Finally, I have been inspired and have the time to write a blog post after two months. We are so overdue and are so grateful for new followers – although we haven’t written anything to follow for two months! We had hoped to write more about our travels in Wisconsin and about the end of our summer travels back to our “home” base, Fredericksburg, Virginia. We have been on the go since we arrived here, not a spare minute to compose a post (nor the energy)…. Continue Reading
We mentioned in our last post, in order to be a successful/happy/content full-time RVer, one must be flexible! Bill likes life a bit orderly, no surprise to those who know him, “let’s plan and do it!” I’m more of a spontaneous person, ready to rock and roll to most of life’s punches. Or is it the other way around? 😉, anyway, we are a great team!
We continue to reflect back on what an ideal summer we had in Kentucky! (If you missed the posts, start reading here or just for our recap, read about it here.) A well needed action-packed summer full of lots of miles, parks, hiking, sightseeing, etc. We thought after nearly two months of family time, six weeks in Myrtle Beach would be a relaxing break. And besides, we planned to be back in Fredericksburg for six weeks, from Thanksgiving to the New Year (to include the all important Christmas with family). We’d get in at least a five mile beach walk most days, Bill would complete a number of minor repairs/modifications to our RV, plus finish polishing it! Ah, life is good 😊! Continue Reading
We’ve encouraged others we meet along the way to sign up for RVillage. We did sometime in 2014. It’s free and it has so many benefits. For us, we can now easily stay in touch with others we’ve met on the way. We’ve had questions for many (since we were newbies for so long, we needed lots of advice) and now, we’ve discovered every time we check in, it’s created a map!
Below is the static map or see below for our real time and live map!
You can click here to see our real time map and zoom in on our locations! We’re starting to cover more states this summer.
We are starting our second year in our motor home, Tiffany. What a challenge this trip started out to be! We are headed to Red Bay, Alabama for our yearly service. Chattanooga was only about 200 miles from our last stop, Waynesville, NC, and then Red Bay is only about 200 more miles. So it made sense to stop here. But we weren’t sure we would be able to find a place to camp in Chattanooga, TN. I was determined for us to stop here after reading there are 57 trails within 15 miles or so of downtown! My kind of place! Continue Reading
We’ll be leaving here in a few days. 😂 BUT what makes it really OK is that we are heading back to Virginia to spend the next month or so near our daughter and with our grandsons! 😍
We just counted up how many days we have spent here since we started we started traveling in September 2013. When we leave here, it will be 77 days. That was not really what we thought we would be doing when we started our adventure travels. But there is something about Myrtle Beach in the “off-season” that is very appealing to us. And this month, March, is really Spring Break season but we never really felt the crowds. Although the locals did complain a bit about seasonal traffic. Continue Reading
Yes, we are back! We can’t believe it’s our sixth time since we began our Adventure Travels. There is something comforting about returning to a favorite place. When we started our recreation vehicle (RV) travels in September 2013, we really had no expectations (other than adventure) and no real goals. Well, maybe a lofty goal of visiting all 48 states and parts of Canada!
We are a bit envious when we look at the fabulous travels of two of our favorite hiking bloggers, The Lowe’s RV Adventures (their latest update: They are celebrating five years on the road and “We’ve explored 45 states and 6 Canadian provinces during our journey since March, 2012, crossing the U.S./Canadian border 20 times.”) and Oh The Places They Go, who started their travels in 2010. I’m not sure if they count their states, etc. But let’s just say they have been a lot of places! There are a few others, but these two couples are really living the ultimate full-timer RV hiker/adventure dream.
But then, I am sure there are many who are envious of our lifestyle! The grass is always greener on the other side, or better yet, what does the Bible say?
Proverbs 14:30 A peaceful heart leads to a healthy body; jealousy is like cancer in the bones.
Ok, we are not envious, let’s say we admire their travels. And we know people admire ours!
We are staying on the south-eastern part of the U.S. for now, just because. While we want to see new places and experience new things, we find ourselves returning to two places which are really the ultimate for us in our quest to find adventure, fun and relaxation as we continue our full-time Adventure Travels. One is at the beach, Myrtle Beach, and one near mountains, Mt. Airy, NC (we’ve never written a post about how awesome it is. 😞)
If you are new to following our blog (and thank you to all who are encouraging us on by keeping up with our blog), here are the few posts about our previous times here in Myrtle Beach:
- Our very first time in our recreational vehicle, in October 2013. Wouldn’t you know some of our first travels were to the beach! We stayed in the Ocean Lakes Campground which appears to be the largest beach campground. Maybe too large for us….
- The last time we were here, we wrote a number of posts.
- The most popular one we’ve written, Horses on Myrtle Beach!
Why do we love it here so much? It’s all about the beach! Our site is just yards away from it, a short walk and the beach in front of this campground is the best one we’ve EVER found for long walks. In fact, we can walk five miles and have nearly each day we are here. We also are next to the Myrtle Beach State Park which offers restrooms, a store, food, and a pier.
Sadly, we are “hemmed” in a little bit at the beginning of the walk and at the 2 1/2 mile mark where we turn around, otherwise, we’d probably go farther. The term is called “overflow” water or “over spill.” Since we are into our walks for exercise, we wear shoes and the water temp is too cold to walk through it at this time of the year!
The first thing we do when we arrive, after setting up, is getting the tide charts so we can plan our 5 mile walking schedule. Yep, we are able to walk 5 miles on this fabulous beach daily!
The day we arrived, March 2, 2016, it was a long travel day, over 300 miles and 6 hours. We decided to push it to have an extra day here. I really didn’t think we would do much after setting up, but we checked the tides and guess what? It was low enough of a tide so we walked 3 miles. Phew, we needed it and slept great our first night here.
The first few days were were here, the daily highs were in the low 60s (15.55 C) and the lows hit about 37 F (2.22 C). But every day it has warmed up and now it really feels like spring. We are no longer wearing our winter gear (as of March 10).
I’ve tried getting a few pictures of high tide so you can see how the beach disappears, but we just have a hard time being on the beach at that time. I only have the above one and this one:
Then compare the beach to these pictures:
And finally, we like the diversity of this beach. It changes with every tide! Close to our site, the beach is almost always shell free. When we first arrived, there were a number of shells, then they all washed away. The other day, there were oodles of shells!
And now that I’ve made you wish you were here, here is a bit of the beach for you to enjoy. First is about a minute long video as we walk to the beach from our motorhome. And then a 40 second clip of just the waves and beach!
As I sit here typing this, I am listening to the waves gently slapping the beach. And we hear them when we go to sleep and when we wake up. And now, it’s time to hit the beach for our daily walk.
Next up, what a blessing RVillage is on our journey as we wrap up our time in Myrtle Beach!
We’re not sure why we didn’t try camping in state parks before. Long time camping friends of ours always camped in State Parks and highly recommended it. Why did it take us so long? Well, we thought we always had to have “full hook-ups” whereas most state parks only have water and electric. We learned through other bloggers you can go anywhere from 3 -5 days in a camper like ours without a sewer hook-up. We’ve now learned we can go 5 days.
We have been loving the experience and have selected all these state parks based upon recommendations of other bloggers. But when we arrived here, Bill asked, “who recommended this place?” Oh, my, we had the hardest time getting to our site (narrow, dirt/sandy road with lots of trees) and then backing into it (trees and sandy site). And then we were swarmed by “No See Ums” (biting midges, biting gnats or sand flies). In addition, the trip here was not that smooth – bad situation at a Flying Jay where a regular car, not towing anything, decided to tie up one of the two RV gas lanes (and it busy was for RVers). We lost about 20 minutes there and we were somewhat in a hurry since we had plans to meet up with friends in Sopchoppy, Florida. We rarely have such plans as we never know what issue we may be confronted with on our journeys.
Once we finally got set up, we ate a quick dinner, then charged down to the Sopchoppy City Park to meet our friends. That took our minds off of what we thought was going to be a bad camping experience. At the park, we were also swarmed by no-see-ums. Our friends assured us their season is short, they don’t like hot weather or breezes. After being bit about 20 times, they seemed to have left the area. Now after staying here 3 days, this place has grown on us and we’ve decided we will return.
We did learn a lesson from this state park. From now on, we need to read as many reviews as we can find and learn as much as before show up at a State Campground. It would be helpful to know the campsite layouts, which is not entirely possible on the “Reserve America” site. We’ve e started taking pictures of the actual campground sites for future use and we are loading them into Campendium, a new “RV Parks and unique Camping Locations” website. And we are talking to more people in these campgrounds who tend to know which ones are the best!
In a recent blog, we said we don’t like to travel on Sundays and we did all we could to avoid it again. So while we traveled here on Saturday, Sunday we had to change our site (from 29 to 27). And we planned to attend church with our friends who live here. The husband is the Pastor. After meeting up with them late Saturday afternoon, we broke the news to them, our ability to attend church depended on whether the people in site 27 had left in time for us to move over. And we had to move by 1:00. When we went to bed, site 27 was still empty. When we woke up, we were happy to see the site was still empty. The Park Ranger told us we could move over Sunday when the lot was vacant! We were up early enough we were able to do it and made it to church on time. And this time, it was more of a drive through site, so no issues….except we were so anxious to move, set up and make sure we could hook up the electric ok that we forgot to make sure we could open our slides without hitting a tree….or in this case, the water hook up. We didn’t discover it until we were already unhitched and the clock was ticking….Well, it all worked out great and if you want to read more about our time with this amazing couple, I blogged about our time with them here, on my (Debbie’s) personal site.
Back to our long weekend here: We were here too short of a time. We took a walk at the downtown Sopchoppy City Park (those pictures on the personal blog site), and then 3.4 miles on Monday around the campground and Ochlockonee State park. Here are these few pictures of one of the prettiest weather days we’ve had in months!
After that walk, we drove about 40 minutes to the Saint Mark’s Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center where Bill could finally buy his “America the Beautiful” lifetime pass (you must be 62, so now you know how
old young he is). This has been a dream since he was told about it in May last year when we went to the Shenandoah National Park. What a treat it was! The lady who sold it to him was 91 years old! I had to take a picture. She was a sweet heart…and she reminded us of Bill’s mom, who turns 94 tomorrow!
With this pass for only $10, he can enter “2000 Federal Recreation sites. Each pass covers entrance fees at national parks and national wildlife refuges as well as standard amenity fees at national forests and grasslands, and at lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management and Bureau of Reclamation. A pass covers entrance and standard amenity fees for a driver and all passengers in a personal vehicle at per vehicle fee areas (or up to 4 adults at sites that charge per person). Children age 15 and under are admitted free.”
We then drove around the park and saw how many great trails there are and so many birds! Now we know we must return to this area. So much to see, so little time! Here is our review of the campground, which includes pictures of our campsite.
Next, we’re off to Torreya State Park, then Little Talbot Island in Jacksonville, Florida. And then, heading up to see our precious grandson!
WOW, is about all we can say! It’s fun to have no expectations when we arrive at a State Park, so far, we’ve never been disappointed! We had read a few blogs about this park, so we did have high expectations and we weren’t disappointed. The only disappointing thing is that we could only get reservations for four days since we didn’t really plan ahead.
We were warned by other’s we’ve met in other State Park Campgrounds. This is more like a “resort” over a state park. It is an RV resort on prime beach front real estate with one of the most beautiful and unspoiled beaches in the US. Here is our official park review on Campendium.
As we wrote in the other two State Park blogs, Florida Caverns and Falling Waters, we do love to hike. But we know when we are at a beach, we are happy for long beach walks. And that is what we have in this state park. It’s easier to just quote from the Florida State Park website about the beach and RV resort: “Topsail Hill offers a wide variety of natural resources including 3.2 miles of secluded, white sand beaches with majestic dunes over 25 feet tall. Three rare coastal dune lakes provide excellent freshwater fishing. Although boats are not allowed, fishing from the shoreline yields bass, bream, panfish, and catfish. Lakes, pristine beaches, old-growth long leaf pines, sand pine scrub, and a variety of wetlands offer a bird-watching and hiking paradise. Visitors may bike, walk, or enjoy a quick ride to the beach on our timely tram service to swim, fish, sunbath, or beachcomb. Gregory E. Moore RV Resort features a (non-heated) swimming pool and shuffleboard courts. Furnished bungalows are available for weekly stays. A camp store offers a variety of camping items, as well as souvenirs and rentals.”
There are 140 RV/trailer sites. From what we could see, they are all on concrete pads. But our pad suffered a lot of damage and was severely cracked and pieces were raised up. The road to our site was also damaged and needs a face lift. But since it is a “state park” we can’t be too hard on it. But some sites are definitely better than others! There are 29 cabins and 20 tent sites. We didn’t see those areas, so we can’t comment.
There are many nature trails. The walk to the beach is a bit long, but since we love long walks, it was fine by us. But if walking is not your thing, they do have a tram to ride to the beach. Once at the beach, there is still a bit of a walk on a board walk over the sand dunes. Once on the beach, you will be in awe of God’s creation! It was just fabulous and we didn’t get enough beach walking time. This resort’s peak season is year around. I just wonder what it is like in the summer. In the winter, it was a bit chilly, so everyone on the beach was bundled up and no one was in the water.
We joined RVillage, a social media site to locate like-minded travelers. We made some new friends using it and love how everyone wants to share their knowledge about this lifestyle! We are now going to explore the Entegra Class A.
More about the nature hikes in our next blog about this fabulous park!