Ontonagon, MI, and Home to Hastings, Summer 2018

The Township Park and Campground in Ontonagon MI is another gem along the south shore of Lake Superior. These smaller city and county campgrounds are really nice. This is another one we have been to several times.

About half the sites right on Lake Superior.

Just a couple nights, the first day was into Ontonagon to check out the Nonesuch Shop and lunch. A wonderful shop full of mostly hand made items including spectacular quilts made by the lady who runs the store. She has a sewing machine right next to the cash register an is always making something. Her quilts are going to the International Quilt Study Center and Museum at the University of Nebraska where they can be preserved, stored and displayed. She is always fun to talk with.

Here is a link to an earlier post from the Ontonagon area.


The next day was pretty much an all day rain. I made an effort to get caught up on emails. We were watching weather reports. The next day looked like no rain, the three days after that looked like rain so we decided to push for home the next day, a 7-1/2 hour day.

A couple odd things…

Our refrigerator just shut down, no cooling. The lights were on but it was not running and getting warmer. So I called Samsung, they had me go through a couple troubleshooting steps that didn’t identify anything in particular so they had me unplug the refrigerator for two minutes and then plug it back in and set it to power cooling and power freeze. Nothing happened. About 15 minutes later it started up, got cold and life was good again. Somehow it got confused and shut down. We had to reboot it!

And then about an hour away from home our coach engine started to feel like it was missing. Almost every thing that is a problem for diesel engines is fuel related. We had just been talking to Amanda and Douglas about this very thing two nights before. So we pulled off into a Cenex truck stop. The engine has primary and secondary fuel filters and a prefilter screen. The prefilter screen looked pretty clogged up so I removed it and cleaned it as best I could (I have two new ones at home of course) and replaced that and changed the primary fuel filter (I had two with me and two more at home). I did not have a secondary filter with us so I just had to hope for good luck.

Diesel fuel is about 20% biodiesel and under certain conditions algae will grow in it. We must have picked up some less than wonderful fuel somewhere along the way and its the algae that clogs up the filters.

The prefilter screen and primary filter are easy to get at, the secondary is more difficult. All of that took 45 minutes. The engine has an air purge system for the fuel lines and filter with an electric fuel pump to pressurize the fuel system. So I pushed the button to start the air purge and turned the key to start the engine. It started right away. The instructions say to run it on high idle for three minutes. It has three idle speeds. I checked for fuel leaks, there were none. So off we went, all was well. We stopped a couple miles down the road to check for fuel leaks, none. So we just finished up the drive home.

There is a lot to learn about these coaches. You could be just stuck on the side of the road or make the effort to know how to fix what you can fix and be prepared for what you might not expect but might just happen anyway.

Be prepared, the old Boy Scout Motto applies to so many things. The right parts and tools, the right knowledge and the willingness to just get it done. I got a pat on the back from Susan and a lot of help too. We are in this together.

Where to next? Texas, Arizona and New Mexico this winter sounds good. We have to get used to being at home again first.

More later, Much Love

Roger and Susan

4 thoughts on “Ontonagon, MI, and Home to Hastings, Summer 2018”

  1. I’m no engineer, but it’s obvious to me that your mechanical difficulties were caused by the devices not being ready yet to head home.


    1. Ready or not it was time. Sometimes clogging up the filters takes a long time. Sometimes 20 miles if you really get some bad fuel. The primary filter actually looked pretty clean, the pre filter strainer looked like it was filled with black flakey bits. That was a bit of work to clean most of it out but then things ran fine.


  2. Another fine report and narrative on the joys of on the road repairs. You sound like you have had a great trip and it will be good to be home I am sure. Welcome home and hope to see you in Arizona this winter too.


  3. It’s always a treat to read your posts, Roger.

    Also, the card from both of you to my mom arrived today and she very much appreciated it. Welcome back!




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