After last night we will always have a plan B and maybe even a plan C in place! Our plan today was to travel north to the Haw Creek Falls campground in the Ozark National Forest. The website said it was closed. I called the ranger station to verify this information and she said oh no the park is NOT closed and we were welcome to camp there. We were so happy to hear that because the place looked amazing! I thought it would be best we take the scenic route and on we traveled! Well that scenic route was quite exciting…..every few miles signs warned us that the road was going to be very crooked and steep! It took us forever just to drive a few miles due to how slow we moved going up these hills. Alison definitely could of run faster than the Rv! We would laugh at signs telling us we could only go 40 mph due to the sharp curves when we were barely hitting 20mph trying to pull our car behind us! Anyways, we finally made it to the campground and pulled into the entrance road. We did not realize the gate was CLOSED until we had already pulled off the road.
Now remember we can not just back up due to the fact we are towing our vehicle behind us. The gate said the park was closed due to area flooding. We were so upset that the lady had clearly told us the park was indeed open for us to go camping. Well it took us over an hour to slowly back out because we had to start over again and again and again. I just kept praying we would not break our trailer in this process! We finally get back on the road and decide to head north. Now where do we go? We both looked at each other hoping the other person had the perfect plan B in mind. I said let’s just drive and I’ll be looking at the map and we will go to the next campground on the map. We were headed up another hill and suddenly Ricky said why do I smell smoke!? I turn around and smoke is all inside the RV! There is no shoulder to pull off on so we had to stop right there in the middle of the road! Of course I am freaking out thinking I have 10 seconds to grab all the kids at once and throw them outside into the grass and hopefully not off the mountain. Ricky quickly circled around the RV making sure there was not a fire. I am on the phone with 911 asking if they can send road service to help us. They basically say we are in the middle of nowhere and it would take awhile….I’m thinking okay, this is fun! We find out that transmission fluid is leaking. Ricky decides the only way we can get the RV to make it up all these steep hills is to detach the car and have me follow behind him in it. After another hour passes getting everything situated and making sure the RV is safe to drive, we continue on. We still are not sure where to go but want to get somewhere soon. We ended up pulling over at an Ozark Mountain Overlook and Rest Area for the night. I remembered passing it a few hours before wishing it was daylight so we could enjoy the view. I told Ricky see God knew I really wanted to see this outlook….now I get to enjoy it in the morning! He gave me a crazy look like that was the last thing he wanted to hear after all we had jusy gone through! I said Hey I’m just trying to think of something positive here! Our marriage definitely had several “growth” moments during the stress of things going wrong. 🙂 Thankfully we were able to end our night laughing about everything that had happened. Then we remember we don’t have any running water since we were planning on filling up at the campground….at least we do have water bottles to drink! It’s okay, I was too tired to bathe the kids anyways. 😉 We are grateful to God for keeping us safe and that everything is okay! (Well, we are praying our RV is okay after all that strain on the engine!) The kids said they can not wait to write in their journals about everything that happened tonight! We were able to talk to the kids about how there will always be days that do not go as planned. We can not control and keep frustrations from happening but we can control how we respond to them. Our day may have ended not so well but look at this breathtaking view we were able to wake up to this morning! Our hearts are FULL!