Have you ever wanted to sell everything you own and just "take off?" Travel the country's back roads, paddle down a meandering stream, experience breath-taking mountain views, walk among 100-year old trees, and just marvel at America's beauty? That is the dream that my partner, Betsy, and I decided to make a reality. This blog describes our adventure. The food we eat, people we meet, sights we see, and the enjoyment we find in traveling.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Saying Goodbye to the Florida Panhandle

Incredible sunset reflecting in Western Lake and the sand dunes.
Our time in the panhandle of Florida is coming to an end and we have just a few more days before we continue our journey westward.  We spent a great two weeks at Grayton Beach State Park – our all-time favorite campground and park.  Thanks again to Rhonda and Susan for the reservation at this much desired park.    
Western Lake at Grayton Beach State Park.
An RV sand castle.

Our site could not have been better – a view of Western Lake, shade on the patio in the afternoon, and great neighbors.  A couple from Michigan, Paul and LoAnn, moved in next to us after we were there a few days and we got to know them right away.  Like us, they have dogs, three to be exact.  Kimber their 7-month old golden retriever became Spirit’s best new friend.  Every day when Spirit came out of the motorhome she would run over to the neighbor’s site looking for Paul, LoAnn, and/or Kimber (she liked them all equally).  We convinced Paul to bring Kimber to the dog park and the fun really began. We were all satisfied when the dogs spent the rest of the day sleeping.
Kimber and Spirit.  

They introduced us to marrow bones for Spirit to chew on and we introduced them to Bruno’s Pizza for us to chew on.  Paul was a master at campfires (after all he is a retired fire fighter) and we spent a couple nights sitting around the campfire talking about Africa, Michigan, RV’s and dogs.  To say thanks for the many great things they did for us, and gave us, we invited them over for a dinner of New Orleans-style barbeque shrimp.  After we loaded them up with shrimp and butter, we introduced them to Catdaddy Moonshine to wash it all down.  Just another great couple that we got to know and hopefully we see somewhere else. 
Barbecue shrimp, wine, and great new friends.
Pizza buffet at Bruno's is dangerous - my favorites are taco pizza, pepperoni, and cheese.  
Still had room for more - I just had to try the 6-cheese pizza. Yes, I ate five pieces of pizza and a dozen sugar coated cinnamon dough knots and did not have one ounce of guilt.  Although, I was very FULL!  We will miss you Bruno's Pizza.

Small pool, but nice and clean.
From Grayton Beach we loaded up and made the short 10-mile drive to Santa Rosa Beach where we stayed at Topsail Hill State Park and Gregory E. Moore RV Resort.  Yes, that is correct there is a state park that is an “RV Resort.”  For those of you non-rv’ers this is pretty unusual.  There was nothing rustic about this place. The state park bought the campground adjacent to the park and you definitely get the feeling of being at an rv resort and not a state park campground.  There is a swimming pool, tram to the beach, shuffle board, cable television, paved roads and sites, fishing lakes, etc.   The park has miles of hiking trails and paved bike trails but the biggest draw is the three miles of white sand beach and crystal clear water.  The beach can be a little bit crowded when the campground is full (especially during spring break) but if you are willing to walk a little bit you can find a quiet spot.  We sure will miss this part of Florida but the journey must continue and we look forward to seeing old friends, meeting new ones, and exploring the country.

One of many lakes available for fishing (or letting your retriever swim).
Some of the campsites back right up to the lake.
The park has many spacious cabins available for rent. 
Many miles of paved biking/hiking trails.  
All sites are paved and have a paved patio.  A definite plus at a campground.
Our site was fairly wide with a nice grassy area behind it.  Spirits own backyard.

Time for Spirit pictures...

Thanks Paul for this picture.  She is chewing on a "Texas toothpick."
Hiking in Point Washington State Park.
Time to break the rules and let the pup off leash for retriever training.
Great trail through the piney woods
of Grayton Beach SP

Tired pup.


  1. Gosh, look at the size of Spirit's tongue in the last photo! :))
    Seeing all your photos makes us wish we were still there--it is snowing as I type this here in Montana!

  2. Friends stayed at Topsail earlier this year; just one night, but they loved it as well. Safe travels.


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