Welp, here we go! Today we loaded up Bumi and headed to Shippensburg, PA where Rob’s sister lives only a mile away from the trail head. This was the practice test for us to see how the car, the dogs, and us would hold up. The original plan was the take backcountry roads and break the 4 hr drive in half since we were driving at night. For the first half we’d camp at Otter Creek Campground and then complete the drive in the morning. But, you know, of course nothing goes according to plan with us.
The ride through York and the area surrounding the Susquehanna was awing. If it weren’t for the road signs you could easily get lost in the overarching trees and high grass. The skyscrapers are now replaced by silos, the cars by horse & buggy, and the people by cows (don’t mean anything by it! there are just lots of cows). Unfortunately, we don’t have any pictures because I forgot. Sorry!
When we reached the campground at 10pm it was closed so we tried finding an empty patch of land to car camp but everything was someone’s front yard. Then, we found God. Seriously, we pulled up alongside a church because our tired souls needed a rest. The hardest part of this test was trying to find a place to pee because on each side was a church, a preschool, and a graveyard.
Did Bumi pass the test?
I have discovered one of my new favorite things, coasting down hills. Philadelphia has very little in terms of hills and I am still relatively new at manual driving. Our samurai is like the little engine that could, despite the hard and slow climb to the tops of these hills, the payoff is always a blast coming down the other side. The winding roads in rural Pennsylvania have always had a place in my heart, I haven’t been out this way since we’d spend our summers camping when I was a kid.
Mechanically, the truck did about as well as I could have hoped, The tailpipe DID rust and fall off though, and I am using the time at my sisters apartment to patch the problem up.
I could not find sleep at the church parking lot and decided to just drive the next two hours through the night and hope for the best with the crazy pitch black roads. The final approach to Shippensburg through the back is over a mountain, through a state park. (we actually pass the trail head getting here.) We glided into Shippensburg coming down that mountain and found solitude with my baby sister by breaking into her house at 4 am while she sleeps.