RV Adventures with Bug Smacker


We have stopped at the Beckley Travel Plaza along the West Virginia Turnpike before. In fact, we have been here several times in the past to refuel, use the restrooms and get food. However, we never knew what the Tamarack up the hill from the rest stop actually was.

We needed a place to stop for the night and noticed that there were other RVs parked up the hill from the actual rest stop. We headed up to check it out.

There were several other rigs parked for the night at the edge of the parking lot in a section designated for RVs. We chose a spot, dropped the landing gear, let out a slide and headed out to see what the Tamarack building was all about.

Tamarack Tamarack Tamarack

The Tamarack is actually a neat place to visit. It is a large welcome center with items for sale that represent West Virginia. There were arts & crafts, sculptures, paintings, books, and homemade jellies & jams. There was even a small restaurant that offered meals like you would get a home.

Tamarack Tamarack Tamarack

This stop-over offered everything we needed. The Tamarack had a restaurant, clean restrooms and a quite place to park the rig. The rest stop section had a Burger King, Sbarro, Starbucks, Quiznos, restrooms and an Exxon station with gas and diesel fuel.

Travelmart Travelmart Travelmart

We will be looking forward to stopping here again.

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Ocean Lakes Family Campground

Ocean Lakes Family CampgroundJust another day in paradise as I sit down to write this post. I can’t believe that we have been here almost 2 weeks now. They say “time flies when you are having fun”. In this case, that is truly an understatement.

The first couple of days here at Ocean Lakes the weather was a bit rocky. There was a storm passing through and with the rain came the wind. Following the storm, the days just kept getting better. In fact, it got to be quite summer like around here.

Some of our friends that joined us this year at the beach were: Tom & Cathy, Jim & Cathy, Jerry & Lori, Jim & Gail and Ashley & Dillon.

Last year the water park wasn’t open yet. It was still under construction. This year it was open on the weekends. The only thing closed was the water slide. We all enjoyed kickin’ back and floating along the Lazy River. It was a blast.

We even made time for a game of Putt Putt Golf.

Putt Putt Golf

The highlight of the trip as always in the ocean. This year at the ocean we saw: A passing ship, a dolphin, several jellyfish, crabs, oodles of kids and dogs and more sea shells than even my dad could count.  kids, Dogs, Dead Body (Fire Trucks, Police Cars, Coast Guard, Jet Skis, Planes, Helicopters.)

Sadly, there was also the report of a body that had washed up on the beach while we were here. With that brought several: Fire Trucks, Police Cars, Coast Guard, Jet Skis, Planes, Helicopters, and boats.

We hit all the usual food places we love down here. A new one this year was Lee’s Inlet Kitchen. This place has some really good seafood for a very reasonable price. We also went over to Wahlburgers for the first time. I half-expected this place to be more of a gimmick but Wahlburgers had one of the best hamburgers I have ever eaten.

One evening we got together and threw some steaks and chicken on the grill. Tom and Cathy provided some T-Bone steaks that were so huge I swear they had to lead them to the grill by a rope and halter.

No Thump-Thump-Thump this year. We chose to camp a few rows down from the beach bar this year. This proved to be a wise choice. We could now leave our windows open all night to listen to the calming sound of the ocean waves instead of the Thump-Thump-Thump of karaoke from the nearby beach bar.

One night Tom, Cathy, Terri and I caught a show at the Carolina Opry. The show was called “Time Warp- The best of the 60s, 70s, and 80s”. The show was pretty good and brought back some welcome memories.

Ocean Lakes Family Campground

Ocean Lakes Family Campground

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Walmart – Circleville OH

walmartI just awoke from a terrible dream. I was stranded in a place with nothing but wet weather and long cold nights. My RV was buried beneath a huge pile of “SNOW”. I was unable to get out and go anywhere. When I was released from my prison and I was finally able to get out of that place, I woke to find myself camping in the middle of a Wal-mart parking lot. Oh, the horror of it all.

As Wal-marts go this one was actually pretty nice. There were plenty of places to eat within walking distance. There were other RVs, a few Semi-trucks, and even a police car up in the corner. It was well lit. We felt very safe.

This was only a stop-over on our way to Myrtle Beach. I had checked the weather in Michigan before we left as well as the weather in Myrtle Beach. It was to be clear and good for traveling. However, I neglected to check it in-between these places.  Sometime in the middle of the night, it started to rain here in Ohio.

We woke around 4:30 AM. It was a good time to hit the road. There was a Tim Horton’s across the street that was open. We made a quick pitstop to grab some desperately needed Cups of Joe.

Except for the rain, we enjoy traveling this time of day. As we traveled, the rain cleared just in time for us to enjoy the scenic view as we passed through the mountains.



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The RV Show USA

the-rv-showI’d like to give a shout-out to all of our RV friends. I have been invited to chat about HitchUpandGo on The RV Show USA radio program. The program will broadcast Sunday 1/22/17nat 1 PM (ET). If would like to check it out, here is the link: http://thervshowusa.com/rv-show-podcast/


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Keep it Clean

Residing in the state of Michigan exposes us to a lot of news about drinking water problems lately. In fact, people outside of the state of Michigan, in the past would associate this location with popular places like Detroit, Grand Rapids or possibly even Traverse City. Now everyone just says “ are you by Flint?”

Flint has gotten a lot of exposure due to the water problems the city has been having. Not to take anything away from Flint’s issues but there are quite a few other places in this country that have water problems as well.

When you are setting up camping in a new location you never know what the water quality in the area is like. That is why we always use a quality made Water Filter. The filter improves the taste and clarity of water coming into your rig. It will also help protect your RV plumbing from the buildup of contaminants. We not only install it when we have water at our site, we use it to filter the water when we fill our fresh water tanks. I try to install the water filter as close to the water source as I can. That way I can keep as much of my water system clean as possible.

In the past, we have used the small RV type inline filters. These worked OK. We did, however, find that if the water was bad enough, these filters wouldn’t last the entire length of our stay.

Lately, we have been using the larger Universal Whole House type filter. They last longer between changes and you can replace the filters inside with different types if you like. You just need to purchase a couple of hose adapters to attach your water hose.

Water Filter

Water Filter

Water Filter

Water Filter


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