Today is day 363 of the Nowhere To Be Project and my husband and I are wondering if we have a problem. We embarked on our winter west coast RV trip with the mindset of relaxation. We’ve found that we generally have a habit of trying to do too much. This trip would be different, we said. We would take our time this time, we said. We’d thought we’d finally learn how to slow down and take in the beauty of life on the road. We headed out of Colorado right after Christmas (in the middle of a blizzard) and planned to return on February 28. We all know what they say about the impossible combination of plans and life, don’t we?
Our original plan allocated a full month in California, not to mention lengthy periods in Arizona, Oregon and Washington State. We thought that four or five day stretches per stop would be pleasing. We were wrong in many, many cases. We were going nuts in most places after a day or two. We were also quite literally frozen out of some planned stops with abnormally frigid storms walloping the west, one after another. With frozen pipes, floods, and blizzard after blizzard we motored on, taking on each day with zeal. After months on the road and countless reroutes, we’ve come to the conclusion that we may have travel-specific attention deficit disorder. To support the self diagnosis, I present the following snapshot of our recent past:
San Francisco RV Resort: We heard about this park from a fellow RVer in Sedona. He described the sound of the waves as he slept and we were in, canceling our reservation at Candlestick RV Park. Too bad half of the park has fallen into the ocean since his stay. We found this out a few moments after our arrival in our “ocean front” (more like a slab of eroding pavement that is cordoned off by chain link fence) spot. In addition, it isn’t really in San Francisco, but is in Pacifica where we rented a car and spent five days tooling around the area and visiting with relatives.
Caspar Beach RV Park: This Crescent City RV park reminded me of a summer camp that might have been featured in a 1980s scary movie. It was isolated, and oddly laden with potholes and creepy dilapidated wooden structures. This stop ended up as a one and done (we had originally planned on four nights, but hightailed it after one).
Crescent Beach RV Park: The never-ending rain we experienced during our time in California didn’t help this place out at all. Every inch of Crescent Beach RV park was waterlogged which made for an irritating muddy mess. Add to that the uneven pad and yucky bathrooms and you’ll see why we didn’t last very long in Crescent Beach.
Bullard’s Beach State Park: Having never been to Oregon, I had no clue what to expect. In my mind’s eye, there was endless coastline. I guess that’s why I was looking for a beach at this state park in Bandon, Oregon (with “beach” in its name no less). I eventually found the beach. It was just a couple miles down the road. Ironically, despite its beachless atmosphere, water was the name of the game at this state park. Our spot was totally flooded. This made our rig feel more like Noah’s Ark than a motorhome. Again, this became a one-nighter despite the fact that we had planned to stay for several days.
Pacific Shores RV Resort: This Newport, Oregon RV park has forever changed us. It will be the one to which every other RV park is compared. It was outstanding in every way! The oceanfront grounds (view of lighthouse included) resembled a country club with level pads, pavers and top notch landscaping. The facilities were similar to those you’d find at a nice resort…heated pool, hot tub, sauna, locker rooms, and the laundry room to end all laundry rooms! This place warranted a stay that was much longer than one measly night!
Holiday RV Park: Being a guest at this Phoenix, Oregon RV park felt like a punishment. The park is littered with clutter and run down rigs. The bathrooms do not offer hot water which actually came as no surprise given the surroundings.
Sommerville RV Park: We were on our way to Bainbridge Island, Washington when we received a call from the park ranger at Fay Bainbridge State Park (where we planned on spending four days). He explained that the park was unexpectedly shutting down due to unmanageable ice conditions. We pulled off the highway and decided to turn back. We ended up in Coalinga, California for the night. Sommerville RV Park was on par with Holiday RV Park (see above), but somehow even filthier! One night here was one night too many for most anyone.
Van Horn RV Park: After tiring of the constant rain and cold on the west coast and being robbed at Hotel Palomar in Arizona https://nowheretobeproject.com/day-355-robbed-at-a-kimpton/, we made the snap decision to drive east. This brought us to Van Horn, Texas and its namesake RV park. This Good Sam stop is no frills, but welcoming. The food in the cafe was tasty and the shop had a few of the items we were in need of (but no dog food???).
Azalea Acres RV Park: We kept heading east and rolled into Robertsdale, Alabama for a night. Azalea Acres is in an isolated area with nary an azalea in sight. It is close to the interstate though which is a plus when all you need is a break from the road. Other pluses include friendly staff, clean bathrooms and level parking pads.
Coastline RV Resort: Eastport, Florida is a tiny town in the panhandle that was obliterated by Hurricane Michael in October 2018. Coastline RV Resort is either brand new, or somehow dodged Michael’s wrath completely. The park has two sides: campground and resort. Both sides offer across-the-road water views. Still chasing the luxury of Pacific Shores RV Resort, we opted for the resort side. It wasn’t quite on par with Pacific Shores, but it was tidy and had spa-like bathrooms with enormous seamless glass showers! Coastline is in the middle of nowhere which can be a pro or a con depending on what you’re seeking. For us, one night was plenty.
We’ve seen a lot, some good and some bad, and yet we haven’t really found a place where we could linger endlessly. Perhaps we’ll find it some day. Maybe it just isn’t who we are as people, or as travelers. I guess there’s just one way to find out. On we go…