South to the sun
On Sunday we took our lives into our hands again and braved State Highway 95 South. We could in fact have got on this artery back in Conway and driven the 1500 miles along its route all the way to Florida as indeed many “snowbirds” do. Some though, refuse to use it because of congestion.
However, once you get over the overtaking and undertaking, the huge trucks bearing down on you at speed, (see photo), and the tension of being on the motorway then it’s quite a good way to clock up the miles and make good progress towards your destination. Scenic it ain’t. We did join the big boys in a truck stop for lunch, along with several other RV’s, late travellers like ourselves. Most have been long gone and are now soaking up the sunshine in Florida. We were heading for Sante State Park in South Carolina, located beside Lake Marion, the first time we have used a State Park as a stop. It proved to be an oasis of calm, though the water had many signs of debris floating silently in its waters, from the storm that had passed through when we were further north. None the less the lake was beautiful, with a deciduous cedar forest running across its centre; it is a haven for wildlife. We met up with Doug, who was on his own delivery trip taking his rig south, with his friend Brian. Both experienced RVers, it was time to swap stories and enjoy a beer together. We hope Doug’s proud of his protégées. Doug & Brian set off early Monday morning to complete their journey and made it well into Florida to a campsite south of Cape Canaveral by 4:30pm. We spent the day walking and exploring the state park but we did drive into the nearest settlement of Elmore. Guess what, we parked up in this one street town and found that we got a wireless internet signal better than any so far. Taking advantage of this we checked emails and spent some time on “Skype” – we must have looked very suspicious sitting in the car talking to our computer!
Tuesday we headed off again, it wasn’t the easiest of sites to negotiate, not really a ”pull through” because of the trees. However when it was time to leave Malc did a tremendous job reversing like a pro between the trees and out onto the road! We headed for Myrtle Beach next, on the coast and a bit north!! Wrong way I know, but only just. 50 miles on that I-95 again, but then we turned across country. We’d hoped to see interesting scenery but apart from some cotton fields it was mostly flat and uninspiring. We did however reach a stretch of road works (just after I had happened to mention we hadn’t seen any!) and you know what they say about America and size… the cones were like oil drums and there were literally hundreds of them. The single lane stretches were barely wide enough for us and when it reverted to two way traffic trucks coming the other way created a push of air that threatened to run us off the road! OK I’m not the driver, but that doesn’t mean I just sit there and take no notice! Again Malc did a brill job.
Our journey had started in warm sunshine; in fact as we stood waiting for 65 gallons of petrol to glug into the tank we were positively hot! The route was straightforward except for the last 8 miles or so and guess what? By the time we got there it had not only started to rain but this and the spray had made visibility poor. There was a lot of traffic too, some a little less stable than others (see photo). We made it though with no hitches and now find ourselves in the largest site yet, 800 sites and hundreds of holiday/permanent homes. Everyone gets round the place by golf cart -.Bizarre!
But its right next to Myrtle Beach itself…60miles of white sand. Lovely. I can hear the ocean as I write this…
Then we began to explore, Vegas without the glamour comes to mind. We’re just glad it’s quiet season!
Time too for some housework, did the laundry… facility has 100 washing machines and 100 driers, didn’t need all of them. We also got some of the grime off the car and bus too. The day was rounded off at Captain George’s all you can eat seafood restaurant followed by a trip to the movies – Casino Royal. Tomorrow we’re going to Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede Dinner & Show…