02/21/19 Naples-Flamingo Everglades.

DAY #124

Up by 9:00 am and getting ready to pick up stakes once again.  I’m so fortunate that nothing went wrong during my time here (fingers crossed).  The truck ran super, even after putting about a zillion miles on it, and driving it under all kinds of conditions. It didn’t take long for the miles to add up, given the campground was so far away from anything.   Since leaving on October 19, 2018, I’ve put 10,000 miles on the truck, 7000 of those from driving around while the trailer was at the campsite.

Putting the generator in the back of the truck I thought; I’ve used the generator for over 100 hours so far this trip and other than adding gas, it’s run flawlessly, I couldn’t ask for more. 

The trailer has held up remarkably well so far in the journey.  I was concerned after reading about people’s horror stories on a Facebook group.  They make it sound like every trailer is little more than junk, and nothing works, or everything brakes, and the trailers are constantly in the shop, yada, yada, yada.  Everything is working as well as can be expected and serving me quite well.  It’s a nice little home away from home. (now watch, the next blog will be me crying about all my bad luck and how unfair it is).

One area that I’ve recently had a concern about, the batteries.  After getting a full charge, they will only last about 12 hours before the board in the fridge (which requires a current) stops and the fridge turns off.  They appear to be draining faster than maybe they should be. I’ll have to do some checking,

Getting the trailer ready for towing and yeow, it is humid out.  I’m sweating like a pig (I know, they don’t really sweat) and it’s not even 10 am.  Todays a long run compared to recent moves.  Should be on the road about four hours, destination; Flamingo-Everglades National Park.

Over half of the way there, I took roads that had been on before.  This helped make the drive feel not so long and besides, it was so scenic and enjoyable.  I got a kick out of a sign about midway through the drive across the northern part of the everglades letting us know we were now in Miami-Dade County.  I didn’t realize how big the county is, it’s huge. 

I didn’t get the same kick when I stopped for gas (just to top of) early in the drive, and found gas was 70 cents a gallon more than in Naples, 20 miles away.  In Naples it was 2.29 per gallon, and there it was $2.99, lousy bandits!     After crossing the northern part of the everglades, the path led south.  The area outside and alongside the everglades is agricultural and heavily Hispanic.  You see a lot of small-scale nursery’s growing plants that people will use in landscaping their yard, now I know where all the tropical plants come from, well, at least the ones from the USA.  There also a lot of produce grown around these parts, most of its large scale.

Papayas.

Made it to Florida City, the gateway to the everglades.  It looks to be a working-class town with lots of Hispanic and African Americans (at least the part of town I was in). I kind of miss the old white folks (being facetious).  Followed the farm roads (per google) and arrived at the entrance of the park with time to spare (huh?). Once there, I still had 38 miles to go before getting to the campground, talk about a big park. I found the road through the park to be in nice condition, smooth pavement the whole way and 55mph for most of it.  The area is so open that you feel at times (when no other cars are around) that it’s just you alone in this big ole world, it’s really a neat feeling.

The weather was quite warm and very, very humid, almost sticky, as some would say.  I was tempted to break down and put the A/C on in the truck and trailer. But then I wondered, would I have to use it all the time to be comfortable?  Would it make it twice as bad when not using it?   The temperature and humidity were still tolerable for now, and I wanted to see how long I could go without using the A/C.

It took about 45 minutes driving through the park before reaching Flamingo-Everglades, home for the next ten days.  I checked in, and off to the site I went. 

Before setting up, I stopped and emptied the black & grey water tanks and filled the fresh water tank.  The campsite is a pull through, so it made getting in easy.   Setting up the rest of the trailer has become routine, and everything went off without a hitch.

Good things about the site/campground;

  • It has electric and the bathrooms/showers are right across the road.
  • The sites are good size and provide some space, even if it’s mostly open.
  • Has a dump site on the premises so you don’t have to travel with all that yuk sloshing around.
  • One of the cheapest places I’ve stayed.

Not so good things about the site/campground;

  • Showers are cold water only. (although with as hot and humid as it is, that might not be a bad thing).
  • No OTA TV stations.
  • No Cell reception.
  • It is a long drive into and out of the park.

I’ve downloaded a couple books on Kindle which I have on my tablet, so I can use the time I would have been watching TV or being on the internet (because there isn’t any!!!) to further expand my mind, yea, let’s go with that.

Not much shade provided by this tree.

Took a shower (it is so nice to have) and called it a day.

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