January 25, 2010. This mornings temps were in the low 60’s with a bright sunny sky. It warmed to the high 60’s.
I met Ranger Dylan Shoemaker around 9:00 in the park. He had towed a gas powered lift from Stephan Foster. Dylan wanted to make the bat house more noticeable by fastening a BAT CROSSING sign on the bat house in the Big Shoals loop. I believe the bat house is occupied by Brazilian Free Tail Bats and possibly Evening Bats. Dylan showed me how to operate the lift and together we got the sign installed. I then got off the lift and took some photos of Dylan on the lift.
Dylan knew I was planning on cleaning the roof of our Carriage fifth wheel. He offered the lift to assist with that chore.
Dylan had a guided interpretive tour to give in the park along with a hike to The Big Shoals. So while he was working on that, Joyce helped me as I cleaned the roof of our rig. I started by blowing off leaves with a gas blower. I used a bucket of water and Dawn dish washing soap along with a stiff brush to scrub the roof.
I forgot to take “before” pictures. Joyce went up on the lift and took some “after” pictures. I can tell you the roof was blotchy with dirt/ mildew giving it a greyish hue. The Dawn Dishwashing Soap did a very good job on our vinyl TPO roof. Dawn Dishwashing Soap is recommended by Carriage and the roof material manufacturer.
After cleaning the roof, I finished by cleaning the entire outside of the rig. We both think it looked brand new after we were done.
After cleaning up and loading up the lift. I traveled to Stephan Foster to pick up the park’s brush fire truck. Dylan had asked me to take it to Lake City for a 2:30 appointment at a tire shop. Dylan was expecting to be busy with the park tour. The brush fire truck needed a spare tire exchanged.
The truck is used by the Park Service for use on controlled forest/ brush burns. It carries 300 gallons of water. Dylan had used it last week at Oleno State Park when he assisted with their forest burns. I thought it unfortunate that although the truck only has 15K miles on it, the Park Service has already replaced 4-5 of the 19.5 inch tires as they have been blowing out or suffer side wall cuts. The tires are expensive and heavy. It was a chore getting the spare down and then back up on the very top of the truck.
I was back to Stephan Foster by 4:00 and home by 4:30. I caught up with Dylan when he stopped by our rig. He will be off for the next 6 days. When he starts back to work we plan on hitching up and moving on. We are looking forward to moving on and continuing our adventure.