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by Ron
We Don't Always Go By the Book

The first cupboard behind the driver's seat contains all of our campground reference guides and there are a lot of them. The one we use the most is the Trailer Life Campground Directory.  It's like a big city telephone directory and has many dog eared pages and sticky notes within its pages. We only buy one every other year and keep fairly current that way. But there are other guides and they consist of a Coast to Coast directory, an Elk's Club camping list, a Corp of Engineer's Campground directory, a national park information book, the RVer's Fairgrounds and Parks Camping Guide and a list of the Escapee Parks. In addition there might be a couple of recent state park guides. Since these are free at the information centers we will probably toss them after we leave the state. 

With all of this information you would think that I would wheel this big rig into one of the parks listed in the collection. This isn't always the case because there are many good campgrounds not listed in the popular publications for some reason or another. This was brought to mind when some of you tried to find the park that we are currently staying in--Red Pines Campground near Carson City, Michigan. It's not listed in your directories. This lovely, shaded, inexpensive park has wide, long sites in a beautiful setting. It's quiet and the owners want to keep it that way. It's never full and they really don't seem to care because they are careful about who stays here. Loud parties, noisy motorcycles and carloads of visitors are not welcome here. If you come here it's because you heard about it from someone else or happened to see the small sign well off the main street through town. Thankfully my daughter saw that sign when she was taking a short cut through Carson City. 

This morning Barb made a four week reservation for December in a county park that you will not find in the Trailer Life Directory. It's another beautiful park near West Palm Beach, Florida (actually Lake Worth) and is within two miles of the ocean. The $16 a day rate is reasonable for that popular area even though the hookups only provide electricity and water. This park doesn't need to advertise or be listed because they never lack for campers. It's within a large park complex (tennis courts, walking and bike trails) and the sites are large and shady. It has modern restrooms and showers which means that you don't have to dump too often. 

When moving down the road (we don't usually make reservations) we may also spot an unlisted campground that turns out to be a find. We know that to be listed in Trailer Life you have to meet certain standards. 

So what is the point of all this?  It's simply a message to keep your eyes open and investigate. And once you find one of these gems share it with others.  We do. 

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