We left Deer Park RV Park & Campground in Buffalo, WY by 11 AM on Saturday and traveled northwest along I-90 until we got to Sheridan, WY.
We stopped at the Super Walmart in Sheridan because we needed to stock up again on a few grocery items. We left the generator running so the A/C would keep the Coach cool while I went in for a quick shopping spree.
As we were leaving the parking lot, I noticed a Verizon store. I mentioned earlier that our Verizon Jetpack stopped taking a charge. Sometimes, if I wiggled the connector just right, it would start charging again, but it was becoming annoying. So we maneuvered the Coach with the truck hooked up into a nearby parking area (not an easy task sometimes) and I went into the store to see if they could troubleshoot the problem and maybe get a new charger cable or battery.
Half an hour later – I came back out of the Verizon store with a new Jetpack. It seems that I was eligible for an upgrade at a cost of $50 with a $50 mail-in rebate. That sounds good right? But, in the fine print is an additional $40 activation fee that will be added to my next bill.
For those of you not familiar with the Verizon Jetpack; it provides us with a wifi hotspot so we can connect our laptop, iPads, or iPhones to the internet. We also have AT&T on the iPhones with hotspot capability, but often-times it’s best to have a couple options for connectivity, i.e., AT&T and Verizon to get the best coverage while on the road. We originally were on a plan with a reseller, named Millenicom, for about $90 a month but Verizon bought them out so we’ve been on a Verizon 20GB plan for around $100 a month since early this year. With the new Jetpack, it looks like I get to continue with the same plan but I incurred a new 2yr contract obligation.
We continued on I-90 until we reached the town of Ranchester where we got on the Bighorn Scenic Hwy 14 to head towards Yellowstone NP. What a beautiful pass! It was quite a long, steep grade going up – but the Coach did fine. The engine water temperature reached 210 a couple times, but I manually punched in a lower gear on the Allison shift panel to keep the RPMs up. I also pulled off into a couple of the scenic turnouts to idle a bit while it cooled down. The engine normally runs around 195-200 according to my ScanGauge-D Vehicle Monitor. The engine brake performed awesome coming back down the pass into scenic Shell Canyon and past Shell Falls. I don’t think I want to go back on this same route due to the long, steep grades.
And here we are, at Shell Campground in Shell, Wy. We traveled 115 miles for the day. And we’re located almost exactly 120 miles from the east entrance to Yellowstone NP according to the camp host. This campground is $36.75 per night with full hook-ups but only 30 Amp power. The internet is very slow and there’s no cell phone signal here 🙁 But it’s a nice campground with a very nice host that gave us quite a few tips on traveling in and around Yellowstone.
Authors Note: I couldn’t upload any more pics today due to the slow internet.. I’ll edit this post tomorrow and add some pics once we get coverage again. Stay tuned…
Updated with pics on 26 July @ 3:30 PM.