Traveling for over 2 years exploring America, I think it’s time to reflect on those travels. Certainly landing in south Florida for the winter is a great way to spend the very “cold & snowy” winter months. And our jobs as campground hosts enables us to sit and have our minds comprehend the many amazingly beautiful places here in America.
Monument Lake: Mornings can be quiet and peaceful but invariably the wind will pick up.
One of the first things that come to mind is how our life is about exploring …in an RV. Where did this come from? Even though both Deb and I camped when we wore a younger person’s clothes, it was always an extra; never a driving force. Or was it?
Clockwise: Fort Jefferson at Dry Tortugas with red bricks from Brewer, Maine. Galveston beach in Texas. Bottom: Moonrise over Oasis in Ochopee, Florida. Favorite coffee cup at Spencer Bay, Maine. Gator Bait.
As an adolescent, camping in a tent was a way for me to escape the closed confines of a 12X60 mobile home with 6 people living in it. A pup tent was my summer home usually just outside the trailer. Late middle school and into high school, I spent my summers just down the street at my friend’s house camping in his cabin tent. Tim, in a similar house situation, found the solace of just the two of us in his oversized tent. It was our adolescent years and we did what two boys do; played football, fished, bicycled, had girlfriends who they themselves were close friends and we tried to stay out of trouble. Life was good.
I was close to my mother and her boyfriend, Hoppy. They helped us as my family struggled to find our way as a young family and it was about this time that mom and Hoppy went off the grid. At the time, we didn’t have a name for it but today we would call it “workamping”. Living out of a truck camper they would work in sporting camps up north, she as a cook and he as maintenance worker. I marveled at their stories from Tim Pond Camps and Fish River camps. Even their own unsolicited adventures into the backcountry of Northwestern Maine had a certain awe-inspiring ring to them. My only regret is that neither of them saw what was ahead in our future. They would be so supportive of our adventurous lifestyle and feel, in their own little way, their influence on us.
In the summer of 2018, I took a summer job out in Yellowstone. How that came to be is a blog entry all by itself. It convinced us that living out of a 30’ travel trailer is possible, even enjoyable. Still living in a stick built house, the winter of 2018/19 convinced us to go full-time. By June, we sold everything except our F150 and “Campah”, our 30’ travel trailer.
Here is another factor that played a role in our decision-making. Our friends and colleagues (and us, too) seemed to be working for the future. Several of our friends never got to do what they wanted to. Health, situations, even death, interfered with life. We planned and skimped and are now seeing the country on our terms. There is one thing that is painfully obvious to us; this could all change in a heartbeat.
Clockwise: Sunrise over Monument Lake in Big Cypress NP. Ibises eating at the outlet. Bottom: Wood storks, gator and sign.
So here we find our backsides parked in the western Everglades. Beautiful sunsets and sunrises, warm breezes, and very nice people. The flora and fauna of this almost tropical paradise is unmatched anywhere in the lower 48 states. In the past, our adventures have taken us to the upper west into the Badlands and Yellowstone; absolutely exquisite! Other areas on our future exploration destinations are the desert Southwest, Northwest, the Plains, and Alaska. And let’s not forget our neighbors to the North. Canada has some to-die-for destinations like Bamf. As long as our health and curiosity hold up, we’re still young at heart 😊 and traveling.
Coming soon, more tales from the Campah!
… Next adventure; “Where do all the birds go?”
STAY TUNED! More “tales from the campah”!
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