Indiana’s Madison County Winery

Sher and I found another winery to visit north of the place where we were having our big yard sale. The Madison County Winery is, for sure, in the country. In fact without our phone navigation app I doubt I could have found it!

The winery building is a great facility, and it was set up for safe tasting with all the COVID shields.  We tasted several wines, including a couple of blueberry wines, including Blueberry Moscato. They also have one very different wine, a Chocolate Covered Pear Wine. Interesting, but not our favorite.  We ended up buying a bottle of Blueberry wine, and we also got a large Blueberry Moscato slushy to go.

Store and tasting room

This large farm site has not only vineyards, but also an RV park. Local complaints about of all things smoke from their outdoor firepits  have shut down the RV park until permitting is completed. Outdoor concerts are planned, and we look forward to visiting again when we can catch a concert,  enjoy some wine and stayover in our RV.

A goose on the lake

If you have been following Roadtirement, you know we have been getting out of the house and going to some RV parks to get away from our COVID-19 “isolation”. We went back to the Thousand Trails Indian Lakes campground in Batesville.

Calm lake view

This park has great paved roads for bicycle riding, and there are no large hills that are hard to climb. The pretty scenery also is nice for walks. It is nice to get away in our motorhome and to know that we are in a safe environment. Having our own self contained “house on wheels” means we do not have to use public facilities at all.

It has been reported that RV sales are booming as many have discovered the having your own facilities is safest during the coronavirus pandemic. We talked (at a safe distance of course) to a fellow who had just bought an new motorhome so he and his wife could travel safely. They were on their first time out with their new rig.

Stay safe as you start to get back out, friends, stay safe!

Wild looking critter

I had just got back from my morning walk and was sitting outside at the table enjoying a cup of coffee when I noticed something on Sher’s bike.

I have never seen a caterpillar quite like this one before. Not sure why it liked the soft plastic handlebar grips on the bike.

We are back on the road again enjoying a few days at this very nice park that is part of the Thousand Trails system. The weather is just delightful today. It was cool this morning and the temps now at mid day are in the low 70s. It is so nice that the heat has finally broken and there is a hint of fall in the air.

Back to longer stays at RV Parks

Sher and I have been pretty much staying at home, wanting to avoid that COVID-19 virus. We took a trip a few days ago and walked around in Vincennes, Indiana. We were anxious to get out and on the road again, however, and decided that we’d try out staying in an RV park see if we felt safe being in that environment.

We found what looked like a very nice park not that far from our home base. It was part of the Thousand Trails, a membership program where you pay a yearly fee and are then able to access RV Parks without any further fees.  We felt that by having only 10 nights of stays at these parks, we’d pay for the membership, anything beyond that would be no charge.

The Thousand Trails Indian Lakes Resort in Batesville, Indiana turned out to be a good choice for our first time out for a park. We had reservations, and did have to go into the gate house to get the dash board slip and the gate “key”. I would have preferred a no contact check in, but the lady did not let anyone else in while I was taking care of check in. Yes, she and I both had masks on.

We easily found an open site (sites are first come, first served). Back in on a level gravel drive with a nice shade tree. There was a concrete pad and permanent State Park style grill. The power pole and the water bib were  clear at the back of the site. It took almost all of our electric cable  to plug in, and both our water hoses.  Our T Mobile service was not very strong, but at least we could open email and access a few web pages.

A colorful sunset is a good way to end the day

We found that we felt safe at this park. We could hike around the park, and there were never so many folks that you could not keep the proper social distance. We chatted with some fellow campers, at a distance of 20 feet at least! By bringing all of the supplies we need, there was of course no need to go to any stores. We think we have found a safe way to travel, at least until there is a treatment or cure for the coronavirus. Oh yeah, we’re heading out again next week.

Cautiously getting back to traveling

I guess we had had enough of the isolation, staying at home, watching the RV sitting in the driveway and general boredom. We decided that we would venture out for a short duration trip to see what the world was like in person. Sher and I knew we could not just take off without preparation. I’m in the age and underlying health issues related group. Neither of us want to get the virus. We wanted little or no physical contact with either things and/or of course people.

Preparing the RV

We had plenty of fresh water, the gray and black water tanks were empty.  We planned our daily menus, and had more than enough food and drink on board, so there was no need to go to a store. And of course we started with a full gas tank. The RV had not been used other than a couple of day trips since we got back from Texas in February (Before COVID seems like years ago…) so we dusted the inside, put up a new shower curtain, and added a new bedspread and loaded supplies.

Roadtirement back on the road

The RV Park

We found an RV Park about 10 miles north of Vincennes, Indiana, our first destination. They accepted Passport America for half price camping. That was good. But how to interact with the office? I did not want to have to go into it. I called and the park owner completely understood my wanting a “no contact” payment. No problem, they had a mail slot at the office, great for depositing our check. The park layout also was great, as there was plenty of room between sites.

Yep, that’s us being COVID tourists


We were out and about mid week, thus avoiding what might have been large crowds on the weekends. As it turned out, there were very few people around where we walked about. We saw very few people wearing masks, which is now mandatory in Indiana. Social distancing was not really a problem, as there were only a couple of times where we moved away from nearby pedestrians.

In conclusion

We so enjoyed getting back on the road and staying in an RV Park. Sher and I both had a great time seeing the historic sites and monuments in Vincennes and then in French Lick on the second day. We do not yet feel safe going into for example any restaurants , wineries or antique shops. The frustrating part was seeing some places open and not feeling safe going in.  But, we had our own bathroom, food, and our house on wheels made for a very safe  “No Contact” outing. We’ll add some posts about the neat stuff we saw, complete with pictures soon.

Deer Ridge Camping Resort is one of Indiana’s finest

Welcome sign

Welcome sign

Nestled right off I-70 at Exit 153 the RV traveler will find a delightful campground. The Deer Ridge Camping Resort is close to Richmond in the far eastern part of the state, between Indianapolis and Columbus, Ohio.

This RV park is one of those campgrounds that immediately makes you feel at home. The owners are always there to insure that you want for nothing during your stay. With 30 years of camping under their belts, both Scott and Pat know what makes camping a fun and safe experience.

The nuts and bolts: all roads are gravel in excellent condition, sites are mostly grass with picnic tables and many fire rings are available. Layout allows for easy maneuvering for even big rigs or long fivers. All sites have water, sewer and electric. Rates are reasonable and all discount programs are honored and vets get a 15% discount.

Inviting you to a swim

Inviting you to a summer swim

Critters at the mini-golf course

Critters at the mini-golf course

Amenities include lovely playgrounds for the kids, a fun animal themed mini-golf course, large pavilion and one of the cleanest swimming pools we have ever had the pleasure to use. The main building houses a couple of pool tables, restrooms, laundry and plenty of books to read. 24 hour WiFi is on in the lounge. Within the building you will find the office/store. Also be sure to note the nostalgic decorations in the lounge. Boomers for sure will get a kick out of the collection.

Well groomed grounds

Well groomed grounds

Showers, bathrooms and pool house

Showers, bathrooms and pool house

Ice, propane and firewood are available for purchase. Scott personally delivered our firewood to our site and even threw in a pile of kindling which enabled an easy fire start. (The s’mores were great as usual!)

This campground should be on anyone’s list of stops in East Central Indiana. Scott and Pat are gracious, peaceful people who really make you feel part of the Deer Ridge family. You will enjoy your stay, be it for a night or longer. Here is the Deer Ridge website with all details.

Our very nice site near the pool.

Our very nice site near the pool.

Little Farm on the River RV Resort

Our campsite next to the Ohio River

Our campsite next to the Ohio River

Sher and I were fortunate to have a couple of days with our 10 year old granddaughter while she was on Spring Break. She wanted to camp, so I booked a night at the Little Farm on the River RV Resort. Located on the Ohio River between Lawrenceburg and Vevay, Indiana, this park is really a gem on the waters.

Little Farm RV park is divided into two seperate camping areas. One is right next to the river while the other is about 300 yards away and is the site of the office and store. There is a  great one acre catch and release fishing pond near the office. The views of the Ohio River from the river sites are up close and personal.

The staff at this park is stellar. They delivered our purchased firewood right to the firepit. Dave even threw in enough kindling pieces to insure a great fire start. My were those S’mores delicious! Our site was level and had full hook-ups. Roy is the onsite maintenance manager and is also very knowledgeable in RV service and repairs. There are very few RV issues that he can’t handle on site.

Enjoying the campfire & making S'mores

Enjoying the campfire & making S’mores

It was fun watching the coal barges on the river

It was fun watching the coal barges on the river

We chose to have a site on the river. What a treat to camp on such a quiet site. The stars were out in force, the night sounds lulled us to sleep. Another bonus of the river sites comes several times when the barge traffic passes slowly up river.

This park hosts several rallies each year. In addition there are fun activities and events scheduled around all the fair weather holidays including Halloween. Fishing Derbys are held each Saturday. Kids and adults alike will enjoy corn hole tourneys, arcades, biking and hay rides. Seems like there is always something exciting going on at the Little Farm on the River RV Park!

Reservations are suggested, please check the website here. Ask about Passport America discounts when you  make your reservation. Plan on a stay at this friendly, safe and fun RV park if your travels take you near Cincinnati,

Indianapolis or Louisville. You won’t be disappointed.

One of two large, clean bath and laundry buildings

One of two large, clean bath and laundry buildings

Check the dryer first

Yes, those are leopard sheets...

Yes, those are leopard sheets…

There is something about coming off of a long weekend festival and heading to a campground for a little rest, relaxation and doing some laundry.

The campground was nice, great roads, only 15 bucks with the Passport America discount and the laundry was only about seven sites away. Ok, it was small, two washers and two dryers. One dryer had an “Out of order: does not spin” sign on the door with the coin slots taped shut. Ok, I got that. A couple of loads won’t be bad, waiting for the one dryer.

Two loads started, no sweat. First load into the dryer: coins in, heat level set for high, start buton pushed. Well, 30 minutes later the laundry is still wet. Long story short, this dryer had no trouble spining. It just didn’t provide any heat. The result was turning the Four Winds 22E into a clothes line.

When checking out that campground laundry, check the dryers first.

Tom Raper RV is now a Camping World dealer

Our Four Winds with the new cargo trailer

Our Four Winds with the new cargo trailer

Sher and I bought our Thor Four Winds class C motorhome from Tom Raper RV in Richmond, Indiana in December of 2014. We got a great deal, were treated well and very satisfied with the transaction. Tom Raper has been in the RV business for decades and most in the Midwest recognize ads for Exit 149A on I-70 in Richmond.

I was surprised when I went to the Tom Raper website in the search for a cargo trailer and bam! there was the Camping World website! The deal was reported back in January by media. Sadly media also reported that founder Tom Raper passed away this April in Florida. Tom Raper RV is now a Camping World dealer.

We got another great deal on a cargo trailer, working with Mitch Crowe, our salesman from the Thor Four Winds deal. Once again Mitch took great care of us. Within a couple of hours we had purchased the trailer, had it correctly hitched to our motorhome and were on our way.

We went to Michigan to get some merchandise to sell at upcoming festivals and shows. The pesky April weather was chilly, and our furnace in the Thor would not work. Heading back south we detoured to the Tom Raper/CW dealership. Long story short, the service department with no hassel found the problem (a bad contact in the thermostat) and even took care of a couple of other minor issues. Hats off to technician Steve and Hank and Paul at the service desk.

I have talked to several Tom Raper employees from the sales, parts and service departments. All said they were pleased with the transition from Tom Raper to Camping World. This change sems to be a good thing for not only the staff but also the customers of this dealership. I was very pleased with the way they took care of our furnace issue and the help with the other minor issues.

Knightstown, Indiana Jellystone Park resort

Yogi greets you as you enter the RV Park

Yogi greets you as you enter the RV Park

This park, one of a chain of camping resorts themed to the Jellystone Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters, is located on I-70 between Indianapolis and Richmond. Exit 115 will take you to the park which can be seen from the interstate.

The Jellystone Park staff organizes many activities for kids of all ages. Seasonal themed events are often offered. The pool provides a nice summer break from the heat. If you want to wet a line, the fishing lake is well kept and well stocked. For a modest fee Yogi Bear himself will come to your site and tuck in the kids.

The facility is easy to negotiate with wide interior roads. Among the 130 sites there are several full hook-up pull through sites and a separate tent camping area for those who prefer a more primitive experience. The Comfort Station is immaculate and is large enough to handle a near capacity crowd.

Check the Knightstown Jellystone Park website for details. Be sure to notice the many specials that are listed. This campground has many different ways to offer its clientele reduced rates for seasonal campers and group camping.

This was one of the first campgrounds that we used back when we had our little Starcraft. It is kid and family friendly.