Monday, November 07, 2011

My How We’ve Changed

Flagler Beach, Florida

Well, it’s hard to believe, but we’ve been here almost two weeks.  Tomorrow is moving day, and as usual, we still aren’t sure where we’ll be spending the night tomorrow.

We  are going to head back towards the Tampa area, and we want to stay a few days at a state park. The only problem is all the campgrounds are booked for the week-ends and we want to stay until Sunday.  The plan is to attempt to snag one of sites you cannot reserve. We have 4-5  options on the way back to Tampa, but Blue Springs State Park is our first choice.  I guess, we’ll see tomorrow.

Al and I have been talking about how our camping style has changed over the past year or so.  Before we were full-timers or snowbirds, we never stayed at anything but a state park.  Okay, once, but it was right on the gulf of Mexico.  Maybe that was when we discovered the joys of having full hook-ups!

Since last December when we headed to Tampa to spend the winter, we have mostly been staying at private campgrounds with full hook-ups. We prefer state parks for their beautiful settings, but we really have come to appreciate sites with sewer connections and where we’re able to use our satellite dish.

Yeah, I guess we’ve gotten spoiled.

Of course, there is a trade off.  We really miss the beautiful remote sites that we love in the state parks.   You feel more like sitting outside under the awning in a state park. 

Some people do manage to full time and still stay in state parks or places with park like settings.  I think usually those people stay for shorter stays.  We’ve come to realize we like to stay about 2 weeks.   It seems to be long enough to explore the area and not have to rush.  That is also the maximum time we can stay at a Thousand Trails park before we have to be out for a week.

We like concrete pads too, but we like also like to have a nice view out all the windows.  That gets a little trickier at private campgrounds…especially in the winter…in Florida.

Of course, having the Thousand Trails membership is part of it because we can stay there so much cheaper than state parks.  We’ve really noticed the Florida state parks have increased in price a lot since we first started camping.  We’re staying for $3.00 a night with TT, and around $25 with state parks. 

We want to try to get the best out of both types of campgrounds and try to stay at state parks more often.  I guess we’ll figure it out as we go.

We never did make it to the Seafood Festival yesterday.  We putzed around the house for a while, enjoying not having to go anywhere.  By the time we got out, it was after 2pm and the festival closed at 4.   Plus, we found out it was not on the water (what kind of seafood festival is landlocked?) and it cost $3.00 to get in.  It always irks me that you have to pay an entrance fee to go into a place to buy their stuff.   Kind of like a boat or rv show!



  1. We also have found that it is impossible to get into a FL state park on a weekend unless you can plan 11 months ahead. That is just not us.

  2. It seems all us RV'ers eventually adapt to what suits us best along with our budget. We prefer the RV parks and resorts simply because of the services and amenities offered.

    I've seldom ever had any concerns about not having enough privacy even in a full campground.

  3. You said it yourself.
    Before was a CAMPING style, now it's a LIFE style, you are no longer camping but are living a new life style and with that comes a lot of changes. The longer you full time the more changes you will see.

  4. we really like to stay in state parks if possible but as you said it is hard to get a weekend site... my pet peeve is a gate charge when you have to pay for everything as well...

  5. Heyduke

    They don't charge a separate gate fee in Florida when you are camping. It was always a peeve of mine as well.

    When you're at Flagler, check out Beverly Beach Camptown rv park. Beautiful sites...but very 'spensive!

  6. State Parks all over the country are charging more for their sites. New Mexico still offers wonderful deals if you ever come out this way. And like Rick said, we all adapt to what we like for living as time goes on and it will change over time.

  7. When I was a young man, (back in the old days) we camped on the beaches in our tents and never though anything about it. Nowadays, unless it's a 5 star camping resort, we don't even consider it. My how things have changed :-)

  8. That's one of the reasons I volunteer at NWRs. Full hookups, and surrounded by nature. :)

  9. We love staying in state parks too. They have a 14 day stay rule but the park ranger can allow longer, you just have to ask.

  10. I am with you. It makes me so upset when they charge me to park the dang car to go into their event. What is that all about?
    I love the header picture! Beautiful!

  11. We are spoiled too - we like water, sewer, 50 amp, with satellite reception - at a reasonable rate. I also prefer concrete parking and patio. A dog park would also be a plus and a warm pool. Hey, like Rick said, this is a lifestyle - we aren't campers anymore.

    Love that header photo.


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