Believe it or not, we have never had a problem with a campground that we have found in the entire year we've been on the road. I credit this to quite a bit of research that goes into booking the campgrounds, and a wealth of information from apps and websites like Campendium, Hipcamp, good ol' Google, and the many blogs of other fulltimers.
But there is always a first for everything, and this week was our first time to arrive at a campground that we had planned to stay at and decide to leave.
We crossed into California imagining an easy two hour drive to our campground near Crescent City, CA. But when we arrived, the internet was not as advertised, we could not find a camp host to provide information on our reservation, and many of the spots were filled with RVs that had obviously not been moved for awhile and were extremely unkept. These were signs that it was time to move on and try somewhere else.
So we just headed down the coast of California on 101 and looked for a new campground for the week. Requirements: open this time of year, available spot for the bulk of the week, decent internet, and minimal sketchy RVs. It took us four hours and we stopped at a total of eight campgrounds, but we found a nice spot under the redwoods in the coastal town of Trinidad, CA. Steven kept his cool the entire time. I'm not ashamed to say that I did have a bit of a grumble midway through our search since I have been booking the campgrounds and was frustrated with this outcome.
But just as the sun set we drove into the Emerald Forest RV resort, parked under some beautiful Redwood trees, and then found a delicious restaurant just down the street. Great end to an unexpected day.
And just in case this happy ending wasn't enough of a reminder that road life offers wonderful surprises, when we pulled over during this sunset to figure out the next campground to try, we got one more treat. I got out of the car to take a picture and could hear hundreds of seals on the rocks below. I couldn't even see them, but the serenade that was echoing off of the rocks was an incredible moment.
This was the spot that we pulled into that night! Trinidad had fantastic restaurants and we spent a day exploring Eureka, the costal fishing towns, and local brewery.
Plans don't work out. And the outcome is sometimes better. Lesson learned.