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THURSDAY - When we were dumping our tanks in the campground this morning Tricia noticed that one of the tires on the driver's side was wearing more rapidly than the other three.

The two inside rows of tread are all but gone on this tire, meaning the alignment of that tire is probably way off. I estimate we have over 30,000 miles on this set of trailer tires. We put them on in September of 2021 and remember, we did go all the way to Alaska and back on them last summer.

We only have 125 miles to travel to our next campsite and I decided we would replace that tire with our brand new matching spare tire when we arrived.

About 75-miles into our drive it was time to start thinking about filling up with gas. All the stations we had passed up to this point were all between $3.39 and $3.49 a gallon. Looking 25-miles ahead using our Gas Buddy app we saw that in the town of DeWitt (pop. 3,292) there were two gas stations both selling at $2.99 a gallon. We decided to wait and fill up there.

While filling with gas I noticed there was a large paved and level empty parking lot across the street that would probably be a better location than a campsite to change a tire. So just 25-miles from our destination we rolled over to the parking lot and began the process of changing the tire on THE POD.

First up, locate all the tools needed for the job (wheel lock key, ¾-inch deep well socket and ¾-inch drive breaker bar, and last but certainly not least is our large ramp we place under the good tandem tire to roll up onto and lift the bad tandem tire off the ground so it can be removed, no jack necessary.

Next we had to locate the key to the lock on our spare tire rack under the front of the trailer. Then drop down the rack and remove the spare tire. This all went off without any problems, thanks to Tricia's previous experience with changing a tire on THE POD.

When we removed the tire we saw that the problem was worse than it first appeared. The steel belts were actually exposed due to the significant wear of the tire. Would it have made it another 25-miles down the road? Probably, but even if it didn't our TPMS (tire pressure monitoring system) would have alerted us to excessive heat or low pressure before we would have been in any danger of an accident.

Just 30-minutes later we were ready to get back on the road, but it's lunchtime and there's a restaurant across the street named "The Catfish Shack" and I'm starting to get hungry.

Always willing to eat out instead of cooking and cleaning, we made our way across the street and enjoyed a delicious lunch. I ordered a pound of deep fried catfish nuggets and Tricia ordered herself some chicken strips.

When we came out of the restaurant we saw this sporty looking truck in the parking lot.

You can even see the parking lot across the street where we changed the tire.

No longer hungry, we pulled back onto the road, but just 5-miles later we were stopped in traffic, waiting for the road crew that was resurfacing the road up ahead. That's a good thing because it needed some work!

While waiting for the oncoming traffic to clear we had a "dust devil" come spinning it's way across the road right in front of us. Once across the road it made it's way across the field and then just disappeared into thin air, as they say!

At least the final 20-miles of our journey today were uneventful and we arrived at the Pendleton Bend Campground. It's an Army Corp of Engineers park, so we get to camp at half price, just $9 a night for waterfront property with water/electric hookups as a bonus.

From this angle it just looks like your typical campsite.

But from this angle you can see we're right on the banks of the Arkansas River.

Yes, Tricia has already started decorating THE POD for Halloween.

Our first of four sunsets here on the Arkansas River.

SUNDAY - Four years ago, nearly to the day, we camped for two weeks just down river from here at the Merrisach Lake Park in Tichnor, AR.

While we were visiting back in October/November of 2019 we thoroughly explored the surrounding area, including the nearby Arkansas Post National Memorial site.

This time around we're just "Takin' It Easy" and enjoying the view! That doesn't mean we didn't head over to the "Triple P" restaurant to enjoy a Sunday lunch. I was checking out their Facebook Page and was happy to see all the local support they received throughout the whole COVID pandemic and were able keep the business afloat.

This small privately owned and operated restaurant is 10½-miles northeast of the small town of Dumas, AR (pop. 4706) and is situated under the Pendleton Bridge on US-165 that crosses over the Arkansas River. We can easily see the bridge from our campsite!

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