Lake Wappapello State Park

Good morning. What a quiet night. Not even an owl hooting. The only sound we heard was the furnace turning on and off. It looks like we have only a slight chance of rain this morning and then cloudy sky’s with a high of only 49. Tomorrow sunny and a high of 53 if we decide to stay one more day.

Day 121. We had decided before we left the Walmart in Walnut Ridge, Arkansas that we would like to find a campground not too far into Missouri, which would be around lunchtime. We were hoping to get into the Corps of Engineering Campground in Greenville, but we could not get anyone to answer the phone so we did not know if they were open or if they had any available sites. We knew there were State Parks in the area also, but again we didn’t know if they were open. We decided to do what we do best and just wing it.

I was having a hard time finding the exact location for the Corps of Engineering Campground. Our Corps book gave vague directions and google maps was not cooperating either. Usually I have no problem getting directions. As we drove we saw a sign for a State Park and decided to go for it. We had no idea what we were in for. The road to the park was “white knuckle” the entire way. We went up very steep inclines, down the same “hills”, no shoulders, straight down drop offs, and the road wound in and out and all around. We were going deeper and deeper into the woods. It seemed like it took forever to find the park. Our favorite type of driving-not.

When we finally arrived and saw cars and people we took a sigh of relief. We just sat there for a few minutes to let our stomachs settle before going in to see if we could get a site. I know I teased Clyde for not wanting to go into the mountains, but if we were both this nervous driving in the hills of Missouri, I don’t think I’m cut out for going through the mountains in our motorhome either.

The park ranger was very nice. She told us yes they were open and to just go find a site and set up. They use the honor system to pay. After you set up you fill out an envelope, add your cash or check and drop it in the box. We were happily surprised to find out it was only $8 a night with 30 amp electric for us, as senior citizens. They have a dump station and a place to fill up with potable water if we need it.

We got back in our motorhome and took another deep breath. We had to go up another very steep hill to get to the campsite. I think we were holding our breath, hoping we would make it all the way up. Like The Little Engine that Could, “I think I can, I think I can”.

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Road to Campsites

There was only one other camper and they were leaving as we were coming in. We had our choice of any site. The problem was all the sites seemed to be next to a cliff, not easy to get into or very level. A couple of sites were pull-through. We decided one of those would work best for us, as we knew they were long enough for us to fit into. We had just gotten set up and leveled out when it started to rain. Boy did we time that good. We only drove about a hundred miles, but some of them were very stressful. We were glad to be set up and have a place to relax for a couple of days.DSC_0022DSC_0025DSC_0026

The park itself is deep in the forest on Lake Wappapello. So far we haven’t seen much wildlife. It is so tranquil here. A perfect place to be one with nature. And, Patty Pepper won’t have anyone to bark at. Loving our lifestyle.

Until next time,

Kathryn

 

 

 

Walnut Ridge

Good morning. We are no longer in the warm sunny region of the country. It got cold last night. So cold we even had to turn the heat on! It was 54 in our motorhome. It’s a good thing we have a generator. I cranked that baby on, turn on the heat and the coffee pot. Priorities you know.

Day 120. We ended up going a lot further than we had originally planned. The weather was dark, dreary and sprinkling with the prediction of more rain and colder temperatures. There was no point in stopping. Who knew what the weather would be later or if it might even get worse than it already was. We had hoped for nice weather and getting some sightseeing in, but that was not to be. Steve was right. It looks like we should have stayed another week in the fun and sun of the RGV (Rio Grand Valley where we were wearing shorts and sandals. Unfortunately, I guess I will have to put them away for a bit. Not too long I hope.

I can’t believe we have driven all the way across Arkansas. We ended up in the small town of Walnut Ridge. There is a Walmart here, not a super Walmart, just an old-fashioned regular Walmart. It is a very nice store with very nice friendly people. We are parked along the outer edge of the parking lot that is next to a field. We have plenty of room to put out the bed slideout. It is a very quiet Walmart with no truck traffic. The only thing we heard during the night was the rain and the trains going by. There is a Don’s Steak House within walking distance, which we did not try.

Our drive here was uneventful and boring. We had areas of construction and miles and miles of open dead fields waiting to be plowed and planted. We saw very few cattle or livestock of any kind. I guess that’s why we just kept driving. Nothing of interest to stop and see. When we did pass through Hot Springs and Little Rock the weather wasn’t cooperating with us so we just kept going. The drive might have been different if we had gone a different way, but Clyde is afraid of driving through the mountains in our motorhome pulling a car. Maybe another time. This is only our first year.

Today we will be driving through Missouri. Hopefully we will find something of interest there to draw us in for a couple of days. After looking the map over we think we will take the scenic drive up through the state and hopefully we will find a park that is open (some are closed for the winter) for a night or two. Loving our lifestyle. Have a good day.

Until next time,

Kathryn

 

 

Texarkana

Good morning. We had thought we would be staying put for today, but our plans changed like the weather. Today we will be heading east into Arkansas. My thoughts are instead of going further north, if we go east we can stay with the nicer weather a little longer. Again, we don’t have definitive plans, we are just winging it.

Day 119. Yesterday we left the Walmart in Wharton, Texas and drove next door to the Bucee’s for coffee and a bite to eat. That place was almost as busy in the morning as it was the night before at dinner time. We were on the road and headed north before 8:30 am. The weather wasn’t bad for traveling, just not as nice as the day before. It was overcast and gloomy, which is better than thunderstorms, high winds or snow storms.

We drove through Houston without any problems. We hit some traffic, but not anywhere near as bad as it would have been on a week day during rush hour. We also encountered road construction and those wonderful concrete barriers along the sides of the road that Clyde just loves-not. I think the last time we had to drive through that type of construction for as long as we did was in Ohio. Not fun. Clyde calls it his white knuckle driving.

Just before 11 am we came across our first rest area. Patty Pepper was not settling down and was trying to tell us she needed to be let out.  We also needed to stretch our legs. We aren’t as young as we used to be you know.

The route we were on took us through long spells of nothing but farmland and grazing cattle. When you are driving a motorhome that is pulling a car, finding a gas station that you can get into and out of without problems is not always easy. We still had a half of a tank of gas, but with the lack of gas stations or anything else around, we decided to keep our eyes open for the next station with decent prices and where we would be able to pull in and out of easily. We found a Texaco in Marshall, Texas at $2.29 a gallon.

For those of you who have asked or are just wondering how expensive it is to drive a motorhome, I have figured it out to be anywhere from $3.17-$3.70 a mile depending on the cost of the gas. I guess we’d better like where we are going and enjoy the scenery.

Our plans were to stay at a Corps of Engineering campground near Texarkana, Texas for the night and possible the next, but that was not to be. There were four campgrounds in the area and they were all closed due to flooding. That meant we needed to find another place to stay for the night. The Walmart in this area was one that does not allow for overnight parking, so that was out. Besides, we wanted and needed a shower.

As it was getting late (almost 5 pm) we decided to pull into a campground we saw along the side of the road with a big sign that says Texarkana RV Park. It’s a clean park with gravel parking sites. Some of the sites are pull-through, which we are using one of so we don’t have to unhook the toad. We also have full hook-ups, 50 amps and free Wi-Fi if you wanted it. The park also has a pool. Clyde said the showers were really nice; big and clean. There are also washers and dryers if you needed them and a game room with tables to play at and a TV. We were able to use our Good-Sam’s discount which was nice, but it was still more than we like paying for a one night stay. But, again we do what we have to in a pinch. We are just south of Texarkana, Texas. We would stay here again if we needed to.

I’d better get a move on. We’ve got to figure out where we are going today. For sure it will be in Arkansas. Loving our lifestyle. Have a great day.

Until next time,

Kathryn