I know it's hard to believe, but I have no photos for today.
We went to bed at 9:00 p.m. last night after our fishing trip, and we didn't get up until 8:00 a.m. this morning. I missed the sunrise and didn't get out for my morning bird walk.
Instead, we got some work done, got our exercise in, and started planning our next stop.
Linda's Mom called and they thought Adam could possibly get to leave the hospital in Ft. Lauderdale on Monday. Since they were a long way from their home in The Villages with no transportation, we started working out the logistics just in case they needed us to give them a ride. We just needed to figure out the best way to get them home and get our rig to Arcadia for the upcoming Boondocking Rally.
We were thinking we were going to go hang out a few days at Monument Lake in the Big Cypress National Preserve before going to Arcadia. But with this new development and a pile of laundry that needed to be done, we decided to find a place that would cut down the distance to Arcadia but also put us in a position to take care of my in-laws and get back to civilization to do laundry.
So, I started looking at Google Maps for areas that looked to be at least half way to Arcadia, but not too far from Ft. Lauderdale. We had to plan for the possibility of making a trip from Ft. Lauderdale to The Villages and then back to pick up our rig and then on to Arcadia.
Most of you know I'm not a big fan of private RV parks 'cause the sites are too close together and they are usually priced far higher than public campgrounds. I did look at Passport America parks, but I knew that most South Florida campgrounds and RV parks don't offer the 50% discount in the winter months.
So, I went to my trusty public campground search tool: Ultimate Campgrounds.
The Ultimate U.S. Public Campground Project has almost 22,000 public campground listings, and I can look at locations of public campgrounds without having to go to multiple websites like Recreation.gov for federal campgrounds and state park websites for state campgrounds. AND, my favorite additional benefit is that it lists and maps lots of the hard-to-find city and county campgrounds which are often less expensive and nice.
I looking at the Ultimate Campgrounds map for the area I was searching, I noticed two local parks at the southern tip of Lake Okeechobee.
So I checked out South Bay RV Park which is a Palm Beach County public RV park with 72 paved sites and full hook-ups for under $30 a night. As you might imagine, it was booked solid.
I then checked out Torry Island Campground a few miles away. It's a Belle Glade city campground inside the Lake Okechobee dike on the water. They have full hook-ups and sites with water and electric only. The full hook-up sites are about $29 including tax, and the water/electric (50 amps) sites are about $24 per night including tax. When I called, the nice young lady told me she might have one full hook-up site, but there were plenty of water/electric sites. Perfect.
So, that's the plan for tomorrow. It's about 140 miles leaving us about 100 miles to Arcadia, and it will put us in a decent position to go to Ft. Lauderdale and The Villages and back before going to Arcadia.
With that out of the way, we turned on the inverter 'cause I wanted to watch some college basketball. We were pretty consistent this week using about 100 amp hours of battery power a day. And our solar panels got us fully re-charged every day by the afternoon. We never had to turn on our generator, and that always feels like successful boondocking to us. :)
Also, with our new AquaGo water heater from Truma, we wanted to see what effect that might have on filling our gray water holding tank. Ordinarily, we would use the bathhouse, but we made a point not to this time.
In our six days, we took a dozen three-minute showers and didn't fill our 45-gallon gray tank. Part of that is due to the fact that we have a low-flow water pump to help conserve water when we're taking showers while boondocking.
When we're on full hook-ups with good water pressure and flow, we fill our gray tank with about four 15 - 20 minute showers. We're taking more of those long showers now that we have endless hot water with the AquaGo. :)
So, it's been a great week of boondocking and it was good to do it for a week before the week of the Boondocking Rally. By the way, we still have a couple of openings due to some last minute cancellations.
The basketball game went into overtime and I missed our last sunset, but I think we have enough photos and memories. :)
Later, Linda's Mom called back. A couple of their friends from The Villages made arrangements to pick them up on Monday. We're still going to carry out our plan and be ready just in case, but it appears the logistics issues are taken care of.
We once again went to bed early and read ourselves to sleep.
Tomorrow, we leave Flamingo. It's a very reluctant departure for me, but Linda is ready. However, I know we'll be back when I need another warm, winter nature break. :)