St. Augustine, Florida (Shakedown cruise) July 2017

Ka Hale Shakedown Cruise to St. Augustine – July 18 – 21, 2017

St Aug July 2017.jpg

Took the RV up to St Augustine for it’s shakedown cruise.  We stayed at The Bryn Mawr Ocean Resort  (click on link to view campground) on Butler Beach.  We had an ocean front space and really thought it was a nice place convenient to the city.  Below is a slide show of RV lot pics.

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The beach was wide and smooth with white sand.  Cars were given a lane to drive on.  Not much surf to speak of though.

We unhooked on Wednesday and drove the RV across the Bridge of Lions, to downtown St. Augstine (where they had very convent and free RV parking).

There we took a tour of the city on The Old Time Trolley (another link).  For about $25.00 each, this hop on & hop off tour of more than a couple of hours was well worth it.  Sites included were the Old Jail, Our Lady of Leche Shrine, Potter’s Drug Store, Grace Methodist Church, Flagler College, Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse, Colonial Quarter, Oldest House in the USA, Government House, Spice & Tea Exchange, Mission of Nombre de Dios, Old City Gates, Scarlet O’hara’s, Wax Museum, The Fountain of Youth, Whetstone Chocolates and, of course, the banks of the St. Johns River.  Enjoy the slideshow below:

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On one stop we at at Harry’s and walked by the Hilton that had over four feet of water during hurricane Matthew in 2016.  Another stop was the fort Castillo de San Marcos.    We were quite impressed with this fort in the nation’s oldest city.

Our final night we met up with school chum, Steve Downes and ate at Panama Hattie’s.

All in all, a great trip!

Our New Adventure Begins

On July 15, 2017 we took our camping experience to a new level.  Since it has been a couple of years since we had our ultra-lite MPG trailer, we started getting itchy to get back on the road.  We wanted to ratchet up our on-the-road accommodations and after looking at these wonderful Airstream RVs for the past few years, in May we made the big jump and ordered a 2018 Airstream/Mercedes Grand Tour EXT.  White with oyster interior.  Basically an Airstream trailer with an engine.  A great Class B rig nicely appointed and specially built for two.

We named this baby “Ka Hale” which means house in Hawaiian.  Can’t wait to take it on our shake down trip.  Three days next week on the beach in St. Augustine, Florida.  If you are interested in following our “glamping” pursuits, just enter your email to follow our blog.

2003 VW Eurovan Weekender (2012 – present)

Weekender & Queen Mary
Weekender with 14′ Queen Mary on top

We bought a cabin in Yosemite and decided to sell the trailer.  Not wanting to be without a camping vehicle, we purchased a used 2003 VW Eurovan weekender.  It has a popup top, bed, dinette, icebox and awning.  But does not have the stove and sink that our full camper had.  This vehicle has basically become our surfmoblie as it is perfect for putting a couple of boards (and Cooper – R.I.P) inside and head to the beach.  The Eurovan inherited the Beach Hut plates.

2011 MPG Trailer (2011 – 2014)

Californian Resort.JPG

After selling the fully decked out VW camper and moving to Pismo Beach, CA, we decided to buy a travel trailer and explore West Coast surfing spots and National Monuments and Parks in the American West.  After looking for a while and being inspired at the Pismo Beach Vintage Trailer Show, we settled on the Heartland MPG 185 ultra-lite which we appropriately named “Beach Hut”.

We loved the retro look of the MPG.  It had smooth curves and great style.  The outside decals, fenders and wheels help accent its style.  The body was only 6′ 6″ wide, yet with a slide-out, it easily accommodated four adults for entertaining and slept two very comfortably.  The MPG is also extra tall on the inside and even a 6′ 3″ man does not bump his head.  The inside included a well equipped kitchen (2 burner stove, sink, microwave, refrigerator); a sofa on the slide-out that converts to a small bed; a bathroom with potty, sink and shower;  the sitting area has room for four +, converts to a dining room and at night is a roomy queen size bed.  The trailer had all utilities, a/c, heater, a AM/FM radio, CD/DVD player and a six gallon water heater.  We added a 22″ flat screen TV.

Had a blast touring California with our Beach Hut.


Above is from California Gold Country. Below are three photos from Lake Nacimiento.


We also had the Beach hut at Morro Bay & Moss Landing:

1999 VW Westfalia Camper (2005 – 2008)

Once settled in Santa Barbara, California, we decided to get another VW camper.  We found a 1999 Westfalia European fully outfitted included a pop top.  We had fun exploring some of California including Big Bear, Pismo Beach, Ventura and Bodega Bay (where the movie “The Birds” was filmed and just using the van as our local surfmoblie. Having a six cylinder engine gave it lots of power.  Much better highway driving than the slow “Te Koop” in Europe.


24 ft Dodge Class C ( 1983 – 1984)

Upon returning to the USA in 1983, we settled in Melbourne Florida.  On a visit to Janice’s parents in Pacific Grove, California, they offered us the chance to buy the RV they had bought from Janice’s aunt & uncle.  It was in great shape.  We drove it from California to Florida visiting friends in Texas on the way.  Most of the trip was on Route 66.  What an adventure it was.  After a couple of years touring Florida spots in the camper, we sold it to a fellow who was going to drive it to Alaska to live in it.

1979 VW Camper (1981 – 1983)

We began our camping experiences while living in The Hague, Holland.  We bought a 1979 bright green VW camper.  Every weekend and most holidays and vacations we toured around Europe.  On many of your trips, Amiga, our afghan hound went with use.  We had a blast for two years going all through Europe including:  Holland, Belgium, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Austria, Yugoslavia, Switzerland, Denmark and Germany.  We named this camped “Te Koop” which is for sale in Dutch.  Barry’s dad saw the for sale sign and its name was decided.