Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Big Fun in Littleton


When last we left you we were planning one night at the Littleton Elks Lodge and a meet up with our Magnum inverter guy. One night is all we hoped to be here because once our inverter was repaired we would be on our way to Burlington, Vermont. We have really been looking forward to Burlington but as we changed our route over and over, it seemed to fall further down our itinerary.

We got ourselves parked at the Littleton Elks Lodge where we had 50 amps. We had no access to water or sewer, but we came prepared with empty holding tanks and plenty of water. Once we were plugged in, we didn't have to worry about our inverter or generator and this gave us a bit of breathing room to work on fixes

The YUGE lot behind the elks in Littleton, NH.

First things first, our generator. When we started it up while in the Cummins parking lot in Concord, we realized we had no power coming into the rig. We had no idea why but Steven set off on an adventure of a process of elimination to try and figure it out.

When we arrived at the "Koach Kare " place in Concord, the high-energy guy checking us in asked Steven to go out and get information off the generator, which I guess they needed in order to service it and he was too lazy to get the info himself. So, when Steven went out there, he couldn't see any info and so dusted off the top of the genny. In doing so, he flipped the On/Off switch to "Off". Who knew that switch even existed? We certainly didn't, but we do now! Once he flipped it back to "On", we had full power from our genny. YAY! One problem solved, one to go!

That pesky on/off switch was inadvertently turned off in mid dust-swipe.

Not long after we arrived at the Littleton Elks Lodge, the Magnum guy, John, arrived and went right to work. We had already talked with the folks at Magnum who suspected that the fans in our inverter had stopped working. John thought it might be a circuit board, but after he and Steven removed the inverter and conducted a couple of tests, it was indeed the fans that had failed. Our inverter has two fans, and John only had one, but it was enough to get us up and running again. John mailed us the second fan which Steven can change out himself at a later date. That was good news for both our inverter and our wallet. $75 later, we were good to go!

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Steven stands watch while John, our Magnum guy, does all the work.

But even with our problems solved and Burlington just a couple of hours away, we just couldn't muster the enthusiasm to pack up and go. Turns out, we were quite comfortable at the Littleton Elks Lodge and both agreed it would be nice to stay another day and explore. We were as close as we were going to get to Mt. Washington so, on the second day, we drove the famous Auto Road to the top.

It was a gorgeous, sunny day with just a few puffy clouds thrown in for interest. We paid our steep (pun intended!) entrance fee of $38 for Toadie, driver and passenger and off we went up, up, up. The average incline of the road is a steep 12 percent and over 7.5 miles we climbed 4,600 feet. The views in all directions were stunning, but the main focus was on the road and other vehicles which seemed to graze by in the opposite direction. No one was going fast, but the road was quite narrow in places. As we approached the top of the mountain we were suddenly engulfed in clouds so thick we had trouble seeing the observation deck. We did see that there was a line to get to the official summit, where folks were taking selfies. We didn't bother.

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A foggy mountaintop with a big line for the premium selfie spot.

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It looks like there was no one around judging by this shot but there were hundreds of tourists milling around.

The sun poked out for a little while to reveal the beautiful layered surrounding mountains.

The trip down was hell on Toadie's brakes, so we pulled over several times to let them cool off. We already burned up her brakes in the Sierra Nevada a couple of years ago and had to replace them, so we were careful not to repeat that episode.

Back at the Elks that evening we still weren't feeling ready to travel so we signed on for another day. This turned out to be fortuitous, as we get to tour around the cute little downtown area of Littleton.

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Littleton was such a fun town! We saw the world’s longest candy counter and pianos on the streets!

We also got to meet up with the writer of "The Lady is a Tramp", a blog I absolutely love. Tammy is a fellow fulltimer and Seattlite, and she just happened to be parked a few miles away. We connected and plans were hatched for a night on the town.

What fun we had! Cocktails, dinner, lots of laughs! And y'all, at The Beal House I had some of the best poutine I've ever eaten. Seriously, you know how I love poutine. I'm still thinking about it, so you know it had to be delicious! Anyway, we're circling around places Tammy will be staying in the coming weeks, so we hope to see her again soon in the Boston area!

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We had a blast with Tammy!

We finally packed up and headed for Burlington but instead of a full week in the area we now only had four days. We planned to make the most of it and I warned Steven, get ready to be a tourist!

And then, on our way, another warning light!! Another call to Cummins reassured us it was safe to travel, and they gave us the name of a shop we should contact just south of Burlington. We did, and then drove straight to New England Kenworth.

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The light came on and the manuals came out to try to identify that upside down bulb with the exclamation point!

We were lucky to find this huge parking lot to pull into while we stared at our manuals.

OMG, back in the shop again! Not how we imagined our Friday evening.

One of the engineers hooked up a computer to Scoopy's engine and found that she had indeed generated a code., something called an “engine speed sensor.” This was Friday afternoon and it was too late to start work on Scoopy so we made plans to return Tuesday morning for the fix. They had the part in stock so hopefully by the afternoon, we'd be on our merry way.

LOL. Y'all know that didn't happen, right?


  1. I have lost count of how many times I have hit that switch accidentially and so now that it the first thing I check when there is s problem:)

    1. I'm glad to know we're not the only ones! If there is a next time, that's where we will look first!

  2. When you were in Littleton you were in the town that our grandchildren were born in. My son and family live in Bethlehem and he has a vet hospital in Whitefield. What a lovely area that is! Small world!

    1. Yes, small world! And we agree, the area is beautiful. We are struck by the difference between southern NH and northern NH, which reminds us of our home state, Washington! We really enjoyed Littleton, too.

  3. OMG you guys! Hope the next fix is "the one" and you are done with repair shops! How nice meeting up with a fellow blogger! Looks like an awesome time was had by all!

    1. Well, it's a long story.... :) But meeting Tammy was a highlight of our stay in NH, for sure. You should check out her blog. She's an amazing writer and storyteller, and sometimes she's just laugh-out-loud funny. My kind of gal.

  4. We were just there a couple weeks ago! We were lucky and had a great sunny day, but those winds were bone chilling! How funny you met up with TLiaT! We spotted her in the campground we were in. Looks like we missed out on Littlton, what a cute place!

    1. You had much better weather at the top than we did, although I think if we had waited around a bit, it might have cleared. But one thing that didn't clear was the number of people at the top. It was one of the most touristy places we've been to on the east coast!

  5. Of course if the fake care folks had serviced the genny as scheduled they would have discovered the switch......really not liking them. Glad you had two quick fixes (my fav!) Love, love the umbrellas :-)) That view is spectacular, but that sure is a lot of people. It's awesome that your manuals are helpful, ours rarely are.

    1. Our manuals are not helpful. We were just staring at them. :( To get them, we actually had to open the bedroom slide and retrieve them from under the bed!

  6. So....what were those people taking selfies of? Themselves shrouded in fog? Dang, you guys are going to win the prize for mysterious annoying mechanical/technical stuff happening in a short period of time. (We still win the prize for the stupidest accident ever, LOL!) Glad you're having fun in the midst of it all. Better than being miserable, right?

    1. The selfie line was at the marker for the peak of Mt. Washington, which I believe is the highest on the east coast. Your accident seemed so innocent, but it took soooooo long for repairs! You kept it together, though. It's all part of the adventure! :)

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  8. Hiya. You found my home away from home. I have been to the area many times. Its central location to some of the best of the White Mts is why I love the town.

    I sat and played that piano (poorly). Like I cared. People were walking by and telling me how lovely my playing was. Um yeah.

    I am heading up next week to the Littleton Motel. $89 a night... as opposed to our other monster home away from home, the Mountain View Grand in Whitefield (bucket list)... And around $200-$300 a night or more. "Worth it" is debatable.

    This will be my 6th maybe 10th time in the area. My default vacation spot. I think this time it will be around peak foliage season.

    My wfie and I did the auto road. We had an amazing day in what is deemed a nice weather day atop the mountain. 32 degrees, 70mph sustained winds. And yeah, we got our selfie at "the summit". As you stated, the road down is remarkably scary/awesome. In one spot, I was sure we are doomed. And to boot, a year later, my Sonata died. I mean entire power train replacement. Part a recall related and part what the auto road did to the car.

    Did you miss anything? Oh yeah. As I stated, many trips. I think I have gone beyond scratching the surface of the area. I doubt I will ever see everything. Wish we had known each other because I know things in the area that are "best kept secrets".

    Happy, safe, and fun travels!

  9. I neglected to mention... you were very lucky to get to do the auto road. I had gone to the area 6 times before my "finally!!!". Each one of those 6 times, the road was closed due to the weather. I started going there in the early 80's and didn't get to do the road until 2015!