Salt Springs

At the boat launch in the tent camping area

At the boat launch in the tent camping area

It’s summer here at Salt Springs — complete with sticky humidity and biting bugs.  We’ve already gone through a half bottle of Deep Woods Off.  But we are loving it here!

In the tent camping area

In the tent camping area

Although the campground is a Forest Service campground, it’s run by concessionaires.  So it’s actually a big RV park, complete with full hookups.  But we’re paying $16 a night with our senior pass.

During the winter, you can stay up to 180 days here.  There is an unbelievable assortment of big rigs, small rigs, popups, home built campers, a teardrop, and even several tents in the RV area because they want hookups.  The sites are all different sizes — from spacious to cramped.  It looks like they built the pads around the trees, so tree placement apparently determines the size of the individual sites.  We happened to get a really big one.

Down by the canal

Down by the canal

In addition to the main campground, there is a primitive RV area with no hookups, and a primitive tent camping area. The RV park gets pretty full on the weekends, but there are a lot of open sites during the week.

It rained yesterday, and threatened to rain all of this morning.  But it cleared up early this afternoon and is beautiful now.

Ron took Sheba with him when he did laundry this morning.  So Sunny and I had a leisurely walk through the tent camping area to the canal.  The management keeps that area beautifully manicured, so it’s a

Turtle in the canal

Turtle in the canal

pleasure to linger there.  We gave the water a wide berth, though, because there are alligators there, and I’d bet some of them are probably big.  Big enough to be a danger to a small dog, anyway.

We haven’t made it to the springs yet this trip.  Dogs aren’t allowed down there so it takes some planning for us.  🙂

Alligator warning sign

Alligator warning sign

Verizon data service is spotty and sporadic here.  Sometimes I can get a good enough signal to surf a bit.  Other times I can barely send text email.  And other times, all I get is “server not found.”  But there isn’t a good enough signal for a phone call.  You might connect if you are lucky, but you will certainly drop the call.

At first, we were disappointed when we arrived, with comparisons of Ocean Pond fresh in our minds.  However, Salt Springs is wonderful in a different way.  There are a

Our Casita at Salt Springs

Our Casita at Salt Springs

lot of snowbirds who spend the winter here.  The club house has lots of activities — we got asked if we were on our way to Bingo twice.

And best of all, one of the Palatka churches is doing a Christmas cantata here Saturday night.  We’re to bring finger foods and they’ll supply the beverages.

I am REALLY looking forward to the cantata!

Campers built from cargo trailers

Campers built from cargo trailers

Long term popup camper

Long term popup camper

Van in the primitive RV camping area

Van in the primitive RV camping area

Primitive tent camping area

Primitive tent camping area

Salt Springs RV camping area

Salt Springs RV camping area

The canal area

The canal area

Teardrop camper

Teardrop camper

A woman is solo camping in this little trailer

A woman is solo camping in this little trailer

This little Scamp stayed just one night

This little Scamp stayed just one night

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

14 Comments

  1. Fabulous lead photo! (But they are all good). Love the selection of RVs.

    Bingo? I’m there! I never thought I’d say this but …. I can’t wait till I’m old enough for the Senior Pass.

    Enjoy your new home,

    Kim

    • There were a couple of Roadtreks on our lane this weekend. I thought of you!

      That senior pass makes the difference in our being able to camp for more than a few days a month and being able to camp whenever we want to. If you gotta get old anyway, it sure does make it more fun! 😀

  2. I thought about those cargo trailers but they aren’t much cheaper than a small trailer.
    Love your new camp ground.

    • Gail was originally going to convert a cargo trailer before she decided to do the van instead. She said she’s much happier with the van than she would have been with the trailer.

  3. Fabulous photos of the birds (and turtle)! They look great enlarged! You have wonderful photography and writing skills! The alligator thing still kind of freaks me out, though! Sure hope they stay in the water!

    I always enjoy your posts! They are so informative and interesting. I feel as though I’m traveling vicariously with you! And you’re honest, too, about the problems – both with camping vehicles and with other campers. Sometimes it seems like so much work, but then you have the beauty of nature around you! And you seem to have figured out the ‘angles’ for finding the right spots away from the ‘crowd’ and the noisy generators.
    But I’m enjoying seeing all these different campgrounds that I never would have known about!

    We’re heading into colder weather up here in PA, although it hasn’t been too bad yet, and even ‘balmy’ (in the 60s) some days. I’m OK with some of the cold weather – it’s the snow I can do without! The good news is it will start getting lighter pretty soon, even though it won’t be noticeable right away!

    • Kathy, the photos were zooms and the quality suffered, but I was thrilled to capture them. And alligators freak me out more than they did when I was growing up in Florida. Ever since the young alligator made a beeline for Sheba when we were in Cotton Hill, I have a lot more respect for them!

      I am just thrilled when I hear that someone really enjoys my posts. I do so love to share my days, and knowing they are appreciated is all the encouragement I need to keep on doing it.

      We usually don’t make reservations unless we are going to a very busy place. I’ll check online and make sure there are some open spots before I get there. Then I just smile and ask if they have “a pretty place on the water that’s nice and private” or “an area where there aren’t a lot of generators” or “a place where we have the best chance of getting a signal”… whatever is important to me at the time. Most of the time they will go out of their way to choose a nice spot for me. It’s all about being appreciative of their efforts, I think.

      You shocked me when you mentioned that it will start getting lighter soon. That was a jolt! The year has sped by so fast… we haven’t even had winter yet and soon another year will be here! Glad you have had balmy days in the 60’s.

      I love the first snow in the woods when everything is covered with a white blanket that creates a silent, pristine world. But the slush and old piled up snow are beyond depressing.

      So I wish you warm, cozy evenings and happy dreams of spring! 🙂

  4. What beautiful creatures you have captured! Wonderful shots!!
    So I had to Google and grab the link for that area for “My Places” map selections I am saving for the future. 180 days….that’s amazing. I thought most places shoved you off in 14 days.
    I’m patiently awaiting Dec 21 – the day of the Winter Solstice!
    Keep up the gator watch :O)!!!

    • cozygirl, you can stay at any of the Ocala National Forest campgrounds for 180 days during the winter off season. Salt Springs is the only one with hookups. During the summer months the stay is a lot shorter. Can’t remember how long. I think 2 or 3 weeks.

      Glad you enjoyed the pictures! And we will definitely keep up the gator watch! Gators are supposed to hibernate in winter, but it is so warm they don’t know it’s winter!

  5. The pictures are wonderful….loved the egret and all of the canal picts! You know how much we would love to be there with you two! Through your pictures I do feel like I’m there.

    Hope you are having some great times. The wonderful part is that it will be there…does not look any different than when we were there three years ago.

    There is a Casita Owners Facebook thread on Wilson repeaters. I am going to check it out, it may solve the internet connection problem. Will let you know.

    • The only change I notice since we were here with the Aliner is that they are a lot more strict about bear protocol. Cooler must be locked inside the cab of the truck at night and you can’t leave a trash sack outside. (We usually hang one from our little fold-up table.)

      I am so glad the photos transmit the feel of the place to you.

      I had a cell antenna that I used at the house when I had the old Verizon air card with an antenna port. It DID help the signal, but then Verizon retaliated by cutting our speed to a crawl. I forget the term that it’s called.

      However, if you were somewhere where you were moving frequently, I don’t think it would be a problem. I didn’t bring the antenna with me this time because my Mifi doesn’t have an antenna port.

  6. P.S. Do you ever camp by Apalachicola….we did a day drive to that sweet town when we were at a condo on 30A by Seaside, FL. See there there is a natl forest there too…just wondering if you have links to that area.

    • cozygirl, I haven’t ever camped there, but it’s on my list. There is a mini Casita rally at Ft. Pickens on the Gulf Island Seashore that I was hoping to attend. But it’s not working out this year.

      Google Ft. Pickens. It’s a COE park and looks like a gorgeous island to spend a couple of weeks on.

  7. Looks Beautiful. Where is Salt Springs?? Im in California but “have trailer will travel”.
    Thank
    LilNomad

    • Hi LilNomad! Salt Springs is in the lower northeast quadrant of Florida in the Ocala National Forest.

      I envy the gorgeous places you have in California — although camping is a lot cheaper here! 🙂

%d bloggers like this: