Elephant Butte Lake

Elephant Butte Lake
Elephant Butte Lake

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Town Creek COE - quick stop and on to Gulf SP in Gulf Shores, AL

I picked a COE park from my RV Trip Wizard site and it got good reviews but there had been some heavy truck traffic a few weeks ago due to some construction of a Yokohama plant near West Point, MS. So the road to the campground was washboard sand road that you had to take very slowly and with much jarring.

This went on for 2 miles - not fun
 
We did score a FHU site
 

Took a walk and saw the TN Tombigbee Waterway

 
 
We were planning on staying 2 nights but once we got there and with the road and not much to do around the area we decided to call Gulf SP and see if we could get in a day early. YES WE CAN - they said so I paid for one night(with the Senior Pass for the National Parks), it was only $11 dollars. The Army COE accepts the pass and you get 50% off. Pays to get old(over 62 at least). So we got up early the next morning and headed further south. It was a long day of driving but worth it.
 
We got a nice pull through site on the canal road #491. We originally were going to take #481 but they gave us a few options and said "if you like one of the others, take it and let us know". So we changed. This park is incredible. It's huge but you don't feel like you're on top of your neighbor. The bike trails are awesome and I'll give you more on that later. Today we did some laundry, went to Lowe's to find some parts I need to fix our kitchen light. With all the swinging and swaying going down the road the light fixture attachment at the ceiling broke and the light was hanging by the wires. DIY fix coming up. I hope. I'll let you know how it turns out. Very frustrating how poor the material and design is for these components.
 
Site #491

Road to our site

View from the awning

Different perspective
 
 
After the Lowe's run, we headed to the beach and had some seafood at Sea N Suds. We had some gulf shrimp and a salad. The food was good but the atmosphere was the best over looking the beach. 



 
 
 
After lunch we went to Wal Mart and stocked up for the week. However I know we'll be eating out so we didn't get too much.
 
After we got home we needed to get some laundry done. The park has a very nice laundry and decently priced. While the clothes washed and dried we went over by the canal for some great scenery. 
 
 
Our first full day has been a success and we're looking forward to more adventures this week and going forward. Tomorrow we hit the beach. Some real relaxation. I really like this RV thing. Stay tuned.
 
PS - Had to catch up on my posts with the poor internet the last few days and moving a lot. I hope it wasn't too much for one day. Thanks for following along.  





Natchez Trace SP - second stop

We left Rend Lake and headed to TN - which by the way is a new state for us. Once we arrived we noticed that there was no one in the gate office. There is a sign that says if you have a reservation, just go to your site and set up. So we did. Son after a campground host came by and put up a sign on our post with our name and days we would be there. We got a nice back in site right on the lake front.



I don't know if I'm getting better at backing in to sites or it was a fluck but I got it on the site first try. Either way I'll take it. We were excited to go to this park with our inflatable kayak. The access to the lake was very easy. We noticed that for this time of year the park was pretty full. Glad we made a reservation early. The only bad part of this park is the Internet access. Very poor signal. The only times it seemed to work was late evening and early morning. I did get a couple things posted to Facebook though. Since we only had 3 days, we got the boat out the next 2 mornings. The water was clear and smooth. We had a couple of great paddles while there.


Our site from the water

Nice landscape


This are the premium sites to get if we go back
#29, 30 or 31

Clear nights

Lush foliage
 

 Wonderful place to spend some time, relax and paddle. I'm sure we'll be back some day. Now on south.

Rend Lake - first stop

When we left Blo/No we headed to Rend Lake and the South Marcum COE campground. We Got a nice site #80 along the lake loop. We only stayed a couple of days and did some bike riding on the great bike trails around the lake. The trail is paved and easy to see wildlife as you ride. The best time is typically around dusk. That's when the deer and turkeys come out. We had a great time and the weather was perfect. We had been there a couple of times in the past and enjoy all they have to offer.

#80

Different perspective

View from our site of the lake

Plentiful wildlife

Rend Lake

Rend Lake Beach
 
 
We would've liked to stay longer but we're on a mission to get south and west. Next stop Natchez Trace SP near Wildersville, TN   On down the road. 

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Final goodbyes and heading southwest

It's been a while since I posted our travels this summer. I've mentioned and posted that we've been going in circles this summer visiting family and friends with a couple of side trips. Well we're in our last phase of circles before we head southwest for the winter. After our trip to Bo Wood COE we were back at Comlara campground for a few days before moving to Elkhart, IN and seeing our daughter and grandkids there. We had a great time and even got some work done on the rig. Fortunately the water that got in the underbelly did not affect the insulation and was drained out without much effort or cost. We wanted to have the RV dealer that did the work also see if we could get our toilet replaced however they weren't too keen on working with our extended warranty company and ended up just doing some lubricating and adjusting to make it work better. Well it did for about 2 days then started to act up again. Isn't there anyone out there that will do what you ask them to do? All they wanted to do is get us in and out as quickly as possible with out much attention to detail. We won't be going back to Tiara RV in Elkhart, IN. So we hope to get by until we get to AZ and then have a mobile tech help us. They seem to be a little better at detail there. Enough about that.

We had some fun grilling out and hanging with the grandkids. We took them to the mall to get them some clothes for school and made some meals at their home. Sometimes it's just more fun to hangout than have lots planned. We had the opportunity to celebrate Caden's 13th birthday with some Italian Beef and an ice cream cake. Unfortunately I didn't get a photo of the cake before the first cut.



We went to Ryleigh's school for lunch one day and were at their home each day when she got off the bus. We had to wait until the weekend to see Caden and Brooklyne since they live with their dad. It was great having everyone together. Jasmyne had work some evenings but that's how it is for a senior in high school. So glad she 's getting some work ethic and experience.

Brooklyne and Caden
 
Jasmyne, Caden and Brooklyne
 
 
Glenda kept busy in the kitchen a lot making cookies one day and cooking some of the evening meals.
 

Our daughter's husband, Todd, has a son that graduated from Davenport University in Grand Rapids, MI and his birthday is also in August. He happened to come home the weekend we were there too. We had a good time catching up.


The guys on their phones and tablets

We had some rain one day and Ryleigh had to go out and jump in the puddles with here boots on. It was a great visit and we'll miss everyone there very much. After we said out goodbyes with Brooklyne and Caden on Sunday evening before they went back to their dad's house, we then said goodbye to the rest of the family Monday evening. Our next stop would be Elgin, IL and visiting our daughter, SIL and Aiden in Streamwood.

We were a little concerned that we might not get a site at the Paul Wolff campground since they're walk in only but arriving on a Tuesday turned out good and we decided to take the same site #66 that we had the last time we visited. Of course the campground filled up toward the end of the week since it was Labor Day weekend.

We got together with Paul, Heather and Aiden after we got set up and had such a great time taking walks and playing with Aiden. We went out to dinner over the weekend and instead of going to Coopers Hawk Winery and Restaurant, we decided to mic it up and go to Georgio's Pizza. They have a great thin crust pizza and craft beer. Everything was delicious. After our dinner we had some frozen yogurt at a nearby shop. We're going to miss seeing Aiden while we're gone. He's so much fun and so cute. Paul and Heather are doing such a great job of raising him and he learns so quickly.

Aiden watching TV and having dinner

A brownie mustache
 
 
Aiden likes to eat dinner watching Bubble Guppy's or Blaze and the Trucks. He loves beans and ravioli. He also eats his vegetables without any trouble. One afternoon we took Aiden to Chick Fil A and he played in the kids area after his lunch. Some girls were really screaming a lot so it took him a little while to warm up to the noise and do some playing.
 




Of course once he got started he didn't want to leave. He's growing up so fast. I can't imagine the changes there will be next summer when we get back.

Aiden's "cheese" smile

 
We picked up some PJ's for Aiden and I picked out these. They say "Late Night Camper". The family came out to our site one evening over the weekend and we grilled some chicken and sweet potatoes and corn. After dinner we started a fire and toasted some marshmallows. A great way to end our visit.  


 



We did go back to their home one last evening before we said our final goodbyes. We enjoyed our visit and decided we have to do "Face Time" each month to keep up. Aiden sang his ABC's for us and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star songs. So cute.

We're back in Blo/No for our goodbyes with Dad and my brother, Kent. We decided to stay at Kamp Komfort for the week instead of hassling with the gnats at Comlara park. The site we got is not as close to the Interstate so the traffic noise is tolerable and we have FHU's. Glenda has her last dentist appt on Monday for her gum surgery last month and then Tuesday we head to Rend Lake in Southern IL. We'll keep you posted as we go.