Lake Gypsy - Camping Trips for 2015

January 1, 2015 - Mayberry Campground, Mt Airy, NC (336 miles)

We spent 2 nights at the Mayberry Campground in Mount Airy, NC. We stayed in campsite # 6 (closest to the bathroom because we were winterized). We spent most of our time in Mount Airy.

March 26, 2015 - Howard RV Center (325 miles)

Went down to adjust the hitch to work with the new Explorer. 

March 27, 2015 - Holly Point Falls Lake NC (87 miles)


We went for our first spring camping at Falls Lake.  Luis, Pattie and Nigel met the Pierries and Arthurs, now know as the PALS, and had a communal dinner and hung around the campfire.  It was cold still so we stayed winterized.  Saturday we picked up Monica and brought her and we went with the PALS to Panera for lunch and checked out the new "Go Ape" course at Blue Jay Point.  We only observed it at this point.  Then we went back to Falls Lake and walked the whole Holly Point campground.  We had another communal dinner and retired to our warm campers.

We stayed at Holly Point Loop 2 Site 48.  You can see a map of the campground here: campsite map.

April 17, 2015 - Home (109 miles)

Brought the R-POD home to dewinterize.

May 1, 2015 - Hibernia Kerr Lake NC (10 miles)

Luis and Pattie and Nigel (Monica decided to stay at home this time) left Friday with the boat in tow for Hibernia campground (Loop 2 site 96) at Kerr Lake.  It was raining and a bit cold so we waited until later in the day to go.  It stopped raining about the time we arrived.  We parked the boat at the campsite and went the 1/2 mile down the road to get the R-Pod.  After we got back to the campground we got set up and had our dinner and tried to light a fire with the pine logs they had stacked at the campsites.  The firestarter burned nicely, but not the pine. We watched a nice sunset from this site over the lake.  But the fire failed to keep us warm and we went inside the cozy R-Pod and turned on the heater.  On Saturday it was still chilly in the a.m. and we had to wear clothes and coats on the boat.  We met many RSPS members at Flemingtown Road boatramp where they launched (we launched at the campground).  Ed and Jean Bernal came along with us also.  The lake was calm and we had a very nice cruise to Clarkesville.  It was decided by the group (since Cooper's Landing was closed for lunch) that we would eat at Lamplighters.  We had an enjoyable lunch and went up main street to the tattoo shop to meet two fellow R-Podders who own the tattoo shop.  They were very nice.  We chatted with them and they showed us their shop and 3D printer.  Then we antiqued on the way back.  When we got back to the boat we put Jean and Ed on the Pearson's boat since they were going straight back to Flemingtown and Jean and Ed had to get back.  The rest of us went by our campsite so some of the RSPS members could check out our Pod.  Then the boats all rafted up across the lake from our campsite.  We rafted up for a bit then departed to eat dinner at our campsite.  There was another gorgeous sunset and it was fun to see them rafted up across the lake.  We lit a real fire with purchased firewood (nothing good is ever free).  It was also a bit warmer Saturday so we enjoyed the fire longer.  Sunday was an even nicer day and we slept in and relaxed until Brad arrived.  We went out on the boat for a nice long cruise with Brad exploring the dam and some of the fingers of Kerr Lake.  We did not get to swim as the water was freezing and the air felt nice (not hot) so no-one felt inspired to jump in.  After a relaxing cruise we took the boat out and went to the campsite to cook steaks and Brad brought hotdogs.  We had s'mores for dessert.  Most of the campers had left by Sunday afternoon so the campground was extremely peaceful.  There was another gorgeous sunset.  Pattie and Nigel went back to Raleigh to spend the night to be sure Monica was fine and got up for the 1st day of her child care class at Wake Tech.  Monday a.m. Pattie returned to the campsite and we had a relaxing lunch and packed the camper up to return it to the storage shed.  Then we returned to the site to get the boat .  The weather was so nice and it was so peaceful it was hard to leave.


Notes:
  1. Sites 94 to 97 have nice grills, new decks,  and access to the water.
  2. Site 93 has no driveway.  Sort of a drive through.  Park parallel to the road and get good view of the water.
  3. Sites 83 to 92 re not good for RVs.
  4. Site 82 is a double.  Very nice and good view of the sunrise.  Not too protected during storm season.
  5. Sites 80 and 81 is very private and level.  Very nice.  Not too protected during storm season.
  6. Site 79 very nice.  Level with a long driveway.  Very private.
  7. Sites 101 and 102 are nice.  Good water view and have a good boat beach.  Protected during storm season.
  8. Sites 107 and 108 are good for boating.   Protected during storm season.  Near boat ramp.
  9. Sites 109 and 110 are not good for boating.   Protected during storm season.  Near boat ramp.


June 12, 2015 - Asheville North Carolina (622 miles)


Monica went with us and we spent the weekend celebrating Carina's 22nd visiting restaurants (Mela Indian, Sunny Point Cafe, The Hop for IceCream, Vortex Doughnuts, Farm Burger) and doing yoga in the park (Luis passed), and hiking to waterfalls in Hendersonville (Hooker Falls, Triple and High Falls), and walking around the downtown of Asheville, always fun.

Taps RV Park was a nice RV park very convenient for visiting Asheville.  Similar to staying at a KOA.  Small with 2 bathrooms with showers and not scenic, but full hookups, good price, and convenient location.  Bill the owner was very nice.  Staying late was not a problem $2 an hour, just clear it in advance.

Row A has the most privacy on the back side.  It is also more sheltered from the road noise.  However, there are train tracks on the back side of the park so you can hear the train go by at least twice a day.  Wi-Fi was spotty on our site (A10) so I would rather stay closer to the office (A4 to A7).  Or if A4-A7 aren't available we could go with C1-C7, but less private.

We stayed at Taps RV Park Site A10.  You can see a map of the campground here: Taps RV Map.

July 2, 2015 - Holly Point Falls Lake NC (95 miles)

We arrived at Holly Point in the evening (Thursday) and it started raining a few minutes after our arrival.  Monica and I put some things inside and Luis did the camper set up in the pooring rain.  (At least it was warm).  About the time he finished it stopped raining.  :)  We build a campfire and cooked Kielbasa on the smore forks.  Yum!  It was very hot and humid so we had a cozy inside evening with our A/C and tv in the Serenity Pod.  

The next morning (4th of July) was surprisingly nice so Luis and I drove the TV down to the boat ramp and launched the tandem kayak onto Falls Lake.  It was a pretty and peaceful morning with hardly a boat in site (due to the dismal forecast).  We saw hawks, a Blue Heron and some gorgeous large white Hibiscus with red centers on one shore.  We followed one of the shorelines and went into the small fingers we can't explore with our boat.  

It was still nice when we got back to camp.  Monica and I went to the bathhouse and showered.  Centipedes were fighting us for the showers, but we managed to win in 2 stalls.  I took Monica to meet a friend and she was going to a 4th of July party with her friends.  Luis and I charcoaled filet mignon.  It was delicious.  The nice weather held out and Luis and I went down to one of the swim areas for a dip.  We picked up Monica later and settled into a quiet 4th of July evening as no fireworks of any kind are allowed at the campground or over Falls Lake.

Sunday we  got up and the weather was still holding out although the forecast was ominous for the afternoon.  So Monica and I went down for a quick swim and we planned on packing up right after lunch.  We had leftover Kielbasa and steak.  Still yum!

We spent a bit of extra time disconnecting due to the muddy nature of some of the items and departed around 2:00.  Luis took Serenity Pod back to the storage garage and Monica and I went home to do wash in the car.  :) 


Notes:
 
  1. The sites on the outside of the loop are very private.
  2. Sites 12 and up have a dip on the driveway which may make removing the weight distribution hitch bars difficult.
  3.  Sites 6, 7, and 10 are the best.

We stayed at Holly Point Loop 1 Site 17.  You can see a map of the campground here: campsite map.


August 7, 2015 - Campfire Lodgings, Asheville, NC (628 miles)

We left Friday late morning and headed to Asheville.  We arrived around 4:30 at the Campfire Lodgings Campground.  Luckily no-one was leaving late and we were able to go up the fairly steep narrow rode to the top of the mountain without worrying about passing.  After setting up camp we left to meet Carina and Ezra for pizza at Asheville Pizza and Brew.  It was delicious as always and we had not eaten there in quite some time.  After dinner we went to the Hop Creamery for flights of icecream.  It was delicious tasting the different exotic flavors.  We had a quick tour of the production room.  We had no idea the freezing process was so involved.  It requires several different freezers of varying temperatures to keep the texture perfect.  We returned to the campsite and were able to sleep with the windows open and enjoy the night air.

The next morning Monica and Nigel slept in and Luis and I went ziplining with French Broad again.  It was as fun as usual.  We had a great group and a very entertaining lady named Brenda from Georgia that kept us most amused.   We stopped at the next town, Marshall, on our way back to the campground and ate lunch.  A very small quaint town.  After arriving back at the campsite we all changed into swimsuits and lotioned up and went to Zen tubing arriving just before they take their last group at 4:00.  They drove us up river and we had a relaxing 2 1/2 hour tube back down to the parking lot area.  We hurried back to camp, cleaned up and met Carina who had just finished work at Hopey & Co.  We met at Bellagio Bistro (Italian) just towards downtown Asheville from our campground.  The campground is on the very edge of Asheville just outside of Weaverville.  The food and company were good.  We went back to the campsite with Carina coming up to watch the end of the sunset over the valley.  Beautiful.  

Sunday, we broke down and packed up and left the campground around noon.  We met Carina at the Ingles in Weaverville where we parked the pod and she drove us the next block to the park with the waterfall and watermill in Weaverville.  It was very scenic and no hiking involved.  Then we drove the pod to the Ingles in Asheville and put Nigel at Carina's apartment.  We all rode in Carina's car to the LAB (Lexington Avenue Brewery) for lunch, followed by a walk to the new location of the French Broad Chocolate Lounge. We finished with a shopping trip to Hopey & Co.  Then she drove us back to the Ingles.  We departed for home around 4:00.

We really liked the facilities at the campground and full hookups.  Very convenient to Asheville.  What a breathtaking view!  We would love to come back and stay a week sometime.  :)

 

Notes:
 
  1. Sites P1 through P8 have incredible views (specially during sunset).  They are on the edge of the cliff which does leave you exposed to the winds.  There are also no trees so n very hot days you would have no cover.
  2. Sites D9 through D15 have trees behind them so the views are limited.  They do have a lot of tree cover which is nice during the day if spending the day outside.
  3. Sites D16 through D19 are not the best but are still nice.
  4. The WiFi coverage seems to stop around D13.  So if Wifi is important, do not stay in D14 or D15.
  5. The road up to the campground is long and narrow.  Rigs going in the opposite direction would be a challenge (but doable).  To avoid problems, they discourage late departures.

We stayed at Campfire Lodgings Site D15.


September 11, 2015 - Croatan National Forest - Cedar Point Recreation Area (408 miles)

We left Friday around 11:00 a.m. to head to Swansboro.  We arrived at Cedar Point Campground in the Croatan National Forest.  We stayed in Loop A, site 5.  We filled up our fresh water tank before we unhitched since they don't have hookups at each site only electric.  It was muggy and warm and we were happy for our A/C.  Sally and David members of (PALs) were also just arriving.  They had other plans for dinner out, but we met several power squadron members (Margaret and Burt, Connie and Greg, Terry and Becky, and Bonnie and Dave) for dinner at the Swansboro Food and Beverage Company (near Yanna's).  It was very good!  We returned to the campground and Teresa and Richard arrived around 8:30.  We had a campfire and retired with the AC on due to bugs and heat. 

Saturday we breakfasted in the POD and put our suits and lotion on and headed to Hammocks Beach State Park for a large scale kayaking event to Bear Island.  Many joined in from the RSPS and also Brad and Kim and Neal and Laura (plus 3 kids).  Also Bernardo and Nosario and their 3 children plus a friend of their daughters.  From RSPS we had Burt and Margaret, Connie and Greg, Bonnie and Dave, and Wilbur and Morgan.  A few of these chose the ferry, but many of us kayaked.  So we had quite the flotilla.  My sister Debbie caught the 11:30 ferry and met us for lunch on Bear Island.  Due to impending threatening weather we were hesitant to stay too late on Bear Island, and left around 2:00 to head back.  I let Debbie paddle back in the tandem with Luis since she had never kayaked.  I rode the ferry with Monica who was still recovering from a bad cough.  Some of the RSPS members went to dinner again.  We returned to the campground to join the PALs.  We were intending a cookout, but due to dark skies went for pizza instead.  David and Sally's son Christopher and his girlfriend and friend also joined us for pizza.  Debbie pitched her tent and stayed the night.  Most of the clouds blew over and we had a campfire after all and retired.  It did rain during the night but not too long.

Sunday a.m. we went for fritters to the Carteret Cafe with the PALs plus Deb.  A delicious time was had by all.  After breakfast Richard and Teresa had to pack it up to head back.  I had sandwich items and we shared for lunch with Sally and David.  David and Luis went for a long kayak adventure on the White Oak River.  Luis said it was a more challenging day of paddling than the former day to Bear Island and back.  We cooked all the food intended for the previous night for dinner (Sally and David cooked the marinated chicken and we cooked some filet mignon).  So we had quite the feast followed up with the s'mores on the waffle cookies.  Also, the front had finally come through and the humidity and temperature dropped considerably.  It was pleasantly cool for sleeping although I refused to open the windows on the camper due to terrible bug bites which were mostly no-see-ums and some mosquitoes.   I wasn't taking any chances they would come in.  Also something bit my toe (probably some type of ant) and it was all swollen up.

Monday we leisurely packed and did the cleanup and unhook process.  The campground host said we could leave later than noon, so we got ready and left at noon to eat at Yanna's.  After huge hamburgers and more fritters we returned for the final hookup and emptying of the tanks.  We had not showered in the camper, but did run the toilet alot and water to wash hands, and brush teeth and clean dishes two times.  This was just about the full usage of the fresh water tank for the three days/three nights.  We hit the road and arrived home in time to empty out the camper and return it to Kerr Lake.  

Great trip.  Always love going to Bear Island! 

Notes:
  1. All the campsites are nice with 30 and 50 amp service.
  2. There is water at the dump station and between a few sites, but not at each campsite.
  3. Campsites 1, 2, and 4 are very nice and private with shade.
  4. Campsites 5, and 8 are very nice but have little or no shade.
  5. Campsites 6, and 7 are very nice and private with shade.  These are also next to water spigots.
  6. Campsites 9A, 9B, and 10 are very nice and private with shade.  These would also be good for group camping.
  7. Campsite 11 is very nice and private with shade.  It is also next to a water spigot.
  8. Campsite 12 is very nice and private with shade.  It is also next to the bathrooms so it would be good for dry camping.
  9. Campsite 14 is very nice and private with shade.  It is also next to a water spigot.
  10. Campsites 15 through 23 are nice but far from the bathrooms.
  11. Campsite 24 is very nice and private with shade.
  12. Campsites 26A, 26B, and 27 are very nice and private with shade.  These would also be good for group camping.  Site 27 is also next to a water spigot.
  13. Campsite 29 is very nice and private with shade.  It is also next to a water spigot.

 We stayed in campsite 5 in loop A.

September 25, 2015 - Country Boys RV Park Madison, GA (822 miles)

Luis and I drove to Madison from Raleigh at around 8:30.  Monica did not come with us.  Nigel came.  When we arrived in Madison we checked in at Country Boy's RV Park.  There are many long term RVs there and a limited row of spaces for short term guests (spaces 53-62).  The campground is a bit like staying at a KOA.  You have a space with full hookups, WiFi, cable and they have a large restroom facility with nice showers.  Nothing scenic about the park and it's right off the highway.  For us it was perfect as we were very close to the Southern Cross Guest Ranch where we spent most of our time horseback riding and eating.  We also went to Madison downtown and walked a bit and had coffee.  We stayed two nights and rode at the ranch Saturday and Sunday morning.  The rain was with us most of the weekend so we only got to ride in the pastures, but it was still enjoyable.  Carlos and Dorene were supposed to join us, but Dorene was not feeling well.  We had a great relaxing weekend and would definitely stay there again to go riding at the ranch.  At the ranch we rode the same horses both days and we enjoyed them.  Luis rode Sally and I rode Dandy a beautiful Palomino with a lot of personality.
 
Notes: 
  1. Restrooms were nice and clean.
  2. Full hookups.
  3. Great WiFi signal even out on the edge of the campground.
  4. Sites are close together and have no privacy.
  5. There are not picnic tables.
  6. The cable TV pedestals are only in every other site.  So a longer coax cable (35 feet) might be needed depending on which site you are in.
 
We stayed in campsite 65.

October 30, 2015 - Howard RV Center, Wilmington, NC (260 miles)

We took the R-POD to Howard RV Center to get it winterized. We spent the night at the dealership.

November 13, 2015 - Campfire Lodgings, Asheville, NC (574 miles)

We (Luis, Pattie, Monica and Nigel) went with PALs (Pierries, Arthurs and Lopezs) to the Campfire Campground perched on the edge of Asheville, Friday, November 13.  Monica had ice skating in the a.m. so we did not arrive until the early evening.  It was a quick set up then we headed over to downtown.  On the road just off from the campground we saw Moes BBQ.  We gave it a try and were pleasantly surprised it was very reasonable and good.  We joined Carina at Sonia, Vonya, Masha and Spike which she had costumed at Salt Attic Theatre showing in the 35 Below black box at the Asheville Community Theatre.  Carina ended up wardrobing for the children's theatre show going on upstairs, but Ezra joined us.  Then we went to the Chocolate Lounge for an after dinner dessert.  After that we retired to our campsite (D12.)  The temperature dropped towards 30 and we were already winterized, but stayed comfortable and warm with the portable heater and the propane when it got really cold.

The next morning the Pierries were up with the sun (and Luis) to go run/walk their race.  We slept in (well me and Monica) and lazed about a bit.  Carina had to wardrobe the children's matinee show.  So we joined the Pierries' and Arthurs for shopping downtown and lunch at Tupelo Honey.  It was an hour wait so we had plenty of time to shop first.  After lunch we went back to the campground to let out Nigel and after her matinee commitment, Carina and Ezra joined us to watch the sunset and then go to dinner at Neo Burrito.  Carina was dozing so we left them to go to JoAnn's and then home and we retired to the campground where Richard was just starting a nice fire.  Monica retired to the camper and Luis and I joined the Pierries and Arthurs for an evening of relaxation watching Richard compete with the neighboring campground for best fire.  We determined they must have been using lighter fluid or something.  LOL.

Sunday Carina had to work at Hopey so we did our breakdown, checked out and headed to town. We stopped at Moes and got there early enough to park the camper and go in to eat at 12:00 when they opened.  It was delicious again.

We had a leisurely and uneventful drive home. On the way home PALs were texting and setting up a week's stay in July 2016.  We all booked our reservations.  Good to know we already have that to look forward to. :)

Notes: 
  1. Sites P1 through P8 have incredible views (specially during sunset).  They are on the edge of the cliff which does leave you exposed to the winds.  There are also no trees so n very hot days you would have no cover.
  2. Sites D9 through D15 have trees behind them so the views are limited.  They do have a lot of tree cover which is nice during the day if spending the day outside.
  3. Sites D16 through D19 are not the best but are still nice.
  4. The WiFi coverage seems to stop around D13.  So if Wifi is important, do not stay in D14 or D15.
  5. The road up to the campground is long and narrow.  Rigs going in the opposite direction would be a challenge (but doable).  To avoid problems, they discourage late departures.

We stayed at Campfire Lodgings Site D12.