Mt. Lassen Trip
8 nights | 1,526 miles
1-9 July 2001
Mineral, California: We (three!) have made it to Lassen
Volcanic National Park. It has not been a very fun trip though. The weather
has been beautiful, but we are having all sorts of terrible troubles with
Goldie’s electrical system(s) and that is making for a tough go.
Everything was going along fine – we left Saturday morning from Beaverton –
until we crossed over the California border and fridge started beeping –
letting us know it wasn’t getting propane. I knew we had gallons and gallons
of propane and wasn’t really worried. I shut the power off to the fridge, as
we were stopping in Weed for the night in just a few miles.
After checking in to our campsite, we realized Goldie had something serious
going on! First, the hydraulic jacks (our leveling system) would not go
down. Next, the slide-room went out about eight inches and ground to a halt.
We were getting no power from the “house” batteries! This meant, somehow,
our batteries were not getting a charge from the engine while we were
driving. We did a few tests and phoned the 24/7/365 Holiday Rambler
toll-free tech number and a tech returned our call in about 2 minutes. He
suggested a few things we could try and suggested a few things that could be
wrong with the coach.
These new motor homes have incredibly complex electrical systems. They can
have house batteries, batteries fro the engine, converters, inverters,
generators, solar panels and then, of course, you can plug the entire mess
into a 15, 20, 30 or 50-amp box at your campsite. Unfortunately for us –
Goldie has ALL of the above systems, plus… just to make things even MORE
complicated… we added a gigantic surge protector to monitor the
So much for the “relaxing RV lifestyle”.
Just to make for a fun evening, about an hour after dinner I began to “feel
poorly”. Since I made the meal myself, I hesitate here to say I had food
poisoning – and since Dave and Lisa had the same meal with no “symptoms”, I
can only surmise that Goldie was channeling her pain through me – after I
lost my dinner Goldie’s batteries charged back up and both of us were back
However, the same problems persisted – only for the motor home, I am fine –
and we had the same problems when we arrived at
National Park. Once again, a Holiday Rambler tech talked us through
getting our jacks down, our slide out and helped with a way to get our
battery charged up again quickly. A few things – the TV, washer/dryer and
micro/convection oven only will run on shore power, so we can do laundry,
watch Sex & The City and micro-wave popcorn at the same time! The
batteries are charging and we will be fine. Still, something is wrong and we
must get it fixed. This will be difficult as we are in the middle of nowhere
and when we return to somewhere it will be The 4th of July.
It is quite lovely here and peaceful – and very, very warm – nearly 90
today. Our campsite is completely surrounded by huge pines – with strategic
openings perfect for satellite reception – so we are in the shade.