January in the Keys - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-16-2010, 10:59 AM   #1
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Hi Eggers, we made it from snowy cold Canada to non-snowy but cool Keys...but it is warming nicely (75 today).
Curry Hammock S P is beautiful and immaculately maintained. We were lucky to get two stays of fourteen days, and three weeks in Long Key S P
Let me tell you how my learning curve rose sharply on the way down here...
-took the Sienna van& Trill through a car lane at US custom s...always did...apparently the new configuration of the southbound lanes on the Ambassador Bridge at Detroit are not designed for vans towing. I got scolded severely! No signage- I was just supposed to know this! I squeezed through...barely... then couldn't get into the exit toll gate . Next year I'm taking the Tunnel!
-memory foam mattresses and toppers go solid as a board in sub-zero temps !!! We moteled it instead of camping in TN and GA....first time in 12 years of snowbirding!
-the price difference between a KOA and a Days Inn shrinks remarkably when you subtract the cost of a breakfast.
-Black ice under overpasses and on bridges made our Sienna wheelspin like crazy and scared the "stuff" out of us the first few times . I soon learned to coast under the overpasses and over the bridges and resume throttle once the front wheels were on solid pavement. It's amazing how a little bit of tongue weight can unload the drive wheels. Things got better once we passed Cincinnatti.
Only four eggs in the CG last night...me, Jim & Peggy's Casita, a Bigfoot, and one other overnighting Casita. For the rest, we are surrounded by behemoth mohomes and 5'ers...but the owners are friendly and curious about us and our creature comforts. Needless to say there are many Open House tours of the Road Toad.
Happy trails...Alistair & Inge
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Old 01-16-2010, 11:16 AM   #2
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Name: Des and Diane (D & D)
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Hi Alistair & Inge,

Many thanks for the "heads up". We were planning on going that route towards the end of March on our way West. But, won't "they" be overly concerned about propane tanks in the tunnel? Might we be best to just wait it out in the truck lanes?

And regarding black ice, were you using cruise control, or, does this happen in regular "drive" also? And, how do you manage to coast on the "up side" bridges?

Glad to hear (see?) that Florida is warming up for you. Continue having fun!

Des & Diane
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Old 01-16-2010, 12:00 PM   #3
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Hi: Alistair Camelford... Thanks for the advance "Scold" WARNING!!! Is there a Bus/RV. lane to use??? We are planning to attend the Scrambled Egg Meet in Shipshewana Ind. in June as the Emily portion of Bolerama is off this year. We would be using either Pt. Huron or Detroit to enter the U.S.
Our Florida vacation got dropped due to our strike in the fall. Lost a bundle and will probably not make it back so we may tug on down to Myrtle Beach in late Apr. Hope it warms up for you...and travel safe. Is it ok to say "Black Ice"???
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 01-16-2010, 06:53 PM   #4
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Wow, quite a trip!

I tried to get camping reservations at Curry Hammock, Long Key S.P. and Bahia Honda, all with no luck. I ended up having to rent a house (boo!). Would you mind telling how you managed it? I would love to try again, and succeed this time!

Thanks,
Raya

PS: Have a wonderful stay!
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Old 01-20-2010, 03:30 PM   #5
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Hello crew...at the bridge they usually flag trailers off to the right through the truck lanes...tunnel is ok ...propane just has to be off...black ice- not on cruise just normal acceleration to maintain speed- just back off throttle and let the rig use its own momentum...book the keys 11 months in advance- on hi-speed at 8:00:01
library closin up- got to go Cheers
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Old 01-21-2010, 10:13 AM   #6
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Hello crew...at the bridge they usually flag trailers off to the right through the truck lanes...tunnel is ok ...propane just has to be off...black ice- not on cruise just normal acceleration to maintain speed- just back off throttle and let the rig use its own momentum...book the keys 11 months in advance- on hi-speed at 8:00:01
library closin up- got to go Cheers

Making reservations is without question "the right thing to do" but that much planning ahead really destroys any spontenaity for traveling.
We seldom make reservations and we have found that our Scamp is a great asset to offset our foolishness, since so many times the campgrounds have found space for us where the bulgemobiles fear to tread.
We got a beautiful site right on the water in the Keys a couple of years ago because it was hard to maneuver a bulgemobile into the site.
At Myrtle Beach we got a great spot only a few sites from the beach because a large tree intimidated the "big rigs". The bulgemobiles provided shade and protection from the wind and we had the tree to shade the picnic table.
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Old 01-21-2010, 04:35 PM   #7
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We use verizon dsl and live in Florida and my wife and I sat down with 2 laptops with sites we wanted on one and 2nd choice on another set them up so all we had to do was hit the enter button and we missed every one of them for 3 days we did this and nothing, we decided to stay north of the keys as usual. don't like the keys no way
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Old 01-29-2010, 10:31 AM   #8
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I hear you Bill. There is a vast conspiracy among the campers who frequent the three Keys SP's. Many double and triple book their sites...they have a network of children, friends, and employees hitting the Reserve America site at a millisecond after it opens! They hold on to some of these bookings for months and dump them at the last minute. Me, I just surf the net all year and pick up their leftovers. I cant be bothered driving out for a half hour each day to a wifi spot to try reserving, and us Canucks cant use a Canadian air card server in the US...and buying a 2 year plan for 3 months a year is out of my budget range! So we pick away at the reservation process all year...and every few years we just head out to Texas and Airzona instead.
Floyd, the Florida state parks are supposed to hold 10% of their sites for walk-ins...but in reality there are so many workcampers and volunteers using them that there are rarely any available .At Long Key, there are 60 sites and 5 sites are assigned to volunteers!!! sites 1 to 10 are tent sites and sometimes they are available as walkin but only a few are big enough for an egg.
Cheers to all of you
Alistair and Inge in the Road Toad
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Old 02-12-2010, 02:21 PM   #9
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Hi gang...just an update from the Keys.We are doing our last two days at Long Key, then ready to go to Curry Hammock for two weeks before going to Koreshan at the beginning of March. Sunny and windy today...the rangers came round to tell us to batten down the hatches for tonight's 40 mph winds. Got everything packed and strapped down...some sandbags on the legs of my satellite dish so I can watch the opening ceremonies of the Olympics tonight
Word around the campsites is that NObody is getting bookings for next year! Makes me with no wireless feel a bit better
Starting to look like AZ and TX for next winter. I was sorry to read the posting on closings of AZ parks. Might have to go to Mexico...anyone want to be the wagonmaster for an egg eggscape?
Cheers from Alistair & Inge in The Road Toad
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Old 04-01-2010, 03:55 PM   #10
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Well- Reality Check time...we are back in Canada after three months in Florida Yes...20 degrees F below seasonal...but NO SnoW
We met a few FGRV posters...Jim & Peggy from KY, Theresa P and Dennis from New Brunswick,Doug & Kathy Roach from N C, and some friends from Quebec in their Trill 1300's.
Reflections on this year's trip...I got to join the Key West Dragon Boat Club's twice weekly tours as the Crazy Canuck Steersperson...saw the endangered Right Whale in Gamble Rogers S P (only about 350 left on the planet)...canoed the Suwannee River (50 minute against the current and 10 minutes back to the dock ...but discovered that on the Estero River (Koreshan S P ) digital cameras are not waterproof when you slip out of the canoe ,and, at gas stations, if you want to "pay at the pump"- you'd better have a zip code (postal codes don't work neither does 90210 !) ,and ...finally us Canadians can now get an air- card for their computer by buying a pay-go plan from Virgin Mobile
Now the fun starts- booking next year's winter escape...see you in Long Key in Feb 2011
Happy trails...Alistair & Inge in the Road Toad
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