Dag nab dem gnats

I could kick myself. If I wasn't so busy swatting gnats, I would.

tollCome to think of it, Jennifer will probably do the kicking herself.

That's because I forgot to set the GPS to “avoid toll roads.” After spending $13.20 on tolls driving the Illinois tollway, US 88, from Chicago to the Iowa line, that's one mistake I won't make again.

But the gnats are another problem.

Blame it on all the wet weather but it is impossible to sit outside, even on such a fine day as today was, without being swarmed. They'll die away come sundown but since we pulled into the impressive Scott County Park some nine miles north of Davenport, Iowa, we've pretty much stayed in the Roadtrek, Seriously, I've never seen so many. They are in your ears, eyes, hair and if you open your mouth to cuss at 'em, they're in there, too. mapfri

The park is magnificent  The Scott County Park here is over 1,200 acres, has a waterpark, borders a golf course and has miles of nature trails that connect four different campgrounds.

hopkinsIt was suggested as a first night's stay on this trip west by several readers, but especially Tom Hopkins, of Davenport, who stopped by tonight for an in-person visit. With wife, Loxie, he brought us a couple bottles of local wine from the Wide River Winery, located on a bluff overlooking the widest part of the Mississippi.  The Hopkins toured the Roadtrek and we chatted outside till dar, swatting gnats. Loxie suggested we get some vanilla and put it on to keep the gnats away.

After dark, the gnats went away. Then the mosquitos came out.

The gnat infestation this year is worse than normal, however,and  local TV is even reporting about them:


Mike Wendland

Mike Wendland is a veteran journalist who, with his wife, Jennifer, travels North America in a small motorhome, blogging about the people, places, joys and adventure of RV life on the road at RVLifestyle.com. He and Jennifer also host the weekly RV Podcast and do twice-weekly videos on the YouTube RV Lifestyle Channel. They have written 10 books on RV travel.


  • Sheesh… maybe a re-read of Paulson’s “Hatchet” is in order. Hope your evening gets better.

  • We just left Iowa City 10 days ago after a 3 day visit and headed home to Boise pulling our 22′ Airstream. The gnats were horrible, but I found that plain old Off! worked well. They continued to buzz around us but at least didn’t land on us.

  • Little buggers pack a wallop of a bite. I react stonger to gnats than Mosquitos. We had some in Montana, some lovely welts on my neck. Oh well none here at home here in Oregon if you can stand the heat (100+ for 8 days) There are probably some in the high country, no toll booths here either. Smokey in Redmond and mid to upper 80s for those of you headed to FMCA. You may have smoke to contend with, lots of fires.

  • Lightning sucks so many fires

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