I understand that we have not had snow in Wilmington since 2002.
Weather man has talked about a winter mix for the last week. A system coming up from the south, running right along the coastline. Forecasting for bad weather east of I-95. This is our 2nd winter in Wilmington and last year’s was pretty mild, which we really enjoyed.
This winter has been colder, we have had lows at night in the 20’s and a couple days of only high’s in the 30’s. Historically all our bad winter storms come from the south. When the weatherman says it’s coming the the south, we all perk up and buy the milk and bread! Oh, have you ever ate a milk sandwich?
The system was to be in our area on Wednesday afternoon starting as rain/freezing rain and sleet. All this was to turn to snow after temps dipped back down Wednesday night. This is a fast moving system and was forecasted to be finished after midnight.
I work at the Federal Courthouse downtown Wilmington and we got the word to shut it down at 2:30pm It was cold and cloudy all morning, looking like it was gonna snow any minute. When I left the building at 2:35pm it had started raining. About 4 PM it turned to sleet and then freezing rain and windy. Checked outside at 10PM and it was snowing!
Woke up on Thursday to sunshine and about 3 inches of snow on the ground. Tammy and I got out and walked around the neighborhood, it sure was pretty. I cleaned the snow off the Jeep and we took off for the beach! Went down to Kure Beach and Fort Fisher checking out the sights. Sure don’t see ice and snow around the beach much here. A lot of folks out enjoying the sunshine.
So with the cold temps, it gonna take a few days for the stuff to clear out, usually our snows fall one day and gone the next. Don’t think this one is gonna leave that quick.
We are ready for warmer weather. Thanks for visiting our site and please come back!
As we approach a new year we usually reflect on the past and set goals for the future. I have been slack in my posting and sharing, so one of my resolutions is to be more active in posting what we are up too.
2017 was a good year and I thank God for all the blessings that my family and I have received. We all have had good health, no issues, and have been able to hit the road in the motorhome for a good number of trips this past camping season. Some of the places we visited were the usual Myrtle Beach trips. We also traveled to Roanoke Rapids NC, Sylvia NC, Savannah GA, Charleston SC, Statesville NC.
We visited downtown Savannah, floated down the Tuskagee River in the NC mountains, attended the NC Balloonfest in Statesville and checked out the Christmas lights in Charleston SC. The rest of the trips were in the Myrtle Beach area for some sun and fun.
We have cabin fever, the weather here in Wilmington has been cold last week and the forecast for the first week of January to only be in the mid 30’s and drops to the teens a couple of nights. This is not normal for our area and it keeps me close to a heater.
Yesterday it did warm up to the lower 50’s and i was able to get out in the motorhome and run down to Fort Fisher to charge up the chassis battery and roll the tires a bit. Doesn’t do the motorhome good to sit up and not be used. Can’t wait for out Easter trip to Lexington VA area for a few days with friends and family.
The days are getting longer now, and I have a few minutes when I get home to get some sunset shots. The cloud formation has really be wild the last couple of days and I was able to get a couple good shots. I wanted to get down to the waterfront this pass weekend, but didn’t make it. Hopefully next week I’ll make it.
As we move into the new year, one of my goals is to get back on track of visiting the state parks in North Carolina and take advantage of what the state offers in great places to hike and explore the great outdoors. I want to stay off the couch and exercise more this year.
Got a couple of projects that I am working on and will share them with you in the near future.
Until next time, thanks for visiting our site and please come back.
One of my bad habits is procrastination and it got me in trouble this weekend. I stopped by the storage lot Friday morning on the way to work to start up (LP) the refrigerator for our road trip this weekend and I noticed that the chassis battery was dead. I have been jumping it the last couple of trips. Usually when I get it started, and then drive some it would charge up enough to start the rest of the weekend.
When we were ready to leave the campground Sunday, it wouldn’t start, so I jumped it with my little jump box and everything was ok. I even bragged to Ricky how good the box was working and had used it a couple of times and hadn’t needed to recharge
Well we stopped and unloaded at the house before I took it back to the storage lot and I shut the engine off thinking it would start back up. Well that’s what I get for thinking. It took about 10 minutes to unload and I gave Tammy a quick kiss and went out to the motorhome and it wouldn’t start. It was so dead it wouldn’t even click. So being the Boy Scout I am, I grabbed my trusty little jump box and hooked it up and went back inside to start it up. I turned the key and all I got was a couple of clicks. Went back out to recheck the connections and saw that the jump box was under low power.
Well I got the charge cable for jump box, went inside to put it on charge while the motorhome sits in front of house blocking half the street. Neighbors really love me now. Everyone that could help was out of place so I called AAA for a jump. I was worried that they wouldn’t respond because I don’t have the RV on it. I didn’t think I would need them being that we had Good Sam Road Assistance. I figured that AAA would be quicker for a jump. I called them and they would jump the RV but my plan does not cover tire change or towing. Will look into adding the RV plan to our account being that 95 percent of our travels are in NC.
Within 30 mins Keith with AAA arrived and give me a jump and I got rolling to the storage lot and cleared the street. Now as a side note, when we moved from Fayetteville to Wilmington, during the downsizing I got rid of my jumper cables. When you are downsizing you have to be careful and be particular about what you get rid of. And if I had kept my jump box charged I wouldn’t have needed jumper cables.
We left Wilmington after work on Friday, had no problems crossing the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge and taking Highway 17 south to Myrtle Beach SC. The campground is located at 10108 Kings Rd, and convenient to Walmart, Tanger Outlets and Bass Pro Shop. Google maps puts it 69 miles away and taking 1 hour 23 mins. Traffic was not bad for a Friday evening and we made it in to the campground before dark and got set up for the weekend.
We met Ricky and Tina at the campground and enjoyed a nice easy weekend, and didn’t leave the campground till Sunday when we came home. The weather was beautiful and we spent most of Saturday on the beach enjoying the fun and sun. There was a nice breeze that kept the temperature very pleasant. This was good because Myrtle Beach does not allow canopies on the beach like we use in NC and a umbrella doesn’t work to good sometimes when the wind picks up.
This campground is on the beach and our favorite in the Myrtle Beach area, it’s on the north end and easy to get in and out of. The sites are all pull thru, full hooks with cable and have a covered picnic table. The sites are on the small side and if you have big rigs beside you sometimes it’s tight getting into it. If we had taken the jeep, we would have filled up the site from street to street. They have a bunch of bathhouses and are always very clean. This is one of the few places we go that I use campground showers.
There is a lot to do at the campground and they always have activities going on. They have a large pool with a lazy river, kiddy pool and hot tub. They even have a smaller enclosed pool which is nice in the winter. This campground is very popular for the snowbirds. They have a nice camp store, arcade and food grille. They also have a small lake in the middle of the campground. There is something for everyone to do, young or old. They have a guard shack at the entrance greeting everyone that enters and security that patrols at night.
As always time goes by quickly when you are having fun, and before we knew it, we had to raise the jacks and come back home. We had a great weekend seeking fun and sun! Thanks for visiting our site and please stop by again!
Tammy and I left Wilmington after work on Thursday and headed to The RV Resort at Carolina Crossroads off I-95 near Roanoke Rapids NC. This is about 179 miles from Wilmington and a good 3 hour drive.
We traveled to Smithfield NC and stopped at a Walmart for the night being that we weren’t supposed to be at the campground until Friday.
If we are traveling over a couple of hours away from home, we like to leave the evening before and break up the trip. We arrived at the Walmart just after dark and found other big trucks and a couple of campers already there. So we found us a spot and shut it down for the evening after we did a little shopping at Walmart. This was a 24 hour store, which has traffic moving around all night but I like the fact that there is movement and the parking lot is lit all night. Helps that the generator dampens the noise.
I was up early getting the bugs off the front of the motorhome and checking things out and we were on the road by 8:00am and moved over to Carolina Outlet which is on I-95 at exit 97. We parked there until they opened at 10:00 and did a little shopping for Tammy.
We only had to travel 74 miles north on I-95, traffic was light and we just took our time. The campground is only about a mile off the interstate behind the Roanoke Rapids Theatre, which was opened by Dolly Parton’s brother Randy. The place has a lot of history and has a big “for sale” sign in front.
Being that the campground is so close to the interstate, it is very convenient for RV’ers looking for quick overnight only stay while they are traveling north or south. They advertise “express checkin” and $32.00 overnight rate. The site behind us changed occupants every night.
I knew when I saw this sign pulling in, I was in trouble. It’s a “no no” in most campgrounds to wash your camper. This is the first one that said it was alright, I have seen a couple that would charge you a fee and one that had an area to wash your RV at. All we had to do was provide the brush and bucket. That’s the first thing Tammy wanted to do, was wash the motorhome….which was needed being that the location we store ours in is very dusty and it had been awhile since I was able to wash it. And then on Sunday afternoon she decided we needed to clean the underside of our awning.
This was a nice campground, paved pull thru sites with a patio, 50 amp service with ok cable and wi-fi. The bathhouses were on the small side, but clean. Nice pool and hot tub, with a covered area with pool table and other games. They had gazebos located thru out the campground on selected sites and if you were good enough, you could set up where you could step out of the camper onto the gazebo. The campground had a lot of long term campers (there is a big gas line project going on in the area) in the back, however the place is quite at night and the whole holiday weekend we were there.
The girls picked this location, being that we hadn’t been there before. There is not much to do in the area (I did pick up another state park) but would be a good place to work out of and I wouldn’t have a problem staying there again. The rate was $42.00 a night and gave a Good Sam discount. We were with Ricky and Tina, Randy and Teresa and had a good weekend resting, eating and having good fellowship. The weather was good, with no rain in our area. On Saturday, we went over to Medco Mountain State Park which was about 20 minutes away in Hollister NC.
All to soon it was time to come back home on Monday morning, after being treated with sausage and biscuits for breakfast by Randy and Teresa it was time to say our goodbyes and head back to the port city.
Ok, so a lot of RV’ers have a US map displayed somewhere on their RV showing different colors in the states that they have traveled with their RV. Well Tammy has joked that we should get us one. I have told her we didn’t need to get one, that I would be embarrassed being that we have only been in NC and SC with our campers.
Well she did get us a cute little pillow that has a US map on it that you can use a permanent marker to show what states you have visited.
Well ours now has the state of Virginia on it, we were only 8 miles from the state line and I couldn’t resist going. We made it to the state line and I took the first exit and gassed up at a Pilot Truck Stop before returning to North Carolina.
We got back into Wilmington around 3:30pm after an easy trip home stopping at a rest area on I-95 where we took a break and had lunch.
Tammy and I are looking forward to when we will be able to hit the road for more then just the weekend seeking fun and sun! Thanks for visiting our site and please stop by again!
We have been going to Willow Tree for the last couple of years and usually visit in the spring and fall. The campground has large sites, I believe these sites are about as large as we have ever stayed in. Most campground utilize smaller sites trying to fit in as many units they can.
All sites are paved pull-thur with a patio, no cable and slow wifi. As a side note our Verizon signal was slow too. This is probably the cleanest campground we have been too. They have a camp store, laundry, game, and exercise rooms. Large pool, hot tub and a lake for swimming and fishing. There are some long term units and it’s a favorite snow bird location.
We met three other couples from Hope Mills and Fayetteville NC. Most of our camping weekends are with one or more of these families. They all arrived by dark on Friday evening and we were excitedly waiting for the arrival of our friends, who have purchased a new 40FT Tiffin DP. They purchased the Tiffin at Lazy Days in Florida during April and this was there first camping trip. They rolled in and set up like pros and the coach sure is pretty and I know that they will enjoy it. They are in the process of downsizing and selling there home to become full timers. Both plan to retire in December.
No better way to start Saturday, then with Barbara and Robert cooking the sausage and bacon for breakfast. Jane flipped the pancakes for everyone. LOL all I had to do was show up. A time of fellowship was had and then it was time for Robert to give me a in depth tour of the outside bay areas of his Tiffin and all the cool gadgets it has. All I can say is…..I was impressed! That coach has a lot more “stuff” than our Windsport does. The day was beautiful with plenty of sunshine, it was a little windy which kept a good breeze going. Had time to tinker around the motorhome and even got in a bike ride around the campground.
For our Saturday night potluck, everyone brought ingredients for a “low country boil.” Ricky, with Tina taking care of the timer fixed up a pot of potatoes, sausage, corn and shrimp that was enjoyed by all. The wind calmed down by dark and we were able to enjoy time together around the fire ring. Ricky popped us some popcorn for dessert.
All to soon, it was Sunday morning and time to pack up for our return trip back home. The weekends always seems to be so short when you are out enjoying time with friends and on the road with the motorhome. Check out time was 12:00 so it was back to reality as we hit the road back to Wilmington where we got things put up and got ready for the work week to began.
Tammy and I are looking forward to when we will be able to hit the road for more then just the weekend seeking fun and sun!
Thanks for visiting our site and please come back.
Tammy and I finally got back on the road to spend Easter weekend down in Mrytle Beach SC at Briarcliffe RV Resort with our good friends Mark and Jane.
This was our first overnight trip this year and I spent Tuesday and Wednesday getting the motorhome ready. I drained the antifreeze out of the fresh water tank and closed all the connections. We keep it at a storage facility so I don’t have access to water, which meant I couldn’t put water pressure to the system until we got to the campground. So we are crossing our fingers that when we hook up that the motorhome doesn’t become a sprinkler system.
I also installed a Tire Monitoring Pressure System (TMPS) on the motorhome. It’s a neat wireless system that monitors each tire’s air pressure and temperature. Most causes of tire failure on the road are the tires running to hot or to much or to little air pressure. It took me awhile to get it programmed, but works good and let’s you see the air pressure and temperature of each tire as up roll down the road. It also alarms when a tire get’s out of the settings.
We left Wilmington on Thursday morning and headed south on Highway 17 to Myrtle Beach SC, planning to stay until Sunday. Weather was good and traffic was light. Briarcliffe is located on N. Kings Highway, beside Barefoot Landing and the GPS took us around on Hwy 31 and Hwy 22. This dumped us back on Kings Highway south of the campground and being that we were towing the Jeep, we had an easy left turn into the campground.
Check in was simple and painless except for the price, rates this time of the year are running about $73.00 a night and they also have a high tax which is added in. Their store was small and the office was only open from 8:30am – 5:00pm during the month of April.
Everything locks up at 5:00pm, the only way to enter the campground is entering the gate and you have to give a $10.00 deposit for the gate key. This is also a membership campground and a lot of the folks I talked with were members. It sounded like a good deal if you wanted to go there a lot. Check out their website for further information.
We were on site 159, easy to find and back into with the help of my lovely co-pilot Tammy. All sites are paved with a patio and full hook ups with cable. This campground had the best wi-fi that we have ever had. Nothing fancy about this campground, our site was full of leaves and they provided “rake stations” that you could get a yard broom to clean your site. No I’m not kidding, I forgot to take a picture of it. Also no trash pick up, they do provide dumpsters to take your trash too
Now to be fair it was a nice campground and we would go back sometime. They have a nice clubhouse and pool located at the back of the campground on the Intercoastal Waterway with a boat ramp, they also had a small kids putt putt course. They have church services on Sunday at the clubhouse also. The back of the campground had park models set up and some long term RV’s. The area was very clean and everyone had things fixed up real nice. It looked like most of the folks back there were retired. Saw a lot of New York and Pennsylvania license plates parked around.
Our weather was beautiful, it rained just a little on Thursday evening and after that it was clear sailing. Had a great time with our friends Mark & Jane who are enjoying their Forest River FR-3. We had good times exploring the campground, riding our bicycles checking out our neighbors and the area. Also enjoyed good food, had some time to rest and enjoy the slower pace for a couple of days.
However, I did contribute to the local economy a little bit to much. If you are familiar with Myrtle Beach SC, you know that it is very commercial and a vacation hotspot. The campground is located right beside Barefoot Landing, so of course we had to go there, and Tanger Outlets, Camping World and the Kite store to name a few. But it was fun. Sometimes when we go camping for the weekend, we won’t even leave the campground, but these trips like this are different.
This was a great weekend, we had a lot of fun, enjoyed time with our friends and looking forward to the next trip seeking fun and sun!
Tammy and I hit the road to check out a campground in Swansboro NC, and took advantage of stopping by and checking out Hammocks Beach State Park which is off Highway 24 near Swansboro.
The state park is unique that the vistors center, kayak launching area and dock for ferry boat is the only thing on the mainland. The main attraction is the three primitive islands (Bear, Huggins and Jones) that are located off the mainland with one side facing the Atlantic ocean and the other being in the marsh lands. Bear Island is about 2.5 miles from the ferry dock and has primitive backpack camping, a designated swimming area, bird nesting areas, picnic shelters bathhouse and a concession stand which is open Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Bear Island contains 892 acres bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the south and by salt marshes, estuarine creeks and the Intracoastal Waterway to the north. It has about 4 miles of white sandy beaches, shrub thickets and maritime forest. Early in the twentieth century, Dr. William Sharpe, a neurosurgeon from New York, came to Bear Island to hunt. He fell in love with the area and brought it after his retirement. He intended to give the land to John Hurst who was his long time hunting guide. Hurst persuaded him to donate it to the North Carolina Teachers’ Association, which was an organization of African American teachers. In 1950 the group attempted to develop the Island, but limited funds and the island’s remoteness rendered their efforts unsuccessful. In 1961 the association donated the island to the state of North Carolina for a park.
Huggins Park is located east of Bear Island, at the mouth of Bogue Inlet and is visible from downtown Swansboro. The island consists of 115 acres of upland area and 96 acres of lowland marsh. It is home to a maritime swamp-forest and is listed as a “Globally Rare and Significant Area.” It is ric in North Carolina’s coastal history being a American Indian fishing and hunting ground to being home to a Confederate six-cannon battery from 1861-62.
Jones Island has 23 acres, located along the mouth of the White Oak River and is visible from the Swansboro Highway 24 bridge. It is a unique coastal fringe evergreen forest island containing a small wetland area. The eastern painted bunting, a considerable rare breeding bird for North Carolina is known to nest there.
We took a few minutes to visit the Visitors Center and browse the exhibits and information, they had on the islands about the local birds and sea shells that are found in the area.
Most of your state parks have hiking trails, well this one has kayaking trails instead. They have marked trails though the marshy wetlands. Two lead to Bear Island, one takes you to the east side of the island and the second branches off the first and follows the island along the sound front to the ferry basin. The third takes you around Huggins Island.
If you like backpack camping along with canoeing or kayaking, this would be a good state park for you. The wind was blowing hard the day we were there and it was cold. This definitely would be a warm, calm day adventure place.
So if you are ever in North Carolina around the Jacksonville, Camp Lejeune, or Swansboro areas be sure to check this state park out.
Oh, the campground we went to look at was a bust, we’ll be in the Myrtle Beach SC area for Easter.