Northbound March 2017

We had hoped to travel to Florida from the Mississippi coast, but since it was spring break, it was impossible to find any openings in the state parks. I looked into some of the private RV parks, but I was unwilling to pay the exorbitant fees for these crowded resorts. So northbound it is.

The sun peeking through the woods in Twiltley Branch Campground
One of many beautiful sunsets over Lake Okatibbee at Twiltley Branch Campground

I found a beautiful ACOE (Army Corps of Engineers) park a few hours north of the coast, but had to wait 48 hours to confirm a reservation. So we needed to find something in between. Opa checked with Harvest Hosts and found a couple of interesting options, one that was boon docking at an alpaca farm. Well, that’s the only one I heard. I was delighted to get an opportunity to stay at an alpaca farm! So we headed off to A Stroka Gene-us Alpacas.

Making friends at the alpaca farm

The owner, Mary was very delightful and welcoming. She introduced us to the alpacas, roosters, chickens, goats, alpaca guard dogs and their puppies. Then she showed us how she made and wove the fur into yarn. And then I got to browse in her shop, where I had no difficulty finding something to purchase. The problem was controlling myself. I walked away with a handful of things for next Christmas and 2 1/2 dozen delicious  fresh farm eggs.

Boondocking at the alpaca farm

Mary gave us a choice of where we wanted to park and I chose to be near the animals which included roosters. I enjoy hearing roosters crow in the morning. It never occured to me that they would serenade us all night long! The next morning we enjoyed delicious fresh eggs for breakfast. I went out and got some more pictures of my new animal friends, chatted some more with the delightful owner, Mary, and then drove off to our next destination. What a wonderful opportunity to spend the night at A Stroka Gene-us Alpacas!

Sunset before the storm from our campsite over Okatibbee Lake
Campsites along the lake

Onward to Twiltly Branch Campground, an ACOE park. Well, this was not on the coast, but what a gorgeous campground on Okatibbee Lake! The site I reserved for us was not ideal, but the host was able to put us into one of the walk-in sites that was available.

Our new site was lakeside, very long, with 50 amp electric, water, picnic table, fire pit, trash bin, and lantern hook. The campground was a beautifully wooded area as well. There were lots of places to walk or ride bikes. Most of the lake was undeveloped. Apparently there were alligators in the water, but we didn’t see any. And there must have been abundant fishing because there were many fisherman!

This red headed woodpecker shared our campsite
Red headed woodpecker

After we got set up on this beautiful Friday afternoon, we discovered that we had a little truck problem. The nearby dealership was closing and would not be open until Monday morning. Without knowing how long it would take to get serviced, we took no chances and extended our stay another day. Then we looked at the weather and realized that there were lots of storms to dodge on a drive towards home.

Our beautiful lakeside campsite at Twiltley Branch Campground

Rather than drive, we extended again and stayed put where there was a little rocking and rolling from the winds, but nothing too serious. And then we just wanted to enjoy a few more days in this beautiful area, which included a lovely lunch In Meridian and a trip to the Okatibbee Lake Dam Office. We also enjoyed several beautiful sunrises and sunsets and time to just sit under the trees and watch the fisherman fish. Finally, we decided that Saturday, April 1st, would be a great day to head home.

A misty sunrise viewed from our campsite at Twiltley Branch campground

Unfortunately, we did not accomplish our goal for going east on the coast, but that’s okay. Driving the coastline of Louisiana and through Mississippi was a new adventure for us. In fact, all of Mississippi was a new adventure for us. And we enjoyed it all!

Our drive home only took two days. We drove through 5 states the first day and then spent a night wally docking in southern Illinois. It was actually a much more pleasant drive home than last year when we drove through lots of cold days with some snow. Although, I really missed Tucson and an opportunity to see family and more friends. But, bottom line is that we arrived back home safe and sound and are already dreaming of new adventures.

Mist over the lake

4 thoughts on “Northbound March 2017”

  1. Happy to see this post. Love the photos – wow – so many great shots! Makes me want to follow in your footsteps!

    1. Thank you, Carol. The alpaca farm was a part of the Harvest Hosts. It was an amazing place and the owner was a gem. You would have loved it! That COE park was also an incredible find. A great place to spend time at. First time in Mississippi and it was a real delight. Wouldn’t mind going back some day.

  2. Enjoyed your beautiful photographs. Look forward to seeing the ones from Seminole Canyon and Big Bend, Texas.

    1. Thank you, Deborah. It was really great to meet you at Seminole Canyon. Be sure to check the beginning of our blog from when we were getting started too. We’ve learned a lot since then. Happy traveling to you and I hope our paths cross again!

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