Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

Nothing Like an Ocean Front Site

Sunday November 18 to Friday November 23, 2018                             Most Recent Posts:
Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area                      Enjoying Atlantic Beach Campground                         
Flagler Beach, Florida                                                           Trials and Tribulations of a Chronic Illness on the Road

We stay in several state parks in Florida which are near the Atlantic Ocean or the Gulf of Mexico to one degree or another but this is our only actual ocean front site and thus my favorite of every park we visit in Florida.

We’re making our way along the north east Florida coast heading south hitting all the ocean front state parks.  From here in Fort Clinch we travel 112 miles south to Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area.

20181119_160409There are two campgrounds here, one on the ocean and one by the Inland Waterway.  I work hard at getting us an ocean front site each year.

Since Gamble Rogers is only 109 miles from Fort Clinch, we don’t leave until check out time at 1pm so that we don’t arrive at Gamble Rogers too much before Check in time at 3pm.

Here’s the view out our front window.  We’ve pulled into the site so the utilities are on the “wrong” side but we have extensions for both electric cords and water hoses for just this situation..

We can see, not only the sunrise from our site but at least the skies of the sunset on the other side of the park.

The sun setting gives us some lovely pink clouds in the east.


Here’s how the sunset looks from our picnic table with Winnona on the right and Ruby in front of me.  I’ve tried to figure out how to keep the light from the setting from making everything dark but so far I can’t find any settings on my Canon SX 50 without going into manual mode I suppose about which I know nothing.

IMG_3557 sunset

Once the sun is actually down that same view lightens up for a while before dark.


Next day I’m out at dawn.  I can check from my bedroom window to see how the color is.  Sweet!


The shore is merely steps away.


On the way to Florida among our other mishaps, the electric cable between Ruby and Winnona was jerked out from Winnona and the plug lost leaving us with the bare wires and no lights on Ruby.  For that reason, we drove separately between Fort Clinch and Gamble Rogers.  On that trip, all of a sudden there were some ominous noises coming from the right rear tire.  Very ominous.

Once we arrived, I did some research and found Karl’s Auto Repair had good reivews and was ony about 8 miles south of us in Ormond Beach.  I gave him a call and he said to bring her in to see what was up.

20181120_10344520181120_103535I waited while Ruby went up in the air, Karl looked around underneath and determined that the brake pads and rotors would have to be replaced because the ????  had locked up.  He could have the parts tomorrow if I’d bring her back.   So I did.  Should be an hour or so he said until he found that his supplier had sent him the wrong parts and they’d have to bring them up from Daytona Beach.  So, without a shuttle or other transportation I hung out at Karl’s for over 3 hours instead of 1.   But the job got done and I was eventually on my way with no more noises and a new rotor and new brake pads on both sides.

She’s ready to roll.  Thanks Karl.  Why in the world are the boats on top of Ruby still?  Because of yet another problem discovered on our way here.  This time with the hullivator.  But only one problem per post if I can help it.  Hullivator trouble saved for next time.


But no more problems just yet.  A nice calming walk on the beach in the afternoon is what’s needed.   The temperatures have been really lovely this week, in the 70’s, but the winds have been strong making sitting on the beach not so much fun and walking one way great while coming back not so much.

Still, I don’t think there is any place I’d rather be just now.



The waves are big enough to bring out the surfers but no one else is in the water.  These guys didn’t get up during the time I watched them.


Here is a video of the waves and the wind.

Some evenings I walk over across Highway A1A to the inland waterway side of the park where I can watch the sunset from the boat launch.



Love the reflection of the clouds.



Looking east I find the afterglow and a full moon in the sky.


At the stone entrance way to the ocean side campground, this shot of stone, cactus, palm and full moon caught my eye.


Later, this is our front window view.  I have to tilt my screen forward to see the real glimmer on the water as it was at the time.


Thanksgiving Day dawns with whispy clouds and the seemingly ever present winds.


Another beautiful sunrise over the Atlantic.



Too windy for David on the beach.  How windy was it?  You can’t hear a thing I’m saying in this video but it will tell the story just the same.  Instead of down on the beach, David takes advantage of the patio to do a little reading and napping too of course.



Most Flagler restaurants are seafood places of course, or pizza (HA!).  We tried one last year or was it the year before for Thanksgiving.  Whenever we were here last.  It didn’t impress so this year we did our own.

We’re very thankful to be here again this year here together.

This is David’s first helping!


I should have taken a picture of my plate to show the difference in what we prefer to eat.  This is the first day of left overs.  If you look carefully you’ll see no potatoes, small amount of turkey and 50% oyster dressing.  Compare with David’s above where the turkey dominates the plate.  We each get what we like the best.  Delicious!

One more week coming up here in my favorite spot before we have to leave.



  1. Thanks for sharing those beautiful sunrises that I am never awake for. Beauiful!

  2. Those East Coast beaches....they seldom disappoint. Sherry, I need your inspiration to get up and see the sun rises. I have come to enjoy our beautiful Texas sunsets though. Such a lovely spot you two have to enjoy the beach. You know I always love David's hearty appetite....and Thanksgiving is the best meal of all. I too am thankful that both of you are together to celebrate yet another Thanksgiving. We have wonderful memories of David being here last year for a Texas Thanksgiving.

  3. That beach front site is magnificent. I imagine that "working hard" entails early rising, phone calls over and over within seconds of posted availability, and whatever else. I had to do it this year as well, and as you know I wasn't as successful as you have been. Still, we will be waterfront at a few places at least. Hurricane Michael wiped out our one of our favorite campgrounds at St Joe, so instead we will be at a private place in overflow at Indian Pass for that week, half way between St Joe and Appalachicola. I will add my thanks that you are David had such a great Thanksgiving together. Oh, and by the way, I think the only way to deal with that kind of contrast between very dark and very light is with post processing, aka Lightroom or something similar. I know of no camera settings that can handle it. Still, settings or not, your sky photos are always spectacular.

  4. Gee, you would think I would check spelling before I post.

  5. Hi Sherry - If you do not have your camera manual with you, it is available online. I was able to download the manual for your camera at:


    It is 42MB in size, so might take a while if you don't have a fast connection. Once it is downloaded, you can do a search for the information you need. Just click the two right-facing chevrons near the top right of the page, and a SEARCH box will appear.

    Virtual hugs,


  6. Beautiful sky pictures. So nice that a state park has ocean front spaces. It was not until I saw the moon that I remembered you post from the past. Hope you are enjoying the great weather we are having again. This has been a cool and nice winter so far.

  7. Beautiful sunrise and sunset pictures! The videos of the ocean made me miss the beach! So nice that your site is so close to the beach! xxxooo

  8. Glad you got your favorite east coast campsite...it is a winner!!! Also glad you were able to spend Thanksgiving sharing such a wonderful meal in a wonderful spot!! David's appetite always makes us smile:o)) Where does he put it????

  9. Love the sunrise and sunset pictures. Used to see some beautiful sunrises when we lived in MD (in the winter when the leaves were gone - spectacular after an ice storm), but now in Texas we get the beautiful sunsets every evening - unfortunately without the sound of the surf. Wish I could have made it there while you were in Gamble Rogers. Anyway, glad you had a nice Thanksgiving and looking forward to visiting.

  10. I always try to park for view and light and also carry extensions. So nice to be close to the beach. Glad you can be there soaking it in. Plus watch sunrise and set with water reflections. I am thankful you two are out there doing what you love. Where does David put all that food? ;)
    It's time to learn manual mode, stop sweating it and just try. Do you use any post-processing software?

  11. Oh my you captured so many beautiful skies!! I had to go back and look at all of them again. You always get the best spots at that park. Glad you were able to get Ruby all fixed up - no fun hanging out at the shop :-( I love Bill's sausage dressing, but I do miss oyster dressing on Thanksgiving - my plate would look like yours!

  12. Frankly, I feel your pictures are great the way they are, but if you wish to easily "fool" your camera's auto exposure, simply aim at a darker area a small distance away from the sun (the ground or sky) and press the shutter button half way. Your camera will hold that exposure, and you can then re-aim (still holding the shutter button down half way) and take your picture. Hey, "film" is cheap, so you can play with it as much as you want!

    Thanks for taking all of us along on your journeys!

  13. Wow, some awesome sunrise pictures. Looks like you scored the best site in the place. We've been doing maintenance too, between our lot and a truck seat Dave's been busy fixing things, when he's not fishing.

  14. What a wonderful site! I'd have been blubbering like a baby when the time came to have to leave it. :c(

  15. You always get so lucky to snag that beachfront site. I think even I would get up early for those sunrises (maybe!).

  16. Your sunrise and sunset photos are gorgeous!! One of these years I want to stay at Gamble Rogers, but I never make plans for Florida far enough in advance to get a site there. You must have the absolute best site in the park!
    Glad you've had such lovely temperatures for walking on the beach. When the wind is blowing I always try to make myself walk "into" the wind first so that I can enjoy the return journey with the wind at my back.
    Your Thanksgiving dinner looked healthy and so delicious!

  17. Hey, Sherry we are here now. Thanks to your previous post about how you love Gamble Rodgers SP that I was able to snag a site by the ocean. Love it. But unlike you the cold snap is hovering over us, it's too cold to even sit outside. So still not able to see the beautiful sunrises, but at least your photo is telling me I should get my butt out of bed to enjoy it like you had been.

  18. Great pictures! I see you are a stuffing lover as am I. Looks like y'all went all out on the meal.

  19. What a view and gorgeous sunrises and sunsets! Bummer about the car troubles. I love the Thanksgiving photo of you and Dad.


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