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RV road test - Perry Lake, Perry, Kansas

6/3/2007

1980 Shasta motorhome road test.     We left around 7:00 a.m... very little traffic out that early and we had the roads to ourselves. I just eased on across town in the motorhome and tried not to hit anything. It reminded me of driving hay trucks in the summers when I was a kid in Burlington... top heavy and hard to slow down. I like driving big trucks. They're like boats. You don't drive them - you sail them. If you know what you're doing and can anticipate far enough ahead, anticipate the traffic, the signs and the lights, the turns and the lanes you need to be in, if you do all of these things correctly you can turn a drive into one long glide that sails from one point to the next. I barely touched the brakes this morning... That's how smooth it was. I had green lights all the way out of town and once we hit Highway 24 it was a straight shot to Perry Lake.

Camp site - Lake Perry, Perry, Kansas.     The main purpose of the road test was obviously to familiarize myself with the motorhome and see how it handled on the highway. I'd taken quite a bit on faith when I bought it the week before and it was time to see if my trust had been well placed. The Shasta has a 350 cubic inch V-8 motor and a three-speed automatic transmission. It's the same specs you'd see on considerably smaller trucks and it's easy to see what Chevy was going after here. A "Mini Motorhome." All the features and comforts of the larger RV's packed into the smaller sized frame of the Shasta. Pretty good idea actually.

1980 Shasta motorhome road test - 2.     The water level at Perry Lake was still abnormally high from all the flooding we'd had in this area two weeks earlier. The water had gone down far enough that the boat ramps had finally become useable and there were several boaters on the lake but aside from them we saw very few people out there, far less than there would have been on a normal spring weekend. I had intended to go to our usual camping spot but it was all but unrecognizable, the eighty foot rock shelf leading down to the water's edge having been reduced to less than ten feet by the high water. We passed on by it and I pulled in at another deserted campsite where I stopped and let the dogs out to run.

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