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Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750786
July 20th 2019 6:54 pm
July 20th 2019 6:54 pm
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
Dyno_Dave Offline OP
pooh-bah
Dyno_Dave  Offline OP
pooh-bah
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
It's been a working summer for The Express.

My sons truck suffered a catastrophic engine failure, and had to be replaced by a new vehicle. Replacement secured, we hitched the van up to the aluminum car hauler again, and headed south.

Along the way, we crested the 100k mile mark, rolling right along, and running better than ever.

[Linked Image]

Once there, we had some extra time to visit with our son. This included a little light hiking through Giant City with the wife (stayed in the same park as last trip, parked in the same spot.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

The trip home always includes a stop at the Blue Hat in Coldwater for coffee.

[Linked Image]

AdSense long
Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750787
July 20th 2019 6:57 pm
July 20th 2019 6:57 pm
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
Dyno_Dave Offline OP
pooh-bah
Dyno_Dave  Offline OP
pooh-bah
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
The following month, we took The Express to Cincinnati for a family gathering. Nothing better for road trips. Unfortunately, the a/c slowly stopped working on the way down. I topped off the system while I was there, and was able to get it working for the drive home, but it's clearly a large leak, as it was again going flat before we made Detroit. I did make it to a swapmeet while I was there, and picked up a few nick-nacks.

Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750788
July 20th 2019 7:41 pm
July 20th 2019 7:41 pm
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
Dyno_Dave Offline OP
pooh-bah
Dyno_Dave  Offline OP
pooh-bah
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
A trip to the shop for an a/c repair (corroded aluminum lines to the rear system), and just in time. The next day, we left for a short summer getaway.

Great Lakes: Superior, Huron, Michigan, we touched our toes in all 3 during this little tour of northern Michigan.

First stop, Mackinaw City, MI. Stayed in a cabin. With gear, food, bedding, cooler...no other vehicle would have got the job done, while offering leather seating and limo sized rear leg room for our passengers. Again, a fantastic vehicle. Speed limit is 75 much of the way, which means you run 80 just to keep up, and the Vortec powered Express cruised along with no problems.

[Linked Image]

Next morning, we crossed the Straights of Mackinac (different spelling, but still pronounced Mackinaw) by 30 minute launch ride to Mackinac Island. The entire trip we enjoyed cool temps and clear skies. Here, enjoying lunch on the island harbor's edge...best meal of the trip at Mary's Bistro.

[Linked Image]

Next day, across the Mackinaw Bridge...(note: not my image of the bridge...the water was not this rough when we crossed to the island the day before, though it was the night we arrived)...

[Linked Image]

...into the Upper Peninsula (U.P.) of Michigan to Sault Ste. Marie, MI. Here the Sault (Soo) Locks pass huge Great Lakes freighters from Lake Superior to the lower Great Lakes via the St. Mary's river.

But first, lunch at the West Pier Drive-In. Hey, if the van is great for traveling, why not eat inside of it too?

[Linked Image]

First time I'd had a food tray on the drivers window.

[Linked Image]

Then back to the locks. We watched several ships pass through. Here a 1000 footer (the largest the locks can pass) waits it's turn to pass through the locks.

[Linked Image]


Last edited by Dyno_Dave; July 20th 2019 8:04 pm.
Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750789
July 20th 2019 7:51 pm
July 20th 2019 7:51 pm
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
Dyno_Dave Offline OP
pooh-bah
Dyno_Dave  Offline OP
pooh-bah
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
Next stop, Canada!

Across the bridge at Sault Ste. Marie, MI, to Sault Ste. Marie, Canada! First time for The Express out of the country.

[Linked Image]

Then an hour or so leisurely drive to Batchawana Bay, so we could stick our toes in Lake Superior. Beautiful park, and no one there. Much of the road to it is through small (?) mountains, and winding along the shore of the lake...beautiful!

[Linked Image]

Then back into the USA, starting at mile 1 (so to speak) of I-75 at the USA/Canada border. That means that with the previously described trip to Orland, FL on I-75, The Express has driven most (but not quite all) of this great north/south interstate.

Back down through the U.P. to St. Igance, on the U.P. (north) end of the Mackinaw Bridge. Spent a night in a nice hotel in St. Ignace, with a beautiful view off the balcony. Another excellent dinner, drinks and evening out.

[Linked Image]

Next morning, we packed up, did a little shopping in St. Ignace, went to the Mystery Spot MYSTERY SPOT ?, then back across the Mackinaw Bridge for lunch in Mackinaw City at Weinerlicious. Really. You can't make that up.

[Linked Image]

Then a high speed run home. Makes you feel sorry for folks NOT traveling by van. cheers




Last edited by Dyno_Dave; July 20th 2019 8:11 pm.
Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750793
July 20th 2019 8:35 pm
July 20th 2019 8:35 pm
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 8,817
Georgia, USA
CatFish Offline
carpal tunnel
CatFish  Offline
carpal tunnel
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 8,817
Georgia, USA
Dave! That is very cool! Great trip! Great Pics!

We were in Mackinaw City in May!! I wish we had gone on up into the UP!!
Camped at the TeePee CG!!!
[Linked Image]

And we ate..... guess where!!!

[Linked Image]

Damn good Chili Dogs.


Last edited by CatFish; July 20th 2019 8:54 pm.

The only difference between a rut and a grave is the depth.
Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750794
July 20th 2019 8:38 pm
July 20th 2019 8:38 pm
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
Dyno_Dave Offline OP
pooh-bah
Dyno_Dave  Offline OP
pooh-bah
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
We were just up the road at Mill Creek.

The dog place was good. Damn busy too.

Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750798
July 20th 2019 9:18 pm
July 20th 2019 9:18 pm
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 8,817
Georgia, USA
CatFish Offline
carpal tunnel
CatFish  Offline
carpal tunnel
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 8,817
Georgia, USA
You have a great state to explore. It was our first time in Michigan.
We went up US31 on the west side and it was a very nice ride!
[Linked Image]

I wish we could have stayed longer.


The only difference between a rut and a grave is the depth.
Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750800
July 20th 2019 9:22 pm
July 20th 2019 9:22 pm
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
Dyno_Dave Offline OP
pooh-bah
Dyno_Dave  Offline OP
pooh-bah
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 3,457
Michigan
I'm not a native. So I was surprised at the diversity of this state...from huge sand dunes to the west, great lakes, border crossings to Canada, an upper peninsula, the bridge, light houses, snowmobiling, skiing, inland lakes everywhere, Detroit and tons of history...it's a pretty cool place to be. Proud to call it my adopted home.

Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750825
July 21st 2019 11:26 pm
July 21st 2019 11:26 pm
Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 557
Staunton, VA
kursed Offline
addict
kursed  Offline
addict
Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 557
Staunton, VA
Freaking awesome trip and great pics. Thanks for sharing man.


[Linked Image]
Re: My 1997 Express [Re: Dyno_Dave] #750830
July 22nd 2019 8:41 am
July 22nd 2019 8:41 am
Joined: Oct 2015
Posts: 294
Beaufort, SC USA
NEmery Offline
enthusiast
NEmery  Offline
enthusiast
Joined: Oct 2015
Posts: 294
Beaufort, SC USA
awesome pics. I am originally from Southeast Michigan. People can never understand the Beauty of Pure Michigan.


'79 Chevy G30, '91 Ford Econoline Winnebago Conversion, and a '77 Dodge B100

[Linked Image]
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