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Old 01-19-2017, 03:19 PM   #1
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Hi from ETN

Hi!
New Oliver Owner
Love to camp locally and our favorite place is Florida.
Anyone interested in camping on the Florida Panhandle, West Coast or the Keys?
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Old 01-21-2017, 06:50 AM   #2
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Hi, Pat. Welcome to FL. Sanibel Island has a private campground called Periwinkle. I hope to do a Keys trip this summer, and want to someday tour the wolf sanctuary near Chipley FL, which would be an overnight. Haven't researched parks yet.
Do you belong to Boondockers Welcome or Harvest Hosts? Alternatives to the standard pack-em-in and charge-a-bundle campgrounds
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Old 01-21-2017, 07:00 AM   #3
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we did a day trip to Sanibel Island last February, it was a traffic nightmare. Henderson Beach SP in the panhandle is nice. We are heading to Stephen Foster SP in north Florida next weekend, then to Fort Clinch on the east coast.
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Old 01-21-2017, 08:04 AM   #4
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In March we hope to spend several days at Fort Pickens (Pensacola).
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Old 01-21-2017, 08:16 AM   #5
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We are thinking heavily about going to the Marathon Seafood Festival and camp at Grassy Key. Rated well for one of the top Key campgrounds. Dates for the festival are Sat 11 Sun 12 of March.
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Old 01-21-2017, 08:18 AM   #6
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We've stayed at Fort Pickens several years ago. If you haven't been there already you will certainly like it. Has fairly spacious sites. Beware of the sand spurs. Our Cairn picked up many on her paws when we went hiking.
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Old 01-21-2017, 08:31 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver_Elite2 View Post
Hi!
New Oliver Owner
Love to camp locally and our favorite place is Florida.
Anyone interested in camping on the Florida Panhandle, West Coast or the Keys?
I neglected so say we are from East Tennessee.
LOTS to see and do here. This part of the country has some of the most stunningly beautiful vistas.
We highly recommend Big South Fork National Park. Bandy Creek Campground (TN) and Blue Heron Campground (KY) are fantastic.
This is an unspoiled mountainous area similar to the Smokys (without the tourist crowds.)

Speaking of the Smokys. I am sure everyone knows about the devastation of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and other areas of Sevier County. Please consider giving to the Dolly Foundation. She is giving each family who lost their homes 1K a month until they get back on their feet. We love Dolly here! She is quietly a huge supporter of the County of which she was born and raised.

I used to teach in Pigeon Forge. It is a very poor area and the fire added to the poverty and suffering. Sevier County is a very peculiar place.. Just a block off the Dolly Parton Parkway are shanty-type dwellings. There are the very rich in the County, little middle class, and some very poor folk working for minimum wage or tips.

Dollywood made it through the fire OK. The cabins surrounding did burn down. Please do keep visiting the Smokys to help in their recovery that will take a very long time.

Hope to see yall in TN or FL. Looking to camp here:
Topsail Hill Preserve FL State Park Gregory E Moore RV Resort Mon May 08 May 15 2007
There are also some very nice State Parks in the same area of the Panhandle. Hope to go to the Panhandle as much as possible as the year progresses.
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Old 04-20-2017, 09:39 AM   #8
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Fort Pickens

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Originally Posted by Paul O. View Post
In March we hope to spend several days at Fort Pickens (Pensacola).
Paul did you go to Fort Pickens?
How was it?

We checked there are no sites long enough for our rig.

I did stay there with our popup and really liked it.
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Old 04-20-2017, 09:56 AM   #9
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The FL Keys, Panhandle FL, and West Coast FL

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mitzi Agnew-Giles View Post
Hi, Pat. Welcome to FL. Sanibel Island has a private campground called Periwinkle. I hope to do a Keys trip this summer, and want to someday tour the wolf sanctuary near Chipley FL, which would be an overnight. Haven't researched parks yet.
Do you belong to Boondockers Welcome or Harvest Hosts? Alternatives to the standard pack-em-in and charge-a-bundle campgrounds
There are some snazzy Parks down in the Keys.
We are probably going to camp in the Keys here:
Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park - Key Largo
Grassy Key RV and Resort
and
BlueWater Key RV Resort - Key West

This Fall.
Going back to our absolute favorite in FL for 2 weeks in May and again in Aug - Topsail Hill. Must make reservations about 11 mo. in advance. Rate #2 campground in America.

Anyone ever camped at both Henderson Beach and Grayton Beach?
Which one did you like best?

Want the higher end RV Parks on the way back home using the West Coast of FL. Any suggestions?
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Old 04-21-2017, 07:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver_Elite2 View Post
Paul did you go to Fort Pickens?
How was it?

We checked there are no sites long enough for our rig.

I did stay there with our popup and really liked it.
Yes, we spent a week at Fort Pickens campground, loop A. Next to us was a huge bus, completely filling the pad and parking their (not very small either) pickup truck in the guest/overflow parking area. They do accommodate the big ones, but not on every site. Some oak trees have low branches. They rebuilt the showers since two years ago (nicer now), but there used to a little store and laundry outside of the CG and it is closed now.

It is beautiful there, I would highly recommend it.

On the way home we stopped at the GSMNP and loved it. The fire cleaned up the woods, but the edge of town, Gatlinburg, has a lot of charred remains.
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Old 04-21-2017, 07:55 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Paul O. View Post
Yes, we spent a week at Fort Pickens campground, loop A. Next to us was a huge bus, completely filling the pad and parking their (not very small either) pickup truck in the guest/overflow parking area. They do accommodate the big ones, but not on every site. Some oak trees have low branches. They rebuilt the showers since two years ago (nicer now), but there used to a little store and laundry outside of the CG and it is closed now.

It is beautiful there, I would highly recommend it.

On the way home we stopped at the GSMNP and loved it. The fire cleaned up the woods, but the edge of town, Gatlinburg, has a lot of charred remains.
We love the Smokeys if people see their way clear people still need our help. The Dolly fund helps those still recovering. It is good to support the mountains by our visits to bring in tourist funds to support those who are working. People here depend upon visitors. The Great Smokey National Park is the most frequently visited National Park. Losing even any acres was a real tragedy. Wildlife was killed and people's homes went up in just a few minutes.

Glad you liked Fort Pickens. We stayed there many years ago in a popup. Naturally the lots were plenty long enough.

I tried making reservations on line putting in RV 25 ft and it came back (for summer) nothing available. I wonder if the longer RV sites are gobbled up quick? I'll try again and let people know. Hoping to make a 4th trip to FL. Ready to go on first, another in August, one planned late fall to the Keys. Would like to have one early fall somewhere in the Panhandle.

Too bad they closed down the campstore. I do remember that. Great that the restrooms are pretty new now. Always a good thing.

Thanks Paul for answering. Going back down to FL again this year?
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Old 04-22-2017, 02:53 AM   #12
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Paul,
We "rediscovered" Fort Clinch. As a child my husband camped there. Unusual for the East Coast of FL has the sugar white sands comparable to the Panhandle. This may be our 4th trip this year we can plan.
The State Parks of FL book many many months ahead of when there are sites to book.

Clinch seems to have bigger sites. Around late Sept. they have some open site. Check it out on Reserve America.


Also ran into Carabelle FL east of Appalachi, FL looks good too. It's located around the Panhandle to the bend of the West Coast.
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Old 04-27-2017, 01:00 PM   #13
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Greetings from Miami. We camp in the Keys quite a bit. In fact, my wife is down there now with two of her out-of-town sisters, although not camping.

There are four state parks in the Keys, all have trailer camping with electric and water. The bad news is that you need to book as far in advance as possible because they are always full during "the season":

Pennekamp (Key Largo)
Long Key (S. of Islamorada)
Curry Hammock (Marathon)
Bahia Honda (near Big Pine Key)

We like Long Key because every site is on the water (we like to kayak) and it's a reasonable drive from us. Pennekamp is closer and while it's nice, it can be a bit of a zoo. However, it has the sheltered waters of Largo Sound which can be nice on a windy day. Lots of activities, rentals, boat charters, etc. available. We haven't camped at Curry Hammock, but we have checked it out and we liked what we saw. I believe there are some trailer sites on the water. Also, one of the nicest beaches in the Keys is in Marathon, Sombrero Beach.

Bahia Honda is beautiful and deserves a visit even if you don't camp there. Some sites are on the water.

If you're planning to be in Marathon, Curry Hammock is the closest.

Please send me a message if you'd like any further Keys info.
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Old 04-28-2017, 04:09 PM   #14
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Greetings from Miami. We camp in the Keys quite a bit.

There are four state parks in the Keys,

Pennekamp (Key Largo)
Long Key (S. of Islamorada)
Bahia Honda (near Big Pine Key)

We like Long Key because every site is on the water (we like to kayak) and it's a reasonable drive from us. Pennekamp is closer and while it's nice, it can be a bit of a zoo. However, it has the sheltered waters of Largo Sound which can be nice on a windy day. Lots of activities, rentals, boat charters, etc. available. We haven't camped at Curry Hammock, but we have checked it out and we liked what we saw. I believe there are some trailer sites on the water. Also, one of the nicest beaches in the Keys is in Marathon, Sombrero Beach.

Please send me a message if you'd like any further Keys info.
Thank you so much for your response.
We definitely want to camp at John Pennekamp.

It doesn't have sewer right?
We find we can only make the black tank limit 2 1/2 days.
Time to do somewhere with a sewer next.

Thinking of going the next stop part of the way to Key West.
Still hunting somewhere there w/ sewer.
Then stay at Bluewater at Key West.

We are going down the East Coast and probably camp at the State Park in St. Augustine the first night.

Still wondering where to stay on the way home going up the West Coast.
Again we have to keep sewer in mind.
Would like a more top-drawer place w/ a sewer but that usually means being in the tight parking lot style. Really do prefer the State Park kind but generally they don't have sewer. Just like w/ Pennekamp we can stay at a non-sewer a day or two but must hunt for a sewer site at least for 1 night.

Our favorite camping ever is at Topsail Hill State Preserve in the Panhandle. Has the open and wild Florida but with all the RV fancy part amenities and large lots with sewer.
Even has a tram to the beach and a very nice pool. Going there 3 weeks this year.

Again thank you so much!
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