We’re baaaaaaack! Did you miss us?
We actually arrived back in Turkey on the 2nd of December and then back onboard Möbius on the 3rd but it has taken us awhile to get back into our onboard work mode moving back aboard our beloved Möbius and reunited with our pups Barney & Ruby. We also had a delightful British family fly to Turkey to come to eXplore Möbius as they are considering moving from their current Nordhaven 72 to an XPM78 which was great fun for all of us.
Some of you joined us virtually by following our Instagram posts of pics we took along the way and you can still access those at any time but I will try to do a quick overview of the 2021 version of the Nauti Grandparents World Tour (NGWT) below;
We flew out on October 6th and were away from Möbius and Turkey for almost two months on this latest version of our Nauti Grandparent World Tours where we had a fabulous adventure getting in some MUCH needed and long overdue Gramma and Grampa time as well as visiting with LOTS of other family and dear friends along the way as we completed our latest version of circumnavigating North America.
I’ve put together this map below to give you a quick visual of the overall trip and our routes within the US and Canada. Our flights over took us from Antalya to Zurich and then on to Miami and then we returned from Fort Lauderdale via Chicago to Istanbul where we connected to our flight back to Antalya.
Here is a bit closer view of our great circle driving route through the US and Canada.
Summarizing Fun Facts::
- 15 airplane rides covering a total of 22,323 KM / 13,870 Miles / 12,053 Nautical Miles
- 6 Ferry rides
- 2 Taxi + 2 Shuttle rides
- 18,221km/11,322 miles driven in our “mini-RV” (rented Chev Equinox)
- Average Driven Fuel Mileage = 29.2 MPG US / 35.1 MPG Imperial / 8.05 L/100km / 12.4 km/L
- Travelled through:
- 4 Countries
- 20 US States
- 2 Canadian Provinces
- 4 Countries
- 3 Continents
Quick Mini-RV Conversion:
This is our fourth such Nauti Grandparents World Tour where we fly into the US and do a long term rental of a small SUV which I quickly convert into a kind of “Mini-RV” by building a DIY platform out of PVC pipe for the supporting framework and two pieces of 3/4” plywood covered in thin carpet to create a bed platform.
A 3” memory foam mattress topper on top from Walmart and a double sleeping bag, lined with Canadian Lumberjack red plaid and matching sheet and pillow set no less!).
Toss in a borrowed cooler (thanks Tim!) a set of travel plates, bowls, mugs, corkscrew and bamboo utensils and our backpacks.
Stop by Costco for a couple of cases of wine and we’re good to hit the road!
TIP to Fellow Travellers: there is a secret compartment under the rear floor in a Chevy Equinox that can hold 30 bottles of wine!
Quick Slide Show of the 2021 NGWT:
Given my poor memory and the large number that risks me missing some of the MANY wonderful friends and family we were so fortunate to spend some time with, I’ll just cover a few of the spots along our latest circumnavigation of the USA and Canada.
We lucked into a direct flight from Zurich to Miami so it only took us two flights to get from our “home” airport in Antalya to Miami.
Our now 6 year old Grandson Liam draws us like a super magnet back to where he lives in Delray Beach FL with Dad Tim and Mom Ashley so we spent the first few days with them. Liam kindly gave his bed to us and we had time for fun adventures such as this trip to a local farm with a pumpkin patch and corn maze.
State and Provincial Parks that have “wilderness” tent only areas just for people like us who don’t need hookups are some of our favorite spots for overnight camping in our Mini-RV. With no RV generators and almost no others staying in them, the silence was like an audio vacuum that I just revelled in. The first one here was in Mammoth Caves State Park in Kentucky.
These sites just have a spot to pull into, a picnic table and a fire pit so we stop by a local grocery store on our way in, unpack our traveling picnic setup and open up a bottle of wine and enjoy the natural beauty and silence before climbing into bed.
Our weather overall for the almost two months of our travels was spectacular as we seemed to drag blue skies and sunshine with us almost every day AND the fabulous Fall colours in the trees followed us everywhere as well.
It did get cooler in a few spots such as this very remote overnight camp spot in rural Wisconsin. But we had the whole place to ourselves and enjoyed the peace and quiet and snuggling in our sleeping bag that night.
We may be on land but we always have water calling us and we LOVE ferry rides of all sizes.
Using Google Maps “no highways, no tolls” filters, we try to take nothing but small back roads whenever we can and getting out of Mammoth Caves took us on our first and shortest ferry ride.
Though this other ferry ride as we left Drumheller in Alberta wasn’t too much longer.
and I can’t let the mention of Drumheller go by without giving my rating to the absolutely stunning Royal Tyrell Dinosaur Museum. We were there for a mesmerizing 3 hours and left under protest so DO add this to your “places to see” list!
Being in BC and the Pacific Northwest, we had numerous other ferry rides such as this rather blustery ferry ride from Courtney on Vancouver Island back over to Powell River on the mainland.
Plus two more larger ferry rides to get us down the coast to Vancouver and then over to Victoria.
Continuing with the Nautical theme, our timing worked out just right to see two very special boats that some of our friends had just acquired. This is the Catana 52 that our friends Maurice & Sophie have just purchased and were prepping to head south from here in San Francisco down to enjoy warmer waters in Mexico.
And then this picture perfect Nordic Tug that Terri and David had just taken possession of in Courtney BC. We weren’t able to head out for a sea trial but we got to go aboard for several hours on one of the days we stayed with them in their home in Union Bay on Vancouver Island.
Memorable Stops along the way;
Our route was derived from where family and friends lived as well as a few spots we wanted to visit, one of which was the town of Morocco Indiana where Christine’s mum was born.
We also went through Keystone South Dakota to get in a visit with Christine’s brother in law and his partner who I’d never met and she had not seen for almost 40 years. Christine had never seen Mount Rushmore and given that it is only a few miles from Keystone ……….
…….. we drove by and stopped for some pics.
Our routing through South Dakota took us through the town of Wall so of course we had to stop by for breakfast in the infamous Wall Drug Store(s) which was another first for Christine and she had time to listen to a few good jokes from her newest boyfriend on his bench.
We keep going back to Vancouver Island to visit family and friends there and it never disappoints visually as well. On a truly stunning sunny day on our way up from Victoria to Comox, we stopped at something new at the summit of the Malahat drive; the Malahat Skywalk.
It was an amazing bit of engineering to marvel at as we walked around and around the spiraling walkway to the top ……
…… which is 250 meters above the ocean below.
BUT, the best part is saved for the last; the way you get down!
Which is via this little opening in the top of that spiraling aluminium tube gleaming in this photo.
Up at the top, Christine is prepping her little magic carpet ride down with the help of the attendant on the Left whose only question is: “Do you want a little push or a BIG one?”
We always have Vancouver calling our name with many friends and son Skyler living there and it too never disappoints visually. Of course it doesn’t hurt when you have dear friends like Rick and Sherry who have THIS view out their 8th floor window at the end of False Creek.
We can’t wait to get this same shot when we have Möbius anchored in the bay someday soon.
Along the way we saw a LOT of wildlife but were not often able to catch them on camera but these Prairie Dogs in Montana were huge!
We saw a LOT of antelope, pronghorns, buffalo, bison and deer like this fellow who greeted us as we were heading out for a walk in Banff Alberta.
We passed a LOT of “Watch for Moose on the Road” signs so Christine was a bit ticked off that Canada overpromised and under delivered and we did not manage to see any moose this trip. At least not LIVE ones!
I felt quite badly for her and so I enlisted the help of my brother in law Harold when we stopped in to see him and his Mom Nona up near 100 Mile House in BC. Harold had just returned from his annual hunting trip and so in preparation for her Canadian citizenship exam, Harold served some perfectly cooked moose steaks!
Not to be outdone Chef/Son Skyler had some ground moose hamburger in his freezer (again thanks to Harold) which he cooked up in his super apartment on one of the nights we stayed at his home in Vancouver.
BTW, For those wondering, Christine gives moose two Canadian thumbs up!
One of the common traits of our NGWT trips is that we basically just drive from one great meal to the next and by the end of the trip we have the “muffin top” bodies to prove it as souvenirs. The best meals are of course the ones our family and friends so graciously served us and these gourmet repas were interspersed with some other memorable stops for nourishment such as these few examples:
Espresso and Nanaimo Bars in Banff Alberta.
Nanaimo bars again BUT this time eaten where they should be; IN Nanaimo!
Continuing with this “native” theme, we had just stopped before this in Departure Bay which you can see in the background here long enough to listen to one of my favorite Diana Krall songs ………………………. yup, you guessed it, “Departure Bay”.
My Bride had never been through the Rockies so we spent a day and night in Banff and the next morning we drove over to Lake Louise for breakfast where the higher elevation and Mother Nature served up the post card perfect fluffy snow fall out our breakfast table window.
More new territory for Christine was our stop in the Port of Port Townsend where back in 2005, I had spent about 6 months getting my newly purchased first boat “Learnativity” setup for the upcoming single handed sailing. Inside that boatyard is the fabulous Blue Moose Café so we just HAD to have breakfast there!
Gramma & Grampa Time!
As fabulous as all the preceding sights and visits were, it was all a lead in to our grand finale before heading back to Turkey; a week with all three of our grandkids and their parents in Orlando! And Auntie Julia for bonus points.
We had been able to do this Grandkid Gathering once before about 3 years ago and with them now 5, 6 and 7 years old, this time was even more fun. Gramma is yucking it up with Brynn (7) in front of her, Liam (6) with his back to us and Blair (5) at the bottom. They are all surrounded by Liam’s Dad Tim on the far left with Mum Ashley’s arm at least in the bottom left and Brynn and Blair’s Mum Lia on the Right.
Liam is just wild about tornados and makes his own out of everything such as the paper one here as he and Ashley enjoy watching MORE tornado videos on her phone.
Blair is the thrill seeker and wants to go on ALL the scary rides she is tall enough for, which is now all but one!
Amongst her many other talents, Brynn is the organizer and helper as she briefs Liam on where they are off to next.
It was a whirlwind two months to be sure and I could go on MUCH longer but all good things come to an end as does Gramma and Grampa’s energy and we were exhausted by the time we had to head off to the Ft. Lauderdale airport to catch our flight to Chicago then on to Istanbul and the short flight back to Antalya.
We most want to thank ALL our friends and family who opened their homes almost as wide as their hearts for us every step of the way. As we keep trying to warn you, if you are going to keep treating us THIS wonderfully we are going to keep coming back! Don’t say you haven’t been warned!
And then whoooosh! late on the night of Dec. 2nd we landed back in Antalya. Too late to drive the 2 hours up to Mobius in the Finike Marina so we booked lovely little hotel that is just a few blocks from the apartment where we had lived for almost 4 years while we were building Möbius.
And I got to start the next day with my Beautiful Bride and this almost as beautiful backdrop of the mountains surrounding us as we enjoyed getting back to a true Turkish breakfast before driving up to Finike and be truly back home on our beloved Möbius.
Where have Barney and Ruby been all this time????
Well, they’ve been enjoying a vacation of their own thanks to their favorite Uncle Yigit who loves them almost as much as we do and has looked after them many times over the past four years as well.
As you can see, they were perhaps not too thrilled to have to resume life with their boring parents but over the past few days since we’ve been back onboard with them, they seem to be adjusting!
Hope you all enjoyed this little synopsis of the 2021 Nauti Grandparents World Tour and I will do my best to ramp get back to weekly Mobius World Updates for you as we dive back into getting her all ship shape and sea worthy as we return to the sea as soon as weather allows next year.
Till then, thanks again for your patience during our absence from the blog and we’ll be back for at least one more update before the year ends.
Wow, that was quite the trek. I know you have used this mini-RV type of accommodations before, but I can’t imagine doing it in the wintertime in Canada. To be fair, you were just on the margins of winter, but it was there. Did you not run into any of the biblical flooding that has hit lower BC mainland? Your timing was impeccable. Glad to see that you’re back safe and sound.
Hi Wade and Diane, sorry to be so slow in getting back to you and hope that you guys have 2022 off to a great start already!
We did have a fabulous time back in Canada and the US and as you noticed out timing was indeed incredible. We had blue skies and sun that seemed to follow us everywhere we went on this big loop, plus we got to be in awe of Mother Nature’s pallet of colours with the changing of the leaves as Fall went on. And then our great fortune continued as we left Vancouver just 2 days before they were hit by what you quite correctly called “biblical flooding” with that truly unbelievable “atmospheric river” that literally washed out the whole lower mainland and cut them off for weeks from any and all transportation in/out of that area.
Seeing so much of North America “up close and personal” was a treat treat and we both enjoy being on the road so that was great fun. But of course the best of all was the amount of time we got to spend with kids, grandkids, family and friends along the way. In several cases for both Christine and I we met up with friends and family members we had not seen for 40 years which was a real blast from the past and added to our other visits.
Great to be back “home” aboard Möbius though and back in Türkiye and Finike though as we settle back into life aboard and get to those 2Do lists that somehow never got looked after while we were away??!! 🙂
Hope we can get together again sometime in 2022 and before we or you cut our dock lines and head out of Türkiye.