Natchez Trace and the Blues

Do you know about the Worlds Longest Yardsale? It starts (or ends, depending on your direction) in Gadsden Alabama and stretches to Hudson, Michigan. That’s right. Michigan! I’ve been on it off and on for several years.  I love it. I always find the best things. This year I was going to go and take a few friends with me but the blues have gotten the best of me and I don’t feel up to it. I’ll spare you the details, but if you know me personally then you know the details! I decided instead of spending all that money to travel and buy really cool stuff (wait, why I am not doing that again?) that I am going to spend 3-4 weekends spread out through August and September traveling the Natchez Trace with Whiskey.  Here is a great website/article to get you dreaming about what adventures we’ll be blogging about.

There shouldn’t be anything better to pull me out of the blues than a camping road trip right? Right. Here’s a link to info on camping on the Trace.

As far as I can see I have three obstacles in my path to a “successful” trip.

  1. Whiskey’s motion sickness
  2. He’s never camped in a tent with me
  3. Heat

My plan to combat these enemies?

  1. Not feed him a morning meal, but feed him once we are stopped to camp in the afternoon. A lot of people only feed one meal and if that’s the schedule we keep for a few days before leaving he should be fine. I’ll also take lots of breaks to sight see so it won’t feel like one big long trip.
  2. I’m just going to wing it. I’m not going to test the tent before I go. He’ll either deal or we’ll sleep in the truck (assuming it’s not blazing hot).
  3. Since we can retreat to the truck, this shouldn’t be so bad. So long as the air conditioner holds up! Also, there’s a few water type stops. We can take dips to cool off and I’ll have lots of water and ice in the cooler to help out. I may be stupidly wrong on this account since I’ve seen him give out twice because of the heat but I want to try. We won’t be hiking like we were when he gave out. We’ll be sight seeing and driving. It is a National Parkway after all.

But I will say I’ve always wanted to backpack the parkway. I think it would be fun, and a lot less crowded than the AT. Even though it’s mostly road ways, there is so much to see there that I think it would be awesome.

In general conversation with my mom about the complications of traveling with the dog I was able to express my frustration about the throwing up bit. Whiskey is a lot better. We learned not to feed him before or during. He’s learned to control it a little better. But really, only in my truck. It’s a small truck, with a tiny little “extended” cab. I say “extended” because that’s a bit of exaggeration. It’s a bench for a midget back there which is perfect for Whiskey. It’s his size. It’s “do you weight 70lbs or less” sized. But in B’s car- The Element, Whiskey wanders about. Throwing up at his leisure. We believe he gets sick more in there because he can run around in the empty space afforded him where he’s confined in the back of mine. That running about does him no favors. So my mom made this awesome fantastic this is why you have family type offer that I could not refuse. She offered to help us afford to buy some sort of contraption to keep Whiskey contained (and hopefully reduce his car sickness) in the Element. I look forward to telling you what we chose. There are seat belt harnesses, crates, gates and other types of contraptions. It’s going to be fun. And they can get kind of pricey but with her help we can afford to deck out the Element and actually take our WHOLE family on trips without wondering how we are going to keep our luggage dry in the back of my truck!

Okay, another random thing… On a weekend fun update- we went back to Garden City River Park today and swam. We met Trinity, a great dane who Whiskey really played well with. Can’t wait to meet her at the dog park off leash. They have the same play style- run like crazy and run into you. I still remember the first time he saw a great dane and was scared, flattening out like a cat stalking game. It was the funniest thing ever. You could tell he wanted to know “What the heck is that thing!!!???” lol.

So I had this great idea of getting some of my rope used for hanging my bear bag when backpacking and creating an attachment to his collar to give him about 40-50 feet of roaming ground. It…kind…of…worked. Mostly it did this… (note the tangled mess in my hands).  I’m not giving up on this idea yet. I’m going to keep working on it! Jennie wanted me to just let him go… but I’m to terrified of all the “this husky ended up in the pound/rescue because they didn’t keep him leashed/fenced” stories. Maybe one day.

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