Monday, November 10th – time to move again! If it seems like we are moving a lot, we are. Before we left, we told our friends and family that we wouldn’t be hopping around as much this year but thus far it hasn’t worked out that way. Pretty hard keeping up with the blog posts when you are traveling every few days. But not to worry we’ll be slowing down in the near future. We’re just anxious to get as far south as possible to avoid any icy or snowy weather.
Since we had reservations for a two week stay further south in Hobe Sound (East coast of FL near Jupiter) beginning on the 12th, we only had two days to kill. The St. Augustine area would be the approximate halfway point so stopping there would make the 7 hour drive from Fort McAllister to Hobe Sound more manageable and less tedious. We wanted to try a different campground in the St. Augustine area this time, but due to no suitable availability we ended up booking two nights at Stage Coach RV Resort where we stayed last year.
We’ve been to St.Augustine several times in the past and although we love it, on this trip, we didn’t have any big desire to do any repetitive sightseeing there.
As we left Fort McAllister, we asked ourselves the usual question – would we stay here again? The answer is a definite “maybe”. That doesn’t sound very definite, does it? Now that we’ve seen it, our first choice in this area would be Skidaway Island State Park, a much nicer, more big rig friendly campground with full hookups and closer proximity to Savannah. It’s not that we didn’t like Fort McAllister, we did overall, but Skidaway has the edge in our opinion. We would return to Fort McAllister but would stay during slower times and not arrive on a weekend (weekends start Friday afternoon) to increase our chances of snagging a suitable site.
Because of the relatively short drive (approximately 164 miles), we took our time getting ready to go in the morning. We decided not to hitch up the car at our site in case some backing was needed to avoid the trees. Rob drove down the road a bit (I followed in the van) then pulled over in a wide straight area to hitch up.
After waiting for the very slow gate to open (luckily it opened without keying in a code), by 11:00 a.m. we were cruising along Savage Island Road, headed for GA-144W and then I-95S. It was a pretty easy stretch of driving for Rob and yes, a pretty boring stretch for moi – the billboards on the side of the highway make for such fascinating reading! Contrary to the guidance of both our GPS units, to avoid the congestion on I-95 thru downtown Jacksonville, instead we took exit 262B to the I-295 western beltway, eventually picking up I-95S again south of Jacksonville. Easy driving with minimal traffic on mostly decent roadways for this section of the beltway.
Once on I-95 again it was only about 20 miles before we took exit 318 to SR-16W towards St. Augustine/Green Cove Springs. When exiting here you must immediately cross to the left lane and make a left turn onto County Road 208. Stage Coach RV Park is located on the left just a short distance down the road.
As mentioned above, prior to making our reservation at Stage Coach, we had researched a number of other campgrounds. Anastasia State Park sounded nice but is not really big rig friendly (more on this in a future post). There was another fairly new but small campground (only 30 sites), Pellicer Creek Campground which sounded interesting but when I called they didn’t have a site big enough for us. Luckily, we were able to snag the last pull-thru site at Stage Coach for the two nights we wanted.
Stage Coach is okay for a short stay and is very close to I-95. It is also reasonably close to the historic section of St. Augustine. No pool, clubhouse or other amenities here but each site does have full hookups, a cement pad and a picnic table. Most sites are gravel and appear level – in our case we didn’t even need to use the jacks. There is very wide spacing between sites here, unusual for a private campground but still does not offer much in the way of privacy. Most sites have a tree which is good for shade but might be bad for satellite reception. Despite the tree overhanging our coach, we had no issue getting all three DISH birds in the western arc. OTA TV and Verizon reception was also very good. The rate here is a little pricey for a place without much in the way of amenities – $45 for a 50 Amp site ($42 for 30 Amp). They accept Good Sam, FMCA, AAA and Active Military on the daily rate only.
We arrived at the campground around 2:15 p.m. and after checking in, made our way to site #41. No sooner had we gotten situated on the site when it started to rain lightly (I think this happened to us when we arrived last year – I thought this was the Sunshine State). An hour or so later we were treated to a beautiful full rainbow followed by a beautiful sunset.
We didn’t do anything that evening but we had plans for the next day. We’ll tell you about that in our next post.