Week 44: Zoom Christmas Party, 1st Time Boondocking and Port Aransas
Updated: Mar 22, 2021
This week started out slowly. We washed all the things getting ready for our next move. Even the puppies got their beds and blankets cleaned! We also got to participate in a Zoom Christmas Party with Mandy and Kendrick of Mandy Lea Photography. We were lucky enough to participate and hang out with them since we support them on Patreon. I won the best holiday drink contest with a Dirty Girl Scout. I won a metal print of one of her photographs of the Grand Tetons, I chose that print as it reminded me of when the adventure bug first bit me. My mom was crazy enough to drive me and my brother across the country from Massachusetts to Montana and we got to see those mountains for the first time. We also were small children in a car for seven days and you can imagine how obnoxious we were by day 3. lol
On Thursday, which was Christmas Eve, Dom had the day off but I had to work so he spent the day organizing our outdoor stuff and preparing to leave. We finished packing everything up early Friday morning and left at 10AM. We got a late start on the road due to having to put air in all eight tires. None of them were really low but all needed some air due to the hot and cold temperatures lately. We drove six hours, with stops, to The Whistling Duck Vineyards and Winery.
They are a Harvest Host location and were our first boondocking experience. We set up between the driveway and the pond and used the land to level the trailer since the site was actually pretty level. We had to drive back and forth a few times to get it just right. Once we were all set up for the night we cooked macaroni and cheese with sausage in the outdoor kitchen, after making sure it was ok with the hosts. Harvest Hosts require you to be 100% self contained, meaning that you have to be able to do everything you need to inside your rig. After dinner they invited us to a fire out back with their family and the other Harvest Host RVer that was there for the night. We had a great time getting to know everyone. We were worried about our battery lasting all night and being able to keep lighting the furnace. But we went to bed in the quiet, dark, deep country under a sky full of stars with the furnace keeping us warm.
We woke up Saturday morning and everything was still working. We still had power, there was water in our fresh tank, and we had made it through our first night of boondocking! We took a walk with the puppies around the pond, took some pictures, I found some ball moss on a downed tree branch, and then we tried to make coffee in the French press. Our first time with the French press was not great. We bought fine ground coffee instead of course ground coffee and it just clogged the filter. We cleaned it up and packed the RV to go. Before we left we went to the winery to taste and buy some wine. We ended up each getting a bottle of our favorite wine. I chose the chocolate duck and Dom chose Bodacious (named after the famous bull). We pulled out of the driveway and headed for Port Aransas. After an hour of uneventful driving, we stopped in the first town to get some coffee and eat sandwiches. We bought some coffee beans from Starbucks and had them ground course. When we were getting back onto the road, we took a wrong turn. Rather than making a U turn, we took an alternative route. That route led us to a small street where there was a stopped cargo train. After waiting for about 10 minutes we decided to follow the others and turn around to go back to the original route. A few more hours down a road with nothing to see but flat, empty farm land; we got a warning that there was a significant slow down ahead. We thought it was just the traffic jam to cross the bridge onto the island of Port Aransas. As we pulled farther up in the line of traffic we saw a traffic sign that said "Stay in car on ferry". Oh no! The guy at the fire last night was right. One guy had said "Port Aransas? You'll have to take the ferry to get there." While another stated "Nah, they built a bridge." Well, they were both right and Google didn't say a darn thing about the fastest route being on a ferry. We pulled up and drove our Jeep, House, and puppies on everyone's first ferry ride! It only lasted a couple minutes but it was pretty amazing. We got to the campground shortly after that, set up and had dinner with the wine that we had bought.
Sunday was our first day at the beach. We successfully made coffee in the French press, even though we had electricity just to prove that we could. We walked the puppies on the beach, which is Drac's favorite part of any trip to the beach. He loves to run every time his little feet hit the soft sand. After walking about a half mile and looking for shells while the puppies ran and smelled all the things, we turned around before Drac ran out of steam to walk on his own.
We got in the car and decided to drive down the beach to explore. We love beaches in Texas that not only allow dogs but also driving and camping on the sand. To park or camp on this beach, you need to purchase a parking pass, they are available at the gas stations and a few other places.
We stopped to have some seafood for lunch, when in Rome! We drove on the beach back to the RV and then around the island to explore. Later we went for another walk in the sand with the puppies since they had some rest in the car. After all that walking and excitement, it was time to relax with dinner and a DVD.
What an amazing week. We have one more week to spend in Port Aransas and we can’t wait to share with you what will happen next week!