We were able to make an early start, knowing that we wanted to stop in Alabama and Mississippi on the way to Louisiana.
We had made an online friend from the camper forum we check often: Billy. He’d given us lots of great information on places to see and visit while on the road in the south east. We contacted him on Friday night and he offered to come out and meet us while we traveled through Alabama. He came out to the Battleship Memorial Park just outside of Mobile with his kids. It was great to put a face to the name and the Park was really neat. It’s always good to learn whilst on the road.
The USS Alabama is a huge war ship that was used towards the end of World War 2, unfortunately we didn’t have time to take the tour around it. Also in the park is the submarine, USS Drum. Billy was telling us that prior to Hurricane Katrina, the submarine was actually in water but was forced onto land where it now permanently resides. The Alambama had to be towed back to its current location as it drifted out of its docking area during the hurricane. There were some fully refurbed bombers, aircraft, tanks, missiles and many other military items. The Park has a number of retired military volunteers working on the various crafts, it was a good place to stop.
Click HERE for photos of our visit to Battleship Memorial Park.
As we were leaving, Dave got a great picture of an aircraft on the roof on the camper – a new addition to our road trip??
We continued along the I10, a freeway which runs all the way across the southern part of the country, from east (Florida) to west (California). In Mississippi we headed down to the coast to make a brief stop in Gulf Islands National Seashore – we do love our National Parks! This National Park is actually in both Florida and Mississippi. The islands are constantly moving and changing as the winds and tides move sand from one end to the other and from each side. We watched an interesting show explaining this. Had we had more time, there was a boat tour option here, but time pressed on and we wanted to reach the campground while it was still light.
Driving into Louisiana and then coming into the New Orleans area was eye-opening. There is still so much evidence of the devastation left behind in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. It’s quite bizarre that in all the neighborhoods, there are houses which have been fully rebuilt and restored, mixed in with houses that have just been left as is, abandoned completely. We couldn’t imagine living in a lovely new house next door to one gutted by water and falling apart.
Thanks to advice given to us by quite a few people, we’d canceled our reservation at one of the closer campgrounds to the city and reserved a spot at Bayou Segnette State Park in Westwego, thereby saving about $200 for the week and enjoying a far prettier setting! This state park is quite the deal, only $18/night with water & electric, free wi-fi and huge shocker: free washers & dryers! It’s much harder for us to use our washer without sewer hook-up, so free laundry facilities were a huge bonus for the week (this trip is about the only time I will have excitement about laundry!).
A little later in the evening, once we’d set-up, the Godwin’s, another FOTR (family on the road), arrived for the week. Jake was especially excited about this as they have a 10 year old son as well – lots of opportunities to play loomed ahead.
States visited: 49!
visited 49 states (98%)
Create your own visited map of The United States
Miles driven so far -
LOOP 1 (Aug 2009 - Aug 2010): 29,000
LOOP 2 (May - August 2012): 10,800
Highest altitude with camper: 11,158ft (I-70, CO)