We began our first Great Loop trip in October 2003. The most interesting finding was that only by water can you see America the way it was when discovered. The country developed along the coasts and rivers. We traveled in the Katy Leigh a 36 ft Grand Banks trawler for 6 months over a 2 year period. We will never forget the people we met and the small towns we stayed in. Since that trip we cruised the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers. Today we spend 3 months every year cruising the St. Lawrence River on our Rossiter 23 River Boat docked at the Brockville Yacht Club in Canada.
In 2007 we decided to continue our adventures in a small 23 ft Winnebago View motor home making great loops from Nashville to Newfoundland, Vancouver Island, California, Florida. Alaska, and the Four Corners area. See some of our favorite photos from our trips in the slideshow below. In 2017 we replaced the View with a Winnebego Trend which we used to get to our summer home condo in Brockville Ontario on the St. Lawrence River. Now we drive or fly.
Touring America's Great Southwest
Bob and Mavis Duthie have produced an interesting and entertaining travelog of their tour through the southwestern USA via their motorhome. This video series is useful to anyone touring the area by vehicle, whether in a recreational vehicle or not. The Duthies highlight the scenic, historical, cultural, geographic, geologic, and the everyday useful attractions of the areas they have traveled through and the best ways to get around. Whatever you are looking for: be it a campground, a restaurant, the local laundromat, the best sights and tours in the national and state parks or even the eclectic tourist traps and attractions along the way, these videos will help you find what you seek. Bob and Mavis even cover inside tips such as which side of the Silverton-Durango train to sit on in order to get the best views in their own relaxed yet informative style. Each route is divided up into easily doable segments that cover a day or so's travel and what not to miss along the way. As both a planning tool for your trip and a great remembrance of what you have seen. This video series is a great reminder of what the Duthie's saw in the past. Thanks go out to the Duthie's for presenting this Southwest primer for everybody's enjoyment.
Kent and Sandy Gardam
We have been to several of the locations covered in this series. We have traveled some of the routes they covered. However, Bob and Mavis have showed us sights, histories and flowers we missed on our travels. They have the interest and skill to look deeper into the history, the features, the flora and fauna of the area being visited plus the ability to share it with us in an engaging fashion. We want to go back there and see what we have missed.
Seeing some of the sights and names brings back memories of our travel in those locations. For example, Walsenburg, Colorado was where, when we were traveling with my brother and his wife, we stopped looking for help for his reluctant 5th wheel trailer slideout. Fortunately, we were able to get it fixed there. Yeah, that was the place, an RV repair shop in a Quonset hut, Walsenburg, Colorado.
The technique they have utilized to share their travels with us works well. Bob continually lets us know the month and day they visit these locations so that we can schedule our own visit to these locations. Occasional videos punctuate the still photo presentations with movement and sounds.
Mavis inevitably points us to native flowers and shrubs growing alongside the roads and paths. Her interest in and knowledge of these plans is a helpful addition.
Having our own RV, we appreciated the Duthie's campground observations, where they stayed and what the campgrounds were like, where they made reservations. Even curious-looking RVs they saw in the campground were the same ones we would wish to know more about.
Bob and Pat Koehler, Belmont, NC
This afternoon I clicked through all of your fine photos. Seems to me your account would have great value to anyone contemplating the trip and as a memory stimulator for those of us who have already done the trip. I walked through the photos and can appreciate the homework you did and the photographic attention you mustered. Navigating the CD was intuitive and I had no trouble with the viewing process, Your photos were wonderful and the trip segments were explained in clear detail. We who have made the trip are undoubtedly members, by default, of a small unique boating fraternity.
-- Pete Kopsak (1994 Looper, Former CEO, Ingram Barge)
I had my Mom look at Great Loop CD-ROM over the weekend. The content is "incredibly engaging" … once she started watching the content, I couldn'’t pull her away. In fact, she watched the tour until she exhausted the battery in my Powerbook (almost 2 hours), and still wanted to see more. Later, when cousins stopped in for a visit, she insisted that I get the Powerbook out and show them parts of the tour as well.
-- Gary Hornbuckle (former Duthie Learning employee)
I love it. It was great. I think you had the right mix of water and history. I spent way too much time going through it. I thought it was very easy to navigate, and fast moving. It was educational and entertaining. It got my imagination going and made me want to go cruising. I see lots of possibilities. Good Work…
-- David Benson, Nashville Yacht Brokers
My wife, Jane, expressed interest in viewing familiar portions of the Great Loop CD – namely the 30,000 Islands region – so we sat together last evening, ate cheese and crackers, drank cocktails, and sat back to enjoy the Great Loop Cruise (on the lap top - while sitting at the kitchen table). By the time we stopped watching, we’'d traveled from Parry Sound, past Mackinac, across Lake Michigan to well past Chicago. The fact that was interesting to me about last evening’'s experience, as we watched your CD, was Jane’'s reaction. Long after we'’d left the portion of the Great Loop that she knows so well (and only wanted to see at first), she wanted to keep watching and watching to see where you went next. I think that experience should tell you something – namely that your Great Loop CD really held her attention – and this morning she was asking me how much time I thought we would need if we cruised from our cottage in Parry Sound to Mackinac and back (while spending lots of time in Killarney). She’'s got the bug (now all I need to do is convince her that we need a Nordhavn 43 to get us there.)
I think you’'re on to something with your Great Loop CD – we didn’t come across any glitches or technical problems – all ran smoothly and it’s easy to stop and start and go back over previous pictures/segments, etc. My father’s birthday is coming up soon – we want to buy him a copy as a gift.
-- Bruce MacDonald, Music City Power Squadron
I congratulate you on a job well done. The photography is technically and esthetically solid. All too often, such a presentation is strong in one respect but weak in the other. But that doesn't happen here. I was particularly impressed by the consistently good composition. Your pace and balance hit squarely in the middle. There's something for everyone but not too much of any one subject. You keep things moving without hurrying too much or glossing over significant information and impressions. The give and take narration between you and Mavis is about right, too. Input from you both add what I consider a necessary dimension. You skillfully and smoothly blended all information. Nothing grates or irritates. And after watching a segment, you know what you have seen and heard is an accurate portrayal of reality. I believe it's the best available preview for anyone planning to cruise the Loop and will prove to be a most helpful companion when they finally get underway.
-- Fred Myers, CruiseGuide Author
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I believe it's the best available preview for anyone planning to cruise the Loop and will prove to be a most helpful companion when they finally get underway.
-- Fred Myers, CruiseGuide Author, Florence AL
I'm mad at you Bob! I got your CD yesterday and I can't stop watching it. I always say just 5 more minutes and 2 hours later I'm still watching. The pictures are nice in that it's more like family vacation pictures rather than professionally staged boring photos. I find the commentary, short, sweet, and right to the point and it seems to always hit the important points.
-- Michael Shields, Bradenton FL
This is a wonderful travel guide for anyone in an RV to explore the Great West. We have been to all of the places in your travelogue but it made us see them in a different and better light. If I have one comment it would be that you did not describe in detail what we thought was one of the most wonderful places ie Monument Valley,-- John and Margaret Lester
Bob and Mavis have showed us sights, histories and flowers we missed on our travels. They have the interest and skill to look deeper into the history, the features, the flora and fauna of the area being visited plus the ability to share it with us in an engaging fashion. We want to go back there and see what we have missed.
-- Bob and Pat Koehler, Belmont, NC