Watson’s Mill Bridge State Park

 

Watson's Mill Bridge

Watson’s Mill Bridge

We’re at Watson’s Mill Bridge State Park in Comer, GA this evening.  It’s out in the middle of nowhere — far from a town of any size, in beautiful, green, rolling hill country.  It’s a small, very pretty park with one loop of huge camp sites, most of which are pull thrus for smaller rigs.

Here’s a little about the bridge from the campground’s website:

Watson Mill Bridge contains the longest covered bridge in the state, spanning 229 feet across the South Fork River. Built in 1885 by Washington (W.W.) King, son of freed slave and famous covered-bridge builder Horace King, the bridge is supported by a town lattice truss system held firmly together with wooden pins.  At one time, Georgia had more than 200 covered bridges; today, less than 20 remain.

I took the bridge photo in a light rain.  Hopefully tomorrow will be better picture taking weather.

We missed our turn twice on the way here, which added an hour and a whole lot of stress to the trip.  Peggy showed up shortly after we arrived.  She also had missed a turn that added an hour to her trip — and she was stressed out, too.

Our campsites

Our campsites

But once we got set up and had time to get together and talk, the pain of getting here was forgotten.  We had a wonderful time visiting.

After dinner, Ron and I planned to walk the dogs along one of the trails.  But the signs did not say how long the trails were or whether they were loops or not, and I was afraid of being caught out in the woods after dark.  So we’ll explore them tomorrow.

There are no photos of Peggy and myself because we looked too rain frazzled.  But the rain cleared up late today and the sun came out.  The next two days are supposed to be sunshiny and beautiful.

 

 

 

 

Texas Trip Aborted

Tannehill State Park

Tannehill State Park

We made it as far as Meridian, Mississippi last night.  We hadn’t felt well when we left, but hoped we’d perk up after we got on the road.

The very forgettable Twiltney Branch COE campground north of Meridian

The very forgettable Twiltney Branch COE campground north of Meridian

Instead, we felt worse and worse.  By the time we got to Twiltney Branch COE north of Meridian (whose only claim to fame was a $10 senior rate), we were full blown sick.  I fell into bed the minute Ron got the trailer unhitched and was out cold until I got up at 9:30 to make sure the dogs had been fed and watered.

Ron was asleep, but there was evidence he had made himself a sandwich and surfed a while before collapsing.

Then this morning I tried three times to get Ron up and he was simply too exhausted to move.

tannehill2

Behind our site at Tannehill State Park

I still felt terrible, and finally had to admit that we didn’t have the energy to make it to Texas.  So we headed back east toward home.

We couldn’t make it all the way, so are holed up at Tannehill State Park just west of Birmingham for a couple of days.  Hopefully by then, we’ll feel like making the drive home.

There is a lot to see at Tannehill, including historic iron works.  If I feel up to it tomorrow, I’ll take photos.

Casita Tweaks & Plans

Weather stripping added around air conditioner to keep air intake from making black streaks on carpet

Weather stripping added around air conditioner to keep air intake from making black streaks on carpet

For a while I have noticed the Casita’s ceiling carpet around the air conditioner getting dirty.  Finally a nasty black streak of dirt appeared all the way around it.

I took a close look at it and realized the air conditioner housing wasn’t sealed tightly against the carpet. That was allowing air to enter through the top of the unit without the benefit of a filter.  So the surrounding carpet was acting as a filter.

So I took the AC housing down, scrubbed the carpet, and remounted the cover.  But the screws would not go far enough to snug the cover down tight against the carpet to prevent the problem from recurring.

An air conditioner filter that fits the Casita's unit properly

An air conditioner filter that fits the Casita’s unit properly

So I scrounged through my supplies and found some white weather stripping that I thought might work.  It looks like it will do the job.  Time will tell.  🙂

Another problem we’ve had all year is very high humidity from the exceptional amount of rainfall in the area.  Even the ground stinks like mildew sometimes.  Inevitably the Casita started smelling a little musty.  I knew that if I didn’t dry it out good, I would soon be dealing with mildew inside the trailer.

I bought Damp Rid, but was not convinced it would be adequate.  For a while, I ran the Casita AC or heater, but I figured that was getting to be an awfully expensive solution.  Finally I put the little electric heater that we used to use in the Aliner in the Casita.

The little electric heater makes a fantastic dehumidifier

The little electric heater makes a fantastic dehumidifier

I like the little heater because it is thermostatically controlled, and it only runs when it is actually heating.  The Casita’s air conditioner/heater fan runs the whole time it is on.

Running the little heater is a lot cheaper than buying and running a decent dehumidifier.   And it has completely dried out the Casita’s interior.  There is not a hint of dampness or mustiness in it anymore.

I also, after using all kind of unsatisfactory substitutes for the factory air conditioner filter, found the perfect solution at Amazon.  It’s a foam filter just like the one that came in the air conditioner.  The only difference is, you have to cut it to fit.

I bought 3 filters, and figure it is good for at least 9 filter changes in my air conditioner!

spider

A spider lurking on the side of our storage shed

Our weather has been rainy and dreary the past two days.  I didn’t find much outside to take photos of.  But we have several big, fat spiders making their home around our storage shed.  So here’s the best nature shot I could muster up for you today!  😀

We had to cancel our trip to Texas.  Instead, we were going to meet with friends at a nearby COE.  But they’ve had to cancel due to a family emergency.

If the government doesn’t shut down, we’ll still use our COE reservations.  If the government shuts down (which means closing the National Parks and Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds) we may go to a nearby state park for a few days.

We are just bursting to get out again!

In preparation for cooler weather, the Casita's closet has been stocked with jackets, raincoats, dog sweater and coat, hats and fleece gloves..

In preparation for cooler weather, the Casita’s closet has been stocked with jackets, raincoats, dog sweater and coat, hats and fleece gloves.

Our “Home” Campground

We have stayed at a lot more beautiful campgrounds than Georgia Veterans Memorial.  But this is the one that we always stop at on our way to and from Florida.  It has a comfortable, old-shoe feeling to us and we feel very relaxed here.

Lake Seminole COE was beautiful.  Picture post card perfect.  But there was no privacy at all, and any time we came out of the Casita night or day, we were in full view of dozens of other RVs.  Bright streetlights burned all night long.  At first we didn’t mind, but it did start grating on us.

So we enjoyed our stay there, but were glad to leave.  We do want to equip our Casita for boondocking, but there are a lot more pressing things financially.  Eventually we’ll get a solar panel and another battery, a high lift axle and 15″ tires.  Then we won’t have to stick to established campgrounds.  Some day.  🙂

For now, we are glad to be here at Georgia Veterans for a couple of nights.  We got a nice pull through where the lake meanders around a curve that gives us privacy on all but one side.  And the next door neighbors went inside early and closed their shades.  So we sat by the campfire and felt as though the whole lake was ours.

We did try fishing earlier, but didn’t get a nibble.  We’ll try again tomorrow if weather permits.

A Scamp 5th wheel parked behind our Casita while we were out fishing.  I was hoping to get to say hi to a fellow egger.  But they ate a quick meal and disappeared inside.  But it was cool to see another molded fiberglass camper in the same park with us.

This morning was very frustrating.  My online banking bill pay feature is messed up.  I kept getting server errors.  And then, to make the morning complete, my computer died.  So I’m using Ron’s this evening.

That means tomorrow’s got to be a better day, right?  🙂

Stephen Foster Festival of Lights & Craft Village

I don't have words for the stunning beauty and elegance of the intricately lit trees. The dark areas are where hanging Spanish moss obscures the light.

We went to the Festival of Lights at Stephen Foster Memorial State Park in White Springs, Florida this evening.

I’ve seen a lot of Christmas light displays, but the emphasis on the stunning forms of the huge old Live Oak trees with countless intricately woven lights is beyond my ability to describe.

Craft Village is a series of small buildings where live demonstrations of different crafts are presented.  During the Festival, these buildings are decorated to the hilt for Christmas.  We wandered through the shops, watching the demonstrations and admiring the quality, hand crafted merchandise offered for sale.

Palm tree

Free popcorn, hot chocolate, and marshmallows with skewers for toasting were available to everyone.  Amazing, since admission was only $2.00 per person!

There was also a music program which we missed because we weren’t sure where it was supposed to be.  But we greatly enjoyed the sound of Christmas carols pealing from the bells in the carillon tower.

I was told that the Festival will run every night through January 1, except December 25 and 26.  So if you are in the area, don’t miss this wonderful, unique presentation!

Weaving

Quilting

The blacksmith shop was the only one that was not staffed.

Tree and bell tower

The free popcorn station

The aromatherapy shop

A craft village shop

Tall Pines RV Park, Shreveport, LA

We got to Tall Pines RV Park in Shreveport around 4:00.  What a great place to overnight!  Clean, quiet, extremely friendly office staff, and a small, well-behaved office dog.   Well behaved dogs are welcome.  They even have a fenced area where dogs can run free off leash.  Badly behaved children are not welcome.  Ahhhh!!!  Overnight heaven!  🙂

Ron said the bathrooms are spotless and smell good.  I prefer to use the little bathroom in the Aliner.

The weather here is gorgeous.  I had all the camper’s windows open catching a balmy breeze earlier.  I plan to leave one open all night for the fresh air.

The park is packed, but it is blissfully quiet.

We paid $10 less than the going rate because our rig is so small.  What a nice surprise!

It feels good to settle in for the night.  Instead of going out to eat, I just opened cans of Chunky Clam Chowder and melted cheese on Rosemary Olive Triscuit crackers.  A nutritionist’s nightmare, probably, but easy, and it leaves us a little more money to spend on fun things with Mike and Gail!

I plan to tat this evening.  Have one more Christmas gift I’m trying to finish.  Then I’ll surf a little while, get a shower, and crawl between the sheets.

It was a strange discovery to realize that a nice RV park with parallel rows of rigs a few feet apart can be much quieter and more restful overnighting than a beautiful state park–with rude campers.

F. D. Roosevelt State Park in Georgia, II

Registration building at FDR State Park built by CCC

Registration Bldg. & Gift Shop built by CCC

We had originally planned to stay here three nights.  But it is so beautiful that we have extended our stay an extra two days.  So we will be here until Monday.

I am especially enjoying the old stone buildings that were built by the CCC back in the 1930’s.  Dad had a lot of stories about his time working for them before he went into the Marine Corps during WWII.  I think he said that he got $25.00 a month, and sent $20.00 of it home to his parents.

Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park Office Building

FDR State Park Office Building

What is amazing is that the stone work was built with no tools other than shovels and pickaxes.

It stormed yesterday and last night, but today ended up sunny and beautiful.  It’s cooler this evening, though.  It is expected to get down  into the 30’s tonight.

Because it was so chilly, we decided that we needed a camp fire.  I had almost forgotten how wonderful they are on cold nights.  So relaxing.  Odd how a fire mesmerizes and induces such a peaceful, reflective state of mind.

Window view

View behind our site

our camp fire

Our camp fire

Ron pouring coffee among tiki torches, kerosene lantern, and camp fire

Ron pouring coffee surrounded by tiki torches, a kerosene lantern, and the camp fire

The park is filling up tonight.  But our site is on a curve in the road, and spaced so that we don’t have anyone close to us on either side.

We decided not to put up our screen room this trip.  The cooler weather means there aren’t many bugs around.  And if it rains, we can take advantage of the picnic pavilion behind our site.

High Falls State Park, GA

High Falls, GA

High Falls

We spent the night of August 30 at High Falls State Park in Georgia.  We had stayed here before in the River Campground, but had never stayed in the smaller Lake Campground.

It’s a beautiful campground right by the day use area and the waterfall.  They have a pool, miniature golf course, playground, and picnic areas–all beautifully scenic.

our campsite

Our campsite

The lake campground accommodates smaller rigs, but the pads are laid out at a 90 degree angle to the road.  Very difficult to back into, especially since there are deep ditches on both sides of most of the driveways.  But once we were in, it was worth it.

I was intrigued by the rental yurts.  The camp host gave me permission to take photos of the interior of the only one that wasn’t occupied at the time.

The area is so beautiful that we plan to stop on the way back from Florida and spend a few more days here.

Another view of our campsite

Another view of our campsite

Plants growing at base of waterfall

Plants clinging to rocks at the base of the waterfall

The rapids downstream of the falls

The rapids downstream of the falls

Walking toward the falls

Sunny and Ron walking toward the falls

The playground

Ron and Sunny walking toward the playground

The lake

The lake

Yurts for rent

Yurts for rent

Yurt interior

Yurt interior

Bunks in yurts

Bunks in yurts

yurt opening skylight

Yurt opening skylight with ceiling fan

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