Look Mom, More Corn – Full-Time RVers in Nebraska

Carhenge Nebraska Full Time RV

Look, there’s a cornfield.

Oh, there goes another one.

How many cornfields could there possibly be?

Do we really need this much corn?

Apparently, yes.

I also drove the Gypsy Hauler for the first time too! I was surprised at how not scary it was to drive nearly 60 feet of vehicle!

And with cornfields, comes great responsibility. The responsibility to wear a cornhusk on your head while running around a gas station parking lot yelling “Go Big Red!”

But, before we could even make it to Nebraska, we had to travel through Iowa and Kansas. Guess what we had to replace? The other tires. All of them. We purchased a total of 5 tires in 4 days to start the trip. Two different technicians told us they believed the tires were faulty. A piece inside completely stripped out just like the first one. After spending 3 hours at a truck stop in Iowa, we were finally on the road again (cue the Willie Nelson soundtrack).

We didn’t make it too far before crossing the Nebraska state line, home of the Lewis and Clark Expedition Welcome Center. We try to stop at most of the welcome centers and this is one of the most unique ones I’ve ever seen. With interactive displays and replicas of items that would have been found on the Lewis and Clark Expedition, the welcome center was both interactive and educational.

One of our stops in Nebraska was a little town called Gothenburg, home of one of the original Pony Express Stations. We had to make a slight detour off the interstate to get there, but it was well worth it. While this is not the original location of the building, the building itself was a Pony Express stop. It used to be 2 stories tall, but as the years went on and the building deteriorated, they moved just the top portion to this new location for restoration. Many artifacts from the Pony Express era are located in the building including this entertaining job advertisement poster.

The other stop was a highlight for me. I found this place online one day on RoadsideAmerica.com (an awesome website for random, kitschy tourist stops across America).

Behold the glory of Carhenge. This stop is a complete gem. It is a complete replica of Stonehenge built out of cars. And only American cars are allowed. There’s a graveyard in the back for a few cars that were non-American made. These cars were taken to their death and received a gravestone, but not until one of them was paraded through the town in a funeral procession first.

For my RV friends out there – here’s a review of Grand Island KOA in Nebraska. While we only stayed here for one night, it is definitely a nice little area I wouldn’t mind coming back to. It doesn’t seem like there is much to do in the area and we were simply passing through so I can’t speak to the surrounding activities. We pulled in at 8:00pm and left the next morning around 6:00am. We pulled in just in time to order a pizza with campsite delivery service – definitely a plus! I wasn’t actually able to enjoy the pizza as there are no gluten free options, but my parents definitely benefited from this park amenity. This was a huge plus as there is not much around the park other than cornfields.

There were 2 shower areas, but I was only able to make my way to one because we were there so briefly. The shower had the best water pressure I’ve ever had at an RV park and the water was so hot I couldn’t turn the heat all the way up! The showerhead was even adjustable with different massage levels. This was probably one of the best bathhouse shower facilities I’ve ever seen.

For those with kids or dogs, there is a pet walk area and a playground for the kids. As well as pool for everyone. It was gorgeous at night as the sunset over the cornfields and the lightning bugs came to life. They danced everywhere through the night. I ended up not getting much sleep as I stayed up way too late watching the lightning bugs chase each other around.

The staff was incredibly friendly and provided a golf cart escort to our site to ensure we fit properly and had the proper placement on our site. They even made sure to take our pizza order before we drove our camper to our site as we arrived right before the pizza shop was closing. They made sure to let us know that before even getting us checked in.

All in all, Grand Island KOA is a nice RV park for passing through Nebraska or for a nice peaceful getaway. I would return to this campground for some relaxing time in the country.

Oh, and we’ve never seen a water hook up like the above before. (Update: apparently, it is a mid-West thing as our next campground had this kind of water hookup, too.)

Full-Time RVers – Day 2 (and 3) in the Books

Day 2 was officially as exhausting as Day 1, but we’ll get through the long drives by the end of this week. We drove from Noccalula Falls, Alabama to St. Louis, Missouri/Illinois, but it didn’t start off without fanfare. We woke up early, got ready to drive out, and discovered a bubble in our tire. After a 4 hour delay and service coming out to change our faulty tire, we were finally on the road (you can read more about that here including a review of our awesome service).

We went through a few new states (yay RV stickers!) and finally made it to our campsite in St. Louis by about 9:00pm. We pulled into a gorgeous view of the Gateway Arch at sunset from our campsite. Along the way, we saw true America in the Farmlands. Just look at the gorgeous expansiveness of our beautiful country.

After unhooking and getting the RV set up, we ventured out to find some food and came across a great little place called Bailey’s Range. I wish I took more pictures, but we were so hungry, I didn’t even think to take pictures of the food before we ate. I did manage to snag a photo of the amazing old window wall they have separating the dining room from the kitchen. The food was SO fresh. They’re known for their boozy milkshakes, but we had to pass this time because we were so tired – we could barely stay awake.

We took the day off from driving today and stayed in St. Louis. We worked from the camper all day, but now that the work day is over, we’re heading out to explore the city a bit. We’ll be back on the road tomorrow, but we’ll enjoy being parked for the night!

We were still so exhausted on our day off from driving that mid-day, I found Dad down for the count, but when you’ve high-tailed it through 8 states in 2 days – this kind of activity is to be expected. 😉

After a full day of working, we ventured out for some dinner at a great little place called The Fountain on Locust. Let me tell you, the Gluten Free options are endless and they can make almost anything on the menu in a GF option. I’ve been seriously craving a good Cuban Sandwich, but haven’t been able to find a GF version anywhere (let me tell you, I’ve been searching for months…). Well, I found it – and it was so glorious. Absolute juicy perfection and the bread didn’t even resemble normal GF bread. It was soft and toasted to a nice crispy, golden color. Mom had the non-Gluten Free Cuban and I thought mine looked so much better since it was more pressed like a traditional Cuban (but she said hers was delicious too!). Dad had the Grown Up Grilled Cheese with several kinds of cheese, apples, and ham. He loved it and the homemade potato chips.

Regular Cuban on the left with Brussels Kale as the side
Gluten Free Cuban on the right with Spicy Carrots as the side.

The real stars of the show though: The Dill Pickle Soup and the Ice Cream Martinis. The soup sounds gross, right? WRONG. So very wrong. It was one of the best things I’ve ever tasted in my life. It is a potato based soup and seems to have chunks of pickles in it, but let me tell you, it is divine and it makes me sad that Pickle Soup isn’t a more common thing.

But let’s talk about something called an Ice Cream Martini. We started with these before the meal since it was still Happy Hour (PSA: If you get there during Happy Hour, these drinks are only $6 each!!!). We tried the Grand Chocolate, the Espresso, and of course, I had to get the Grasshopper (Little Lalita, Little Lalita, Little Lalita – any Big Bang Theory fans out there?).

Followed by a quick drive around the city for a few pictures of the Arch.

You know if there’s a casino, Mom and I will find it. There’s always time for a little Roulette!

And for the fellow campers out there: a quick review of the Casino Queen RV Park.

While this park wasn’t spectacular, it provided great views of the Arch, easy access to the city, and a shuttle to the casino next door. It was a little pricy for the lack of amenities (coming in at $53/night with our Good Sam discount), but for a quick layover with easy access to downtown, it was worth it. The office is only open from 8am-4pm and doesn’t have much for sale inside, but the highlight was definitely the fountain Coke machine. There was no cable at the park even though they have cable boxes. I personally think, they should clarify this on their website. It doesn’t mention they have cable, but it does mention full hook ups including Internet. Maybe we shouldn’t have assumed cable was included in that, but we did (lesson learned). They did have a small laundry facility that worked well and we did utilize that while we were there. The view of the arch was gorgeous, especially at night during sunset, but if the park was crowded, most people wouldn’t have that view. There is a playground area as well as a nice grassy area with gazebos, picnic tables, and grills. It was interesting because one side of the park had large trees between lots and one side was strictly gravel rocks between lots. While we like the shade the trees provided, the spots on that side of the park were smaller and didn’t have a view of the arch. We opted for the other side of the park with rocks between sites so we would have a view of the Arch. WORD OF WARNING: The trains are so loud all night. There are a lot of trains going through the area and they blow their horns all night – and I mean, ALL NIGHT. Every 30-60 minutes a train would come through and they all blow their horns right there. They make your RV shake because they are so close. I sleep with a white noise machine very loud so they didn’t bother me. My parents sleep with a white noise machine too, but they don’t have theirs as loud as mine. Dad slept right through the trains, but they kept waking mom up. Come prepared with white noise or earplugs!