December 13, 2018 – Gulf Shores, Alabama

Continued our adventure down I-10 – it was surprising as we headed east how much destruction Hurricane Michael created along the interstate – lots of trees down and working crews continuing to clean up the area (did not get down to Panama City which I understand got the worst).

Arrived at Gulf Shores State Park (we had driven thru it 3 years ago when we camped in the area). Medium size park with paved roads and level sites and FHU – quite impressive and we are parked right next to Lake Middle.

The park even publishes a weekly activity agenda including Pickleball (on a tennis court), fitness classes and seminars.

Predicting heavy rains and winds tonight and we are right next to the lake – set the alerts.

Friday we survived the rains (4 + inches) and winds – still raining this morning but supposed to slow up.

Went to hear the “Turtle Seminar” at the nature center – learned some things about the local turtles. Didn’t know that a turtle can feel your touch on the outside of its shell.

Brenda went out pine needle collecting later – found a sweet spot with lots of long, long needles.

We went errand shopping later and visited the Big Beach Brewery – nice with good IPA.  Appropriate Christmas (4)

Saturday is still overcast and mid 50’s – nothing to brag about but it is dry. I did do some maintenance projects.

I did get to ride the trails in the area – lots of them and they have good signage or else I would have been lost – did ride 10 miles. It is so enjoyable just being outside and riding the bike and seeing the scenery.

Brenda did her pine needle searching.

We did go out for dinner at the Acme Oyster Company – original location in New Orleans – we did sit at the schucker’s bar and had a great dinner and drinks.

Sunday we did find a church close to go to – we had gone to this church 3 years ago. It’s amazing in our travels now repeating places and things we had done before to do them again.

We are smoking a pork butt today and actually started it at 6 AM – looking good.

Brenda did more pine needle collection – hope you got a place for a basket.

Monday Brenda out collecting pine needles – I cleaning the grill.

Did take the bike out and did 11 miles. If you enjoying riding the bike this is the campground for you. Miles of trails and easy and scenic. I did stop at three Offbeat Attractions.

Gulf State Park Pier – not offbeat but it is a beautiful setting.

Then the Souvenir Store in which you can walk through a shark to get into the building.

And finally the World’s largest Purple Octopus.

Tuesday is nice again with sunshine and a little bit warmer. Brenda doing her needle hunting.

I did visit the pier again as there was a ranger there doing a talk on the history and wildlife of the pier.

We did a nice seafood dinner in the evening.

Wednesday smoked 3 blocks of cheese this morning – my first official try – we are wrapping the pieces and letting them mellow out.

Rode the bike 13 miles today and just love these bike trails.  Saw some wildlife.

Gulf Shores is the best place to relax and wonder – one of our favorite places.

Thursday rain over night and we take off for Hammond, Louisiana.

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