After a year of waiting, it was finally time to pull up stakes and head out to the Merritt Mountain Music Festival, in Merritt, BC.
This year the headliners included the Judds, Hank Williams Jr, The Wilkinsons, Dierks Bentley, Sugarland, Sara Evans, and many many more. The Brent Lee Band did not make it this year, but we had one of the beer garden acts 'Lester' camped with us in the campground. He's up for an aboriginal people's choice award, and you can vote on his link above.
But I digress.I headed out from home with the camper on the truck on Tuesday. I visited a buddy in Revelstoke on the way through, then stocked up on groceries and supplies in Kamloops.
I was looking for a quiet spot to spend the night, knowing the next few nights were likely to be anything but quiet!
So I avoided he Coquihalla highway leading out of Kamloops, and instead took the old highway 5.
Sure enough, I located a quiet little lakeside spot to spend the night, even if it was a bit too close to the road.
It was windy at night, but nice and calm in the morning, and I spent some time watching a pair of loons on the water, as well as a vocal bald eagle who surveyed the scene from an old snag on the shoreline. Something like a sparrowhawk was also patrolling the area.
Wednesday it was on into Merritt, where I filled up some 5 gal jugs with water to use for our camp shower. I found most of my usual camping group all set up and ready to party.
I leveled the camper and set up the wire fence around the truck so that Harley would have a shady place to roam and keep an eye on all the action.
Turns out, there would have been room for the new 5th wheel, but the camper works just fine and is a 'veteran' of several past festivals and was certainly cheaper to haul about. The new truck is performing flawlessly and motors up the Roger's Pass and Coquihalla hills at 1500 rpm without even downshifting! Impressive.
It was not long before the traditional jello shooters were being served up!Several times I hiked up the hill to the former site of 'tent city' to survey the area of our campground and the main stage area. Because of a new format, attendance appeared to be way down from past years? Time will tell if the higher prices will make up the difference.
The campground gradually filled over the next couple days, but never got full even on Saturday.
As is my custom, I pulled up stakes (and fencing) and headed out for home on Sunday, unfortunately missing acts such as George Fox and Sara Evans :(
Harley was glad to get back on the road again, and we were both glad for a little bit of peace and quiet after fairly continuous music and action for 5 days.
I'd like to thank Mastercard for suspending my credit card for noticing that I had 'purchasing fuel at Petro Canada', which they thought was a sure sign that my card must have been stolen? Huh? Fortunately, my home voip phone e-mailed me the voice mail, so I suspected something was amiss before I tried to use the card. What bugged me was being on hold for 20 minutes with their security department before I gave up on the first call.
I fuelled up at the new Flying J outside Kamloops and finally got through to MC who dutifully reinstated my card!
The fire trucks went whipping past me just out of town, and it looked like a grass fire was out of control along the highway. It was very windy, but I guess they got it under control as I did not hear more about it on the new later.
It was a tough 3 day work week when I got home.
Next entry - some boating on Lake Minnewanka - and another trip out to the homestead!