It was finally time for Pearl to hit the road again, and not a moment too soon. The first seriously cold air of the season blew in just a day before we left western North Carolina. We'd spent a few weeks in my home state visiting my family, doing a variety of RV projects (we'll have a later post on that), and getting some routine medical/dental appointments out of the way. We always enjoy our time in NC and seeing my folks, but it was good to get moving again, and in the right direction: SOUTH!
You may have heard about all the wildfires in western North Carolina. While there we didn't see any fires as we were east of the mountains, but we certainly smelled and saw the smoke. Depending on the wind direction, a few days were really hazy and bad, with "code red" air quality. We wouldn't have wanted to ride our bikes even if we'd had the time
-- which we didn't!
Here's the biggest project I did while Barry worked on motorhome renovations: I papered my mother's powder room in the same textured beadboard wallpaper we'd used on an accent wall in Pearl. This is very cool stuff; It looks just like wood but weighs less, and no sawing! It took quite a few days with the prep (over existing floral wallpaper) and then very careful (sloooooow) paper hanging, but it turned out nice and changed the whole appearance of the room. Unfortunately I forgot to take a "before" photo, but here's the after. I think it turned out good, and Mom seems very happy, so I call that a win-win!
The campground where we stay when visiting my folks is in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, but situated in a deep valley sheltered among very steep hills and thus is always the coldest spot in the entire area. The morning we were to leave, the low was 24F. Yep, we were ready to get outta there. Brrrrrrrrr!
We had a long travel day as we wanted to get to Florida two days before Thanksgiving to avoid traveling on that awfully busy Wednesday. Barry drove 260 miles, our longest driving day in Pearl so far, to Magnolia Springs State Park south of Augusta, Georgia.
While driving through South Carolina, we purchased the cheapest gas since leaving Florida last spring -- $1.76.9, which includes our 3 cent/gallon Good Sam loyalty discount at Pilot and Flying J stations. First time we've paid less than $100 for a fill up since last March!
Magnolia Springs State Park ~ Millen, GA
This was our first visit to this park and campground. With only 23 sites, the campground is small compared to most state parks we've visited, The park itself is large, though, and has a lovely small lake and bubbling spring.
We arrived around 3 pm on a Sunday afternoon and found the campground almost full, a bit of a surprise to us. Usually campgrounds clear out on Sunday, but not today. I guess a lot of folks decided to spend Thanksgiving here or were on their way to their final holiday destinations. The campground does take reservations, but we did not bother making one since we'd seen a few sites still available when checking online.
The sites are not assigned, but not all allow rigs over 25', so we only had a couple to choose from in this single-loop campground. Fortunately we found a nice one available.
All sites are back-in and have 30-amp electric and water hookups. No sewer hookups, but there is a dump station in the park. Sites are gravel with picnic tables, dirt pads and are fairly level. There is good site separation, providing a little privacy, but no low-level foliage between sites. I appreciated the large "back yard" behind our site for walking Paisley and the beautiful woods beyond.
We got two bars of Verizon 4G LTE so internet was fine. We also picked up approximately eight over-the-air TV stations,
We paid $29 with a $6 Senior Citizen (62+) discount (thanks, Barry!) This includes a $5/day parking permit, which seems to be typical at most state parks.
There are canoe rentals available at the lake, and it looked to be a nice place for paddling. There are alligator warning signs, but we did not see any. The park also has several nice hiking trails through the woods, which we took full advantage of. I'll have another post with those photos, so stay tuned!
Emily & Barry
We're a long-married, early-retired couple who are currently traveling as nomads with no fixed home base. After years of living in North Carolina (Emily's home state), we spent 18 months living oceanfront on Ambergris Caye, Belize, a year road-tripping the US in a Honda CR-V, a year in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, and are now roaming North America in our 32' motorhome, Pearl, following warm weather whenever possible.
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