Disney Trip

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We had an enjoyable 4 days and 3 nights in Disney World’s Fort Wilderness Campground.  This is a special place to camp…first class sites in the woods….hard to believe the campground will be 40 years old this year.  Here’s a great summary of the campground’s features.

Met friends from college for breakfast Sunday morning.  And what would breakfast be in Disney if it wasn’t a “character” breakfast complete with all our friends.  This one was at Disney’s Polynesian Resort, also a 1971 creation and one of the first two resort hotels in the park.

Here’s a few more pics to give you a flavor of Fort Wilderness.  The last two are of a 5th Wheel in our loop…quite the light show.



Next Stop – Disney’s Fort Wilderness

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When the kids were young there were several families that bought Seasonal Passes and regularly headed over to Disney’s campground, Fort Wilderness.  The kids loved the campground almost as much as the parks.  Many fond memories of riding bikes down to the lake and watching Disney’s nightly fireworks show….or watching the nightly screening of a classic Disney at the Meadow Recreation Area’s outdoor theater, also home to the nightly Chip ‘n’ Dale “Sing-a-Long” and marshmallow roast.

After the kids were older we’d let them take Disney Transportation to the parks and the adults would stroll through Epcot enjoying a meal at one of the restaurants.

Now that the kids are gone we’re heading back for a three night weekend the 28-30 of January.  Its DW’s birthday party.  Friends join us Friday night for cards at the campground.  We’ll ride bikes down for the fireworks, stroll around Downtown Disney and on Saturday night take in La Nouba at Cirque du Soleil and a birthday dinner at one of the restaurants in Downtown Disney.

Shop online for campsites…although they’re busy in the season you can find cancellations, as we did.  Also shop prices as we found a price almost half the stated rate.  There are cabins in Fort Wilderness so even your non-camping friends can stay in the campground…and for those who demand a hotel there’s the Wilderness Lodge….not our idea of camping but a wonderful place to visit for the beauty of the structure.

We thought of Disney as a place to take the kids….now we’re looking forward to going and “acting like kids”.

Hillsborough River State Park

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Our inaugural voyage was November 11-14, 2010 to Hillsborough River State Park (click to read more).  We stayed in spot 105 and would recommend this Park for campers from tent to RV.  Great bike riding, lots of other parks nearby to expore, and just 15 minutes to Camping World on I-4 Exit 10 at US 579.

Also had the rig weighed at the Florida Weigh Station at I-4 Exit 14.  Here are the rig weights:  Weights

Pictures of this trip are here:


The Beginning

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In 2010 we decided it was time to sell the Coleman popup.  We’d had her since 1997 and enjoyed many trips with the kids.  Although all systems continued to work we simply decided we wanted more room, more comfort and the ability to pack and go more easily.

After months of looking we decided a 5th wheel was right for us.  A tow vehicle would be needed and we were fortunate to find a 2008 Ford F250 King Ranch Crewcab Diesel 4×2 with 28,000 miles on Auto Trader that had been purchased two years earlier by a German couple for use in traveling the US on their vacations here.   We love the truck, especially the King Ranch interior, but knowing what I know now I’d probably have preferred the extra towing capacity of a F350.

With the truck purchased we turned to 5th wheel rigs.  We looked at both new and used and really preferred to buy used in case we decided to trade after we’d discovered more of our likes and dislikes.  Early on, tho, we looked at the Heartland Sundance and Karen really fell in love with the kitchen layout.  The kitchen really does influence the balance of the interior layout.  The Sundance was 32 feet long and right at the weight limit of the F250.  But we really couldn’t find a used Sundance anywhere locally.

By sheer luck I was looking at the Heartland Owner’s website and discovered a 2009 Heartland Sundance being sold by a couple in Virginia.  They were buying a bigger rig and were willing to deliver it to us in Florida.  Since we both work this made the deal possible.  They are a lovely couple and we look forward to meeting up with them camping sometime.

So the Sundance had a new home.  With a few modifications we are able to store the rig in our side yard.  We have electric and water hookups so we can “camp” at home on the weekends.  This has really helped us understand the various systems on the camper and have the fun of making those interior improvements to suit our needs.

Here’s what our rig looks like:

Lots more pictures of the Sundance can be found here: