Sunday, June 24, 2018

Hersheypark Campground

We had to cancel our early June trip to Cape Charles, VA due to a family emergency. We also had several other things going on in June, so we weren't 100% sure we'd get a camping trip in June.

Last minute, we snagged a campsite at the Hersheypark Campground. We were so excited to get the rig out & get to a place that we would have an "easy" activity. No big research project, just show up and enjoy.

Upon arrival at the campground, we were checked in while we stayed in the rig. It was kind of nice! They also escorted us to our site, which was really good. The sites were tight, but doable. Since it wasn't supposed to be a "chill out and relax with no one around" type of trip, we were fine with the tighter sites. (Just something to be aware of if booking.)

David decided to ride on the couch - for a whole minute - before finding his place under my chair instead.
After getting set up, we walked David & then wandered the camp store. They have a pretty good camp store! Lots of Hershey's stuff, ice cream, camp stuff, food basics, etc. 

We ended up going out to dinner at Aroogas, after finding them on the Find Me GF app. The app has never done us wrong, and it didn't disappoint for this meal either.

Saturday, we waited until we knew the rain would clear, bought tickets online (Hersheypark is running a deal where all tickets were priced as the child price IF you bought them online), and caught the shuttle over to the park. Getting in with the tickets on the phone was seamless - great job Hersheypark!

It was still raining quite a bit when we got into the park and Jon insisted on buying ponchos.

Not too long after we got in (maybe 10-15 minutes), the rain stopped, so off with the ponchos! We rode a few rides & just generally wandered around. I didn't take many pictures in the park. It was actually kind of nice to just "be" and not take a million pics of everything!

Waiting in the longest line of the day in the park (maybe 20 minutes).
I was glowing in the blacklights!

Around noon-ish, we decided to hit up the Outpost for lunch. It's a completely gluten-free, nut-free dining location. Those who are dairy-free have fewer choices, even from here. Overall, the food was good, but not the best I've ever had. That being said, to have a location dedicated to allergy friendly food was AMAZING.

Jon had soft pretzel bites as part of his lunch. He said you could tell they're GF, but they were really good.
After we were done in the park (we were watching the radar and things started to look "not good" around 6pm, so we wanted to be back to the motorhome before then), we headed to Chocolate World. We walked around a little and then did the Chocolate Factory "tour" - that line was SO LONG. Ah well, it was a fun ride, once we were on it.

Jon wanted ice cream, so we waited in line for that, but the line wasn't really moving sooooo we ditched the line & got ice cream at the camp store. If only they had GF graham crackers, I would've loved to have had a S'More!

We had leftovers for dinner & just chilled out for the night.

On Sunday, we took our time packing up. David decided he didn't want to go and wouldn't let me pack up the dashboard cover. Silly pup.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Trip Plans for 2018

At the end of the 2017 camping season, we decided that we'd be giving up our seasonal and get back to exploring the area. A few things have changed for us recently and it was just the right time for us to start traveling again.

So, what are the plans? We haven't figured out all of our trips, but so far, we've got two planned. Yes, I know we should be planning further in advance. No, I don't really care. We're probably going to do one-two trips a month (depending on the month and when in that month we can travel) and we just don't have all of that figured out.

Shakedown (unplanned) trip: Candy Hill Campground

First planned trip: Gettysburg KOA

Second planned trip: James Island County Park Campground, Fort Wilderness, CreekFire Motor Coach Resort (with a stop between here & there going each direction - need to figure out where)

We really need to figure out the rest of the camping season. We've got a few other places we're considering, but nothing figured out yet. We're looking to go places that 1) we've heard good things about, 2) that get good ratings, 3) we've been meaning to go to, or 4) have never been.

Of course, all of this will be decided based on how much our deck & fence end up costing. Welcome back to home ownership!

Monday, September 18, 2017

Hershey RV Show, Sept 2017

This year's trip to Hershey was kind of a last minute decision. Mom & I went on Friday looking for units for her/us (girl camper!) and Jon & I.

Overall, we were a bit disappointed with this year's show. We saw almost everything on our two lists, but there were a few very notable units missing. I've been to enough of these shows to know that this was to be expected. There also seemed to be a bit of a movement away from many of the smaller trailers back towards the larger units. There were a few smaller 5th wheels that were great to look at (specifically Winnebago's new line).

We found a couple of A-liners that we kind of liked. Specifically a model that had two twin beds. Perfect for if mom & I were camping together! We looked at the Little Guy Max & both decided it just wasn't for us. The Lance 1475 is another great option - but really only for 1 person OR a couple. Not great for a mom/daughter camping duo.

The bigger units we were looking at are all dreams. Jon and I are trying to figure out the direction we'd like to move in a few years. We LOVE our Brave, but at some point won't want the maintenance of that third engine any more. We're debating a travel trailer or a 5th wheel. We'll figure it out & have plenty of time to do so. We've got other things to pay off before we worry about getting a truck & trailer of any kind again!

Mom & I ran into Stephanie of RVFTA and chatted with her a little bit. I enjoyed seeing her (it'd been about a month since I had last seen her) & introducing her to my mom. Sorry we missed Jeremy though!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Sunset Beach, Cape Charles, VA, August 2017

Note: Sunset Beach Resort is now Chesapeake Bay KOA. I'll refer to it as Sunset Beach Resort since that's what it was when we went.

This trip started out with us planning a super last minute trip with our friends from RVFTA, Jeremy and Stephanie, and their kids. We were supposed to be at the Cape Hatteras KOA - but the whole no electricity to the island thing screwed that up. So, we ended up at Sunset Beach Resort for part of the week and then switched to Massey's Landing Resort (different trip report) for the rest of the week.

From our seasonal, the trip to Sunset Beach wasn't too hard. The worst part was getting out of the valley - like normal! We had to go over the Hampton Roads Bridge & Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnels. In order to go over/through, we had to stop at a station at the HRB to make sure the propane was turned off. Easy peasy.

David travels like this all of the time. Head under the seat.

And Wendy travels in her crate - facing the rear of the coach. They're funny!

Jon did great over the bridges & through the tunnels!

Someone decided to pop his head out for a minute.
The campground is just over the Chesapeake Bay Bridge & Tunnels. Easy to find & get to. Check in was pretty easy - park the rig & go inside. They had someone escort us to the site, which was nice. We really liked the site we had - close to the bathhouse (if we needed it), close-ish to the main building, and completely within walking distance to the beach, pool, and everything else down that way. The amenities this campground had were impressive - dog beach, regular beach, bar, restaurant, pool, etc.

We got set up & the RVFTA family got there not too long after. As they were getting set up, we took David (the dog) down to the beach. He's not a water pup, but he love a walk on a beach.

We made a simple dinner on the grill & then joined the RVFTA family down at the restaurant area for sunset. There's a reason they call this place Sunset Beach! There were dolphins playing around in the water during sunset. What a show nature put on!

During this trip, we visited Kiptopeke State Park, which we really enjoyed. They have a campground that looks like it'd be another great option for the area - especially if you can get the VA resident rate.

It started sprinkling a bit more than we really wanted to be outside for, so we headed back to the car & drove up to Cape Charles. We stopped by the visitor's center & toured the museum there. Then, we had lunch, ice cream, and walked around for a bit.

One of the other days, we went to the Eastern Shore of Virginia Wildlife Refuge since it was just across the highway. We also visited Chatham Vineyards with Stephanie, while Jeremy kept the boys busy. It was a nice little vineyard. 

The last day, we hung around the campground for most of the day. We got to relax at the pool, on the beach, and just generally chill out. We also had a campfire with the RVFTA family. The "boys" (Jeremy & Jon) were playing with the rope lights and having fun experimenting with the lights and photography. 

The next morning, it was time to pack up & move on to Massey's Landing. We can't wait to return to Sunset Beach/Chesapeake Bay KOA again!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Observation Knob Park - Sisters on the Fly event - July 13-16, 2017

I attended the Sisters Afloat event with Sisters on the Fly this weekend at Observation Knob Park in Bristol, TN. It was SUPER laid back and a nice, relaxing weekend.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Thursday was arrival day. We left home around 10:30 and arrived at about 4pm. It was about 91 degrees when we got there & we needed to set up. Mom & I unpacked the car & got to setting up. This was the first time using my CINCH! tent and I was super excited to finally have it and get to use it.

After setting up, we went to the host's site and hung out for a bit. When everyone decided they were getting into the lake, we decided to make dinner & eat facing the lake at our picnic table. Perfect ending to the day!

The marina across the lake was pretty loud & didn't stop making music until about 11pm. Not a huge issue, but definitely something I forgot about tent camping!

Friday, July 14, 2017

We woke up at some ungodly hour on Friday after not getting a lot of sleep. Between the heat, being in a tent (less noise masking), and the sun coming up, it just wasn't going to happen. We both got dressed, cleaned up ourselves a bit, and then made breakfast.

After breakfast, the other ladies were up and moving around, so we went over to the hostess' site and hung out for a bit. We all decided to get in the water and swim, paddle, or float around. Mom brought her blow up kayak, so we had a bit of fun with that.

We walked around and looked at all of the campers & tents the SoTF group had. Some of them were really cool!

We got out & reheated dinner leftovers for lunch. After a while, it started to rain - and POUR. Thankfully, they were just a few quick-passing afternoon showers. The Cinch! did really well. Only one of the poles for the little awning collapsed during the wind/rain. I didn't have it pegged out very well, so that was on me. It stayed dry in the tent, which was a win for sure!

Once the rain cleared up, everyone got started on their offerings for the potluck dinner. I've forgotten what cooking for a potluck is like on a little Coleman stove. Ah well, it was a learning experience!

The potluck was good fun. It was nice getting to know people a bit more. Mom went to bed a little earlier than I did so that she could read and wind down a bit. I woke her up at one point because she was face down in her pillow & I couldn't tell that she was breathing. Gotta make sure she's ok!

I ended the night with the other ladies at the campfire.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Another early-ish morning for us! The music from the night before went until about 11pm again, so there was no use for me trying to sleep before then. I think I got a couple of hours of sleep each night. #tentlife

We had breakfast and got ready for the pontoon boat ride that we were going on with the group. Mom and I decided to drive over so that we could go grab lunch after. We were air conditioning seeking missiles! But before lunch - pontoon!

After boat, we pulled up the "Find me Gluten Free" app and decided on Mellow Mushroom for lunch. It was wonderfully air conditioned and with cold drinks! It was everything we wanted it to be. We also stopped & gassed up the car so that we didn't have to worry about it the next day.

After lunch, we went back to the campground & relaxed a bit. We also packed up a few things that we didn't need to use between then and when we left. We were headed out to a local marina for dinner with the group. It was interesting, to say the least. The company was good - the music was just ok... and LOUD. We left after about two hours (and multiple others did too).

We got to bed & finally figured out the temperature thing a bit more and got a bit more sleep.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Our original plan was to leave by 9am. We were both up around 6am, so we started packing up. We were ready to get on the road right around 7am, so we started out. We got home just after noon. Jon's sister & her kids were there getting ready to head to the pool & mom headed out not too long after.

Following the Trip

I forgot one other thing about tent camping... airing everything back out! I popped the tent back up on the screened in porch & let it air out. Then, I laid everything else out over the next few days. Not a big deal, but definitely something I don't have to do with the RV!