We’ve had a few relaxing days since leaving Assateague. We overnighted in a Sam’s Club parking lot in Annapolis, MD, where Bob rediscovered the wonder of warehouse shopping. We don’t belong to any of those stores, but Bob went into Sam’s just for something to do and returned with a membership, a can of Folgers the size of a trash can (for $6), a zero gravity chair (for $20, compared to the one he almost bought back home for $50), two cans of pistachio mix nuts and a value pack of jerky. Oh, he also had lunch thanks to the many food samples set up around the store. Now, Bob does not like to shop — fifteen minutes and he’s ready to go. So, the look of sheer delight on his face coming out of Sam’s was worth the membership fee!
The reason we stayed in a parking lot was to prevent our having to drive through DC traffic on a Friday night. Saturday morning we headed out from Annapolis and discovered that traffic is a way of life in the DC metro area! We were amazed how many cars were on the road for a Saturday. Police presence, too, as there were several troopers with cars pulled over all along our route. Note to anyone driving in the DC area, watch your speed!
On Saturday, we arrived at Rudd’s Creek Recreation Area campground in Boydton, VA. Boydton is a sleepy little town located between the larger towns of Summer Hill and Clarkesville in south central Virginia just miles from the North Carolina border. Rudd’s Creek Reservoir, on which the campground is located, is a 50,000 acre lake that boasts being named the #1 lake for Crappie fishing in the US by one popular fishing magazine, and also hosts numerous national fishing tournaments. The campground was built by the US Army Corp of Engineers (COE). COE campgrounds are known for being attractive, well maintained and affordable and this park was all of the above. Using our America the Beautiful Senior Lifetime Pass, three nights here cost us $39, a real bargain when you consider that some campgrounds that are not nearly as well maintained charge more than that for a single night.
Rudd’s Creek was a nice opportunity to relax, cook breakfast and pizza over the campfire, walk, read and play several intense games of Parchisi. Just what the doctor ordered!
On Tuesday, we continued the drive south, stopping at a county park campground in Salisbury, NC, about 40 minutes north of Charlotte. It’s a quirky little park, lots of activities on the public side of a small pond and a heavily wooded campground on the other. Most of the campsites are not level, and their reservation website was probably the worst I’ve encountered in the last two years. But, the people here are extraordinarily pleasant and the campground shower houses are the cleanest we’ve seen in two years.
The town of Salisbury is not a bad little town. It has just the right amount of retail development, many beautiful southern brick homes and a historic downtown. Salisbury, NC, is the home of Cheerwine Soda, Food Lion grocery stores and Rack Room shoe stores. We found a brewery/restaurant called Morgan Ridge Brewery & Eatery that had some of the best beers we’ve tasted in a long time. So much so that we purchased growlers of our two favorites to share with the Noel cousins when we see them at the races this weekend! The food was also excellent, the burgers being their specialty. After brewing the beer, their beer mash is fed to the cattle that ultimately become the burgers. They were quite good with thin-sliced and spiced potato wedges and super-crispy, peppery onion rings. What a meal! I don’t generally describe food, but this brew pub was a great find. And, lucky us, Wednesday was $10 burgers and $4 flights day at Morgan Ridge! You can’t beat that.
Anyway, it was a short stay in Salisbury, but very worthwhile. We’d like to come back to explore this area a little more fully. Nighttime temps in the middle of winter get down to the 30’s, and daytime temps average in the low 50’s. It’s an hour or less from 3 metropolitan areas, Charlotte, Winston-Salem and Greensboro.
Moving on today with a Cracker Barrel parking lot tonight, landing in Aiken, SC, on Friday!