The Longdogs

The Longdogs
Willy, Harley (back center), and Gretchen

Shifting Spring Break to Corpus Christi

The original plan was to head out to Padre Island National Seashore while we were on the islands but we really wanted some nicer weather. We were scheduled to move back to the mainland to Shields RV Park on Corpus Christi Naval Air Station (CCNAS) on Wednesday. It looked like rain might be moving back in during the afternoon so we decided to get ready and head out late morning for the very short trip back across the causeway. CCNAS is close to the causeway on the mainland side. The trip through the gate can be rather intimidating with the huge concrete barriers set up in a snaking shape leading to the gate. Then the gate itself is a little scary because, while it is definitely tall enough for even tall RVs, it slopes in towards the top with a little trim piece sticking out into the lane. As evidenced by the battered look of the trim pieces, not everyone has good judgment as they come in.  The usually younger guards are very nice but definitely not RVers because, if you ask them whether you are clear, they immediately look down at the little plastic cone sticking out into the lane and tell you that you are fine while you are worried about the trim jutting into the space over your truck.

Anyway, this was not my first trip through so I knew I could make it without a problem if I was careful. The first time I came through, the young man looked at me and said "ma'am, that was some amazing driving" which actually did more to make me nervous when I had to head out through the concrete barriers on my way out. This is a popular military RV park so I know lots of RVers have come through here, most without incident.

After reminding Steve several times to have his rabies certificate for Angus, I had carefully packed up the certificates for The Traveling Longdogs and put them in my computer briefcase. Unfortunately, I brought my new Microsoft Surface tablet instead of my computer and left the briefcase at home. I sure had egg on my face. Fortunately, I was able to call my vet and they faxed the certificates to the RV park office. The website for Mustang Island actually said you need them too but, fortunately for me, they never asked. I am making copies and just leaving them in the RV from now on since the shots are good for three years.

We got a great spot with our large back window facing out onto a field and the bay beyond and got all set up before the rain hit. And it did hit again so we headed into town to the Barnes and Noble so Helen could work and we could relax with a coffee and some magazines. On our way home, we stopped at the Saltwater Grill for dinner. Steve and Helen love seafood and Helen always checks Yelp for restaurant ratings to be prepared.  Steve, Helen, and even Cameron had fish.

Morgan and I opted for other Texas favorites.  Steve and Helen treated...the food was good but I think Helen was just a little disappointed when she belatedly realized that Saltwater Grill is a chain.

Thursday was bright and sunshiny, the perfect day to head back out to Padre Island National Seashore.  There was a bit of a wait to get in as they process new passes at the gate as well as letting passholders and day visitors in but it wasn't too bad.

This is where I got my National Park Senior Pass three years ago.

Our first stop was the Visitor's Center. We knew the kids would want to get their Junior Rangers badges as this was their very first visit to Padre Island National Seashore. If you have kids or grandkids, do not miss out on the Junior Ranger program at National Parks. The kids learn a lot and love getting their badges.

We checked out the electronic presentations, exhibits, and touch and feel table inside before heading outside to look at info available there.

Then we headed to the beach. I didn't take a photo right at the beachfront directly in front of the Visitor's Center but there were people in the water and sunbathing. We were here to look for shells and to pick up trash as part of the Junior Ranger badge requirement.

Checking carefully to see if this was a piece of plastic or tar bit.

The beach was really pretty clean and, I'm happy to say, we saw no cigarette butts or litter that looked like it came directly from people on the beach. Most of it was small pieces that the waves brought in.

The kids were surprised to see all the vegetation growing on the sand dunes. There are more bare sand dunes in the part of Florida they are familiar with seeing. So we explained that the vegetation holds the sand dunes in place and keeps things from eroding from the waves and wind.

We walked a fairly long stretch of beach and they picked up a lot of small pieces. Their big find was a piece of huge rope that looked like a line from a large boat or ship.
The rangers were impressed with the kids work so they not only got their Junior Ranger badge, they also gave them each an "Adopt a Beach" patch.
We checked out the boondocking camping area which had a few places open and the area where people one out there before heading back to the RV.  I sent Steve and Helen off to Doc's Seafood Restaurant out on the causeway for an evening out with local seafood on the menu. They said it was great and the kids were very happy with their homemade tacos...a win, win situation.

1 comment:

  1. The Junior Ranger program is great, for young and old learn a lot. Glad there wasn't much litter on the beach. You are all obviously having a great time.


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