Florida 09 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-10-2009, 01:08 PM   #1
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We're baaaaack! after three months of Florida State and County Parks- from middle Keys, Gulf Coast, Springs, Atlantic shores and the inevitable "on the road" KOA's.
Great weather...three rainy days in three months...and lots of wind, especially in the Keys!
As always, a sage green Trillium attracts a fair bit of attention and provides a conversation starter with like-minded campers.
We met Storm & Beth from Washington State, Kathy and Doug Roach in "the Pearl" who joined us in Fort DeSoto C P. Met up with our friends John and Joan in their Casita at Koreshan S H A where they volunteer. and connected with some Shasta and Scotty restorers too.
Observations: it's getting harder and harder to get reservations in Florida State Parks...but it is well worth the effort.That said, there are still those who pull into a park in March and expect to stay for a week! Spring breakers (usually one-nighters) can really cause havoc! I've learned to have all the park personnel phone #'s ready and call earlier than late when booze parties start next door. Finally, I always pack too much stuff!
We enjoyed Long Key, Koreshan, and Fort DeSoto, along with Gamble Rogers and the venerable Anastasia. First-timed at Blue Springs S P and saw the shuttle launch from that vantage point inland...WOW! Also caught the tail end ( pun intended) of the Manatee migration. Only one left was a Sea World release named Rita. 3000 lbs and towing a GPS buoy from her tail flipper. We got to canoe alongside her in The St John river and in the spring run.
Lugged the tandem bike on the back of the Road Toad and enjoyed some biking in Pigeon Key, Fort DeSoto, and Sanibel Island. Van-topped the old Sportspal canoe and got a fair bit of touring in Pennekamp, Collier- Seminole, Koreshan and Blue Springs.
We even managed to find our way back to Windsor despite the I-75 construction and weird signage en-route to the Ambassador Bridge...I LOVE my GPS!!!
Next year...same again- with less stuff and a better stowage plan for the Sienna.
Everybody tells me we have to "do" Newfoundland. Maybe this will be the year!
Nice to be back...Alistair
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Old 04-10-2009, 01:39 PM   #2
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My, you folks seemed to have seen more of Florida than us and we live here Ha!! Actually we use the state park system extensively as it half price for resident seniors and that really helps out when we occasionally visit the state owned rv resorts such as Top Sail Hill Preserve at about $40.00 a night. www.floridastateparks.org/topsailhill One of our favorites is Fort Desoto County Park which you mentioned. We are now planning to become snow birds so we can spend the summers closer to our kids but come to Florida in the winter time, probably bouncing form one state park to another. We have our place up for sale now
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Old 04-11-2009, 05:37 AM   #3
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Al,
Glad you made it back safe and sound (?) this year. I will look forward to another visit with you next year in the Keys and the other Florida state parks next year. Couldn't see the lift off from Panama City, one is worth seeing. No complains about the wind, I have had both snow and wind here in Kentucky since I returned. Until next year.

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Old 04-11-2009, 07:33 AM   #4
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Hi to Jim & Peggy and to you too Bill. Yes Florida State Parks are gems. Jim, maybe we could get Bill to adopt us so we could get those Florida Senior Residents rate
Just bought some next years bookings and we Canucks certainly are taking an exchange hit on those reservation
The good news was that US gas prices were 80 cents a gallon cheaper than in Canada
Cheers...Alistair
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Old 04-11-2009, 11:30 AM   #5
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We have a few friends from Ontario, Canada in the park where we live, had dinner with one of the couples last night, not sure what town their from but they said they do all their shopping in Detroit and just have to go across the bridge. Another couple lives in Carleton Place and a 3rd couple just across from Buffalo, NY. We've been to Carleton Place and its a right pretty area.
I put your names in with Gov Crist for the 50% off price, let me know when he contacts you

Have you stayed at either Oscar Sherer or Myakka state Parks??? we have stayed at Oscar Sherer but never camped at Myakka although have visited there a time or two.
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Old 04-11-2009, 01:52 PM   #6
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Thanks Bill...I'll let the Guv'nr know we're "connected"
Cross-border shopping used to be a national sport...an 80 cent "loonie" means you have to find really big bargains!
I have stayed at Oscar Sherer SP but found the sites smallish, opportunities for biking and canoing limited, and beach is across the Tamiami at a very busy public beach. We haven't returned. If I remember Myakka SP, the campgrounds are older and , if you're in the middle section...quite crowded. The lake boat tour and the treetop walk were enjoyable.
Collier Seminole is OFF my list! There's a park that has reached it's "sell by" date...crowded, noisy,close to the road, and small sites with little privacy.

Love the Keys- all four parks-, Koreshan is a gem! Gamble Rogers is beautiful,Blue Springs is fascinating as is Silver River (another gem!)
Anastasia is big but nice private sites in the RV section (avoid the first two "tent only" loops)...a looooong way to the beach but what a beach it is!
Used to love Jonathan Dickinson but they tell me that the "Pines" area has lost most of the pines and is less than desirable. The river sites ar OK but small and some are prone to flooding in rainstorms. The canoe ride up to Trapper Nelson's is a great way to revisit "Old Florida".

We don't hit the Panhandle these days. Too cool in early Jan on the way down and to many tornado warnings in late spring on the way home. That said all the parks there are super!
Hopefully we'll cross paths when we camp next year
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Old 04-11-2009, 07:20 PM   #7
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we stayed at Collier Seminole just one time and it seems that a lot of the same snowbirds use it year after year. they arrive at the same date, stay 14 days then as a group go to the next state CG then go back to CS again, Highlands Hammock in Sebring is a nice park, the same people stay there every year and they all volunteer to host pot luck suppers and breakfasts etc. gtreat bunch, we have a gathering of Casita's (about 12-15) there usually one weekend in late Jan or early feb, always a good time. We enjoyed Curry Hammock a couple of years ago but you can't get in there, its always reserved, wife and I had 3 computers set up where all we had to do was push 1 button to reserve and we always got beat out, I should have mentioned that to the guv while I had his attention.
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heading sloowly up the eastcoast to our next 2 month (Aug and Sept) camp hosting gig at Camden Hills State Park in Maine
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Old 04-16-2009, 02:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
We're baaaaack! after three months of Florida State and County Parks- from middle Keys, Gulf Coast, Springs, Atlantic shores and the inevitable "on the road" KOA's.
Great weather...three rainy days in three months...and lots of wind, especially in the Keys!
As always, a sage green Trillium attracts a fair bit of attention and provides a conversation starter with like-minded campers.
We met Storm & Beth from Washington State, Kathy and Doug Roach in "the Pearl" who joined us in Fort DeSoto C P. Met up with our friends John and Joan in their Casita at Koreshan S H A where they volunteer. and connected with some Shasta and Scotty restorers too.
Observations: it's getting harder and harder to get reservations in Florida State Parks...but it is well worth the effort.That said, there are still those who pull into a park in March and expect to stay for a week! Spring breakers (usually one-nighters) can really cause havoc! I've learned to have all the park personnel phone #'s ready and call earlier than late when booze parties start next door. Finally, I always pack too much stuff!
We enjoyed Long Key, Koreshan, and Fort DeSoto, along with Gamble Rogers and the venerable Anastasia. First-timed at Blue Springs S P and saw the shuttle launch from that vantage point inland...WOW! Also caught the tail end ( pun intended) of the Manatee migration. Only one left was a Sea World release named Rita. 3000 lbs and towing a GPS buoy from her tail flipper. We got to canoe alongside her in The St John river and in the spring run.
Lugged the tandem bike on the back of the Road Toad and enjoyed some biking in Pigeon Key, Fort DeSoto, and Sanibel Island. Van-topped the old Sportspal canoe and got a fair bit of touring in Pennekamp, Collier- Seminole, Koreshan and Blue Springs.
We even managed to find our way back to Windsor despite the I-75 construction and weird signage en-route to the Ambassador Bridge...I LOVE my GPS!!!
Next year...same again- with less stuff and a better stowage plan for the Sienna.
Everybody tells me we have to "do" Newfoundland. Maybe this will be the year!
Nice to be back...Alistair
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Old 04-17-2009, 04:38 PM   #9
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Well I see my original post but no comments
This wouldn't be Miki from Miami and her Casita that we met in Long Key, would it?
On a different note...we finally have unpacked everything from the Toad and stashed it everywhere in the house and garage. I take WAY too much stuf
Already got six weeks of our 2010 trip booked! four weeks in Curry Hammock, Koreshan, and Gamble Rogers
Got to find a few more weeks in the Keys to finish the "package"...It'll come!
Now to follow Booker's helpful hints and get a bag awning installed this summer. Got to replace the rail about six inches higher to make it fit. Oh well, a fellow's got to have a project on the go
TTFN... Alistair & Inge in the Road Toad
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Old 05-18-2009, 11:47 AM   #10
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Hey Alistar Joe and Debra here we live in a little town called Summerfield Florida...about 466 people We are located about 17 miles south of Ocala right off of highway 301 and 7 miles off of I-75 exit number 341....we have (as I was told by a very dependable source) a 1968 boler that gets pulled by a 1959 Chevy Suburban carry-all. We love to take 1 or 2 days here and there and go and get our feet wet and camp wether we need it or not. If you or anyone else is stuck for a overnight we have 3 acres and we have hosted many a camper that were either too tired to continue or didnt have the energy to find a campsite for the night. I can give you water and electric and in my shop there is a bathroom. I have a VW shop where I restore air cooled VW's, a hobby that has gotten the best of me. But i like the fact that I walk 60 feet and I am at work. I hope to posting pictures soon of the Boler and Burb being that the Burb gets out of the body shop soon....hope to see anyone real soon......Joebugs50[at]yahoo.com
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Old 05-18-2009, 03:07 PM   #11
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Hi: Joe... Is your Boler a Flat top ie: no raised section in the center of the roof??? I believe that the 1st. year of production ('68) Bolers were all flat tops. Aprox. 100 were built in '68. Then the molds were altered to give interior height and more support to the roof span.
I learned to drive in a 59 VW. GREAT car!!!
We hope to be able to spend some or all of the winters in various parts of Florida when we retire... Depends on the cost of health insurance!!!
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 05-18-2009, 03:23 PM   #12
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Quote:
Already got six weeks of our 2010 trip booked! four weeks in Curry Hammock, Koreshan, and Gamble Rogers
Got to find a few more weeks in the Keys to finish the "package"...It'll come!
Now to follow Booker's helpful hints and get a bag awning installed this summer. Got to replace the rail about six inches higher to make it fit. Oh well, a fellow's got to have a project on the go
TTFN... Alistair & Inge in the Road Toad
Alistair, what dates did you get for Curry Hammock how in the world did you ever get booked into there. The only times we can get there is afterall the snowbirds leave. maybe the state likes getting the full price, ha.
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Old 05-18-2009, 03:30 PM   #13
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Hello Joe & Debra...I guess when I camped Blue Springs SP I was almost in your back yard.Thanks for the offer of a place to stay...mighty neighbourly of you. We have met so many nice folks who are connected with this forum!
Looks like next winter we're going from DeSoto CP to Flagler direct...but we'll keep Summerfield in mind.
Like my friend Alf, I cut my driving teeth on Vee dubs. Took a '60 out to my parents on the left coast...Victoria...in '63. Drove the Trans Canada when the asphalt was still drying!
I've owned about a dozen since then.
One of our campers at Bolerama pulled her Boler there with a Super Beetle
Come on down Alf...this ain't a dress rehearsal you know. You got that fancy new 5er just waiting to be parked under the palms
Cheers...Alistair and Inge
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Old 05-19-2009, 12:20 AM   #14
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Thanx, Alistair, for the interesting narrative of your winter adventures. We've enjoyed camping in a few Florida state parks, but only in the panhandle and northern portion of the state. Too crowded and $$$ the farther south we looked.

Joe & Debra - we like Ocala and may visit your area again one of these days, as DH has a cousin in Lady Lakes. Thanx for the offer of FGRV hospitality - we might darken your door one day Take care, L 'n D

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