Ft. Myers condo for the summer, Arranging and maximizing storage in the basement of the motor home. 

April 26, 2019 

On our way in the company of millions of lovebugs.  Judy is following in the car.  By North Central Florida the rains started and pretty much never ended during our trip back to Berrien Springs Shamrock RV park, where road construction at the entrance left us with a precarious and muddy detour to get parked.  We had several nice stops on the way north--Fayetteville, AR to see Judy's daughter-in-law, Sally and grandchildren, Ethan, Lauren and Matthew.  We also made a "pilgrimage" to Das Deutsch Essenhaus in Middlebury, IN for their wonderful comfort food.