Have I mentioned how much I enjoy workamping at Vickers Ranch because of the opportunity I get to do some creative woodworking projects? Yeah, I thought so, maybe once or twice. Well, here’s one I’m particularly proud of.

Vickers Ranch Handmade Log Fireplace Mantle

Last year, I arrived at the ranch in time to help install and finish a similar mantle my boss made. This year, I had the honor of doing the dirty work. So I thought I would share how to make a custom log fireplace mantle like this one I made at my favorite workamping job.

Ranch Workamping Job to Make Handmade Log Fireplace Mantle

Read on for tips, lots of photos, and plenty of fun with power tools!
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It’s turning out to be another happy workamping summer at Vickers Ranch!

One of the best things I like about workamping on the ranch, besides working with my crazy wife and a bunch of other fun folks, is the opportunity I get to be creative—with access to the tools I need to do just about anything.

Sure, ranch work is hard, but between repairing screen doors, troubleshooting toilets and washing Jeeps, I get to create fun projects like these handmade log slab benches…

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Thousands of remote, offbeat destinations line the back roads of America, all leaving imprints on your heart as you roll away to somewhere new. As full-time RVers we get the chance to revisit those magical places whenever we want, but life can get in the way and oftentimes the opportunity never seems to materialize.

The Road to Pie Town New Mexico

But when the cosmic road map finally aligns your present journey with an old favorite destination from the past, well that’s a sign you just can’t ignore.

Going Back to New Mexico’s Church of Pie

Recently while headed to Las Vegas, Nevada, we jumped at the chance to drive Highway 60 to get there. That two-lane route is a little out of the way to Sin City, but taking the slow lane would allow us to make a pilgrimage to The Pie-O-Neer cafe in Pie Town New Mexico.

Strawberry rhubarb pie masterpiece

This magical spot perched atop on the Continental Divide won us over way back in 2008 as we traveled with Jerry, and just like our sweet boy, it’s been in our hearts ever since.

Jerry in Cochiti, New Mexico

In Search of Mystic Pie

We waved goodbye to Waylon Jennings’ spirit and booked it out of Littlefield, Texas early one morning, high on caffeine and anticipation of our destination: the sweetest spot in New Mexico, about 3 hours southwest from Albuquerque.

Slice of Heaven in Pie Town, New Mexico

We needed to get there before the Pie-O-Neer Cafe closed at 4pm but were so excited we managed to arrive by 1pm. What a joy to see that the cafe was exactly as we remembered it! The moment we stepped onto the cozy front porch and opened the door, the heavenly scent of homemade pies wrapped its arms around us like an old friend.
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In case you missed it, we have published a new page to help answer any questions about workamping you may have!

Workamping Questions and Answers

After working as workampers at various different jobs, and writing about our workamping experiences, for more than seven years, we have added a Workamping Page here in the LiveWorkDream blog!

workamping question answers page

Got questions about workamping?

Ever wonder what workampers do? Well, that depends on the type of workamping job.

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Utah is one of the prettiest, most awe-inspiring states in the country with so many free, gorgeous places to camp.

A Perfect Spot

A few weeks ago, we stayed in this lovely free spot for a week, only seeing the occasional off-roader. It was lovely and peaceful, even during the busy Memorial Day weekend.

Dixie National Forest boondocking

We were only about 15 minutes outside of Panguitch, a sleepy little town that caters to tourists. The last time we had been there was in 1995, when we looked like this:

Badass Bikers circa 1995


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