Sprinting East to the Virginia Coast

So far our run from the UP to Florida has been an almost straight flight south as we passed through Wisconsin and Illinois.  Now, however, we would begin the mile stacking zig-zag as we turned towards various family members locations.  First up, a 900 mile track mostly east to Virginia Beach.  And of course, since we don’t like doing more than four hours a day driving the big rig, we broke that up into four individual legs of less than 250 miles each.  Having spent a lot of money in Chicago, we elected to parking lot camp for free in three consecutive Cracker Barrels!

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One of our Cracker Barrels.  A block or two off the main road, no strip malls, limited traffic, a residential neighborhood behind us.

Ever since getting back into the US and staying at a Cracker Barrel in Ohio, we have become solid fans of their Southern Fried Chicken combo as well as their RV parking arrangements.  These are usually quieter, a bit more isolated, and probably safer than some of the alternatives such as Walmart and Home Depot.  Oh, and did I mention that they offer a Southern Fried Chicken combo?  For $10 you get four pieces plus two sides plus biscuits or cornbread, which is a ridiculous amount of food, and we now know to split one meal; it will be plenty.  2-cracker-barrel-fried-chicken-dinner

So a big thanks to CB, particularly their Maumee OH, Cranberry PA, and Frederick MD locations.  For our stay in Virginia Beach to see Linda, Jayson, June-June, Kaytarra, and Nasir we selected Cape Henry RV Park on Fort Story.  This is the fourth military campground we have tried in the Tidewater area, and is our new top choice. 3-run-to-va-map

The little known Stewart Campground was efficient and convenient for our first trip through the region in 2016, but it is a bit bare bones and further away from the people we are visiting.  Sea Mist, which we basically used as an overpriced RV parking lot in 2018, is popular, fully serviced, but I think it is overrated since the beach access is limited.  We thought we had found the perfect option at Little Creek JEB Campground when we came through the area this last May: a short drive to family, full hook up sites for $27 a night, and a nice setting in the woods.  4-lighthouse

But in preparation for this trip I stumbled across Cape Henry, which I don’t believe was listed on All Stays until recently, possibly because it is run by the same office that manages Little Creek’s campground.  Even the central reservation site for all navy campgrounds was unfamiliar with the name “Cape Henry” and referred to it as the Navy Getaways Campground on Fort Story.  Regardless, it is our new got to spot for Tidewater. Located even more convenient for us than Little Creek, it is power and water only for $25 a night, but the sites are larger and more secluded than Little Creek’s offerings.  5-rose-dolphin

We were able to spend part of three days with Linda as she transitioned to a privately run group home in Virginia Beach.  We enjoyed a fantastic evening with June-June, Kaytarra, and Nasir at our campground, celebrating with campfire, smores, and story after story until well after midnight. 6-fire-1

There is just something special about a cool evening with friends and family around a campfire.  Nasir is fascinated with our camera; I guess the idea of a single use electronic device is unique to someone who has only ever used smart phones and tablets for taking pictures.  This is my way of saying Rose and I are not to blame (or rather, we cant take credit) for any of these campfire pictures.

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Cutting off part of his own face in this selfie was not an accident, it was surely an artistic choice.

We had enough spare time such that Rose was able to do some crafting in anticipation of our next big festival vending opportunity in Florida later this month, and I was able to do some geocaching.  We also visited yet another Moose, where we enjoyed a warm welcome from the locals at Lodge 1198, Virginia Beach.

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PKM helping Rose with some crafting.

After our three consecutive nights at Cracker Barrels in route here we reigned in the restaurant activity quite a bit, settling for one evening of Chinese take out, though we did stumble across Wasserhund, a local craft brewery, for a solid and interesting couple of beers.  9-beer

Next up: continuing south to Wilmington, NC. 10-fire-3