After that it was time to check it out. We walked around Hale Lake on the trail and it wasn't long before we came across some alligators sunning themselves. I only had my IPhone camera but Dave had his Professional camera and he got some incredible photos. I didn't get a chance to get those photos from him yet so here are some I took.
This boy was around 12-14 feet
Scary walking past them but exciting too. The girls came after while we distracted them.
They certainly did a good job of keeping their distance
The landscape is so wonderful and scenic. We enjoyed watching all the birds and other wildlife in the park.
How can you not love this
Dave likes getting the close and personal shots
This is a wonderful park and we're so happy we had the opportunity to stay here and do it with our friends. Faye and Dave have been here a couple times before but at a time of the year that the weather was not good enough to explore the trails. We sure did that.
UPDATE: Had to add some of Dave's photos. Thanks to the Master.
Each night we were there we had a campfire with marshmallows on sticks. Delicious dessert.
Dave getting silly with Faye
Dave explaining how make a Wannadinger
We haven't had one yet
Dave loves to tell stories by the campfire
Wonderful campfire glow on Faye's face
Well there's a taste of our stay at Brazos Bend SP. A perfect start to our travels with our friends.
P'S. Dave even came over and installed the cable through my window and zip tied the antenna to my cell booster up on my roof for increasing our cell signal when we're in a reduced signal area. I want to be like Dave. HaHa
Next we moved on to Palmetto Island SP near Abbeville, LA. We were on a mission to eat some good seafood and did we ever do that. Our first night there we stopped at Richard's Patio for some delicious crawfish. They do a boil that has just the right amount of heat and flavor. Dave, Glenda and I opted for the crawfish. Faye decided to do the seafood buffet. We all were satisfied with our choices.
Dave taking a photo of me taking a photo eating crawfish
3 lbs. of crawfish
Glenda not sure where to start
After a dinner like that we needed to get some exercise so we the next day we got up and went for a walk. Now you need to know there was a prediction of rain the day but the wives said we had about a 2 hour window to get out and back. Off we went on our walk then the clouds started to build up. Dave said "I think those are thunderheads". The girls didn't stop and turn around to go back so we followed them. The next thing we hear is the sound of rain hitting the tree leaves in the distance. then it got closer and then the rain started to come down in buckets with not where to get cover. We walked fast and jogged and tried to get under some trees but to no avail. We got soaked.
No that's not sweat
Glenda can really move
After our rainy walk we got cleaned up and hung out in the rig for the day. Nothing wrong with a lazy afternoon while it rained.
The next day the sun came out and Faye had seen a flyer for the World Championship Crawfish Etouffee Cook of in Eunice, LA so we hopped in their truck and drove north about an hour to the cook off.
We were truly rewarded with Crawfish Etouffee, music and meeting the locals. Everyone was very friendly and helpful in explaining the different foods.
As you can see Dave and I got 5 lbs. of boiled crawfish to eat there too. Can't seem to get our fill. This is a trend that will continue as we travel further east. We're not done yet.
The people here in Louisiana are genuine and down to earth folks. Our kind of people. We picked up some bread and butter pickles and tried several versions of crawfish Etouffee. All were delicious.
Dave and I also met a couple of crawfish queens of the festival. Lovely young ladies.
While in Abbeville we had to take Faye and Dave to Shuck's Oyster House. We've been there a couple times as we've traveled east and west through this part of the country. The raw oysters are delicious along with the crab cakes and bread pudding.
After the raw oysters Dave tried the sampler platter of broiled oysters and found some he really liked then we all had one of their entrees and Faye and I took some bread pudding home for later. We were all full and content.
So much has happened since we got going on the eastward trek with our friends and I'm not sure when this happened but Dave cooked up some great shrimp and his famous French fries.
We feel very blessed to have friends like them who take such great care of us.
Well now it's time to head further east and stop at Buccaneer SP in Waveland, MS. This is where the crawfish addiction gets crazy along with our oyster addiction.
Dave and Faye got to Buccaneer SP before we did and they needed some groceries. They found a Wal Mart and it so happened there was a seafood market down the street. Dave found out they had boiled crawfish for 2,99/lb. if you buy 10 lbs.' or more so, of course, he bought 10 lbs.
and shared them with me.
We pulled the tails off from the head and peeled them and placed those tasty morsels in our mouths over and over again. They had great flavor and just the right amount of spice in the boil.
Each morning we would all get up and take a walk along the multi use path next to the gulf shoreline. down to a new pier that had been built. It was about a 4 mile walk one way. The sun was out, there was a nice breeze and good conversation. Checking out the homes that had been rebuilt after Katrina in 2005.
Of course we had to plan our meals of seafood and it just so happened a couple were walking on the path too and the guy had a T shirt with the Tabasco brand on it.(My account of our visit to Avery Island and the Tabasco Factory and Jungle Gardens will have to come later) I said we were just there a couple days ago and we started talking about seafood. We found out they had been in Waveland, MS for the last month and recommended we go to 200 North Beach Restaurant in Bay St. Louis down the road.
Great idea. We did our daily chores and got together about 4 pm and headed to the restaurant. It was a seek night so it wasn't too busy. Our waiter was very attentive and we had a fun kidding him about looking like Will Forte from SNL. He even sounded like him.
He looked like this...Will Forte
Well Dave and I were on a mission for oysters so we ordered 2 dozen each to start. I must mention that they were 1/2 price from 4-6 pm too. That helped the budget some. We also tried the Oysters Rockefeller and some other oyster dish. Dave and Glenda also had Gumbo. The raw ones were the best. The girls got their meals and we all stuffed our selves. Dave and I not the girls, of course.
What's that smile on your face Dave?
Don't answer that...HaHa
Happy Camper friends...Faye and Dave
Faye and I took bread pudding home and Glenda took some Pecan pie home. If you're thinking we've been eating a lot, you're right....we have BUT we've been getting our walking in and burning those calories. :-)
The next day was our last day in MS so we decided we needed more oysters. The best place for that was right down the road at the SAME restaurant. Dave and I each had 3 more dozen raw and we stuck with just that. The girls again had some other dishes but that's not important, what is important is Dave and I got plenty of oysters. I know, I know. Not nice.
Well each night we got together at Faye and Dave's place and played Spades. They have a unique way of playing and we plan to introduce our friends, Ron and Patsy to it next winter.
The girls didn't win the first night but they put the hurt on us the next night. We can't win them all even if we should. HaHa.
The morning that we were leaving for Gulf Shores, AL, Dave and I got up early and drove to the seafood market for some more crawfish to take with us. We still had not gotten our share of crawfish. Dave, of course, got 10 lbs. for himself. I just got 5 lbs. I think we're beginning to get our fill but we are heading east, staying along the gulf so I know there will be more to come.
We have arrived at Gulf SP in Gulf Shores, AL and we got set up on a nice pull through site. Faye and Dave are across the road. The party with the Alaska friends of Dave and Faye's are all here but we haven't had a chance to meet them all yet. I'll be updating the blog again soon with our trip to Avery Island and the Tabasco factory as I said and our stay here in Gulf Shores. You may want to stay tuned. It could get spicy. Small pun there.