Wednesday, December 8, 2021

The Gulf Coast

The last couple of days we traveled along the Texas and Louisiana coast. We started with a camping night on the beach, just a few feet from the high tide line. The Brazoria County beach near Sufside is hard packed and easy to drive on - even a large camper van. We enjoyed walks on the beach and the sound of the surf all night. The weather for our coast days was around 57ºF - 61ºF and mostly cloudy. 

Our seaside camping spot on the beach

The second night was at Sea Rim State Park at the far SE corner of Texas. Our van got its first ferry ride across to the Bolivar peninsula. There were quite a variety of birds there and many signs warning of alligators. It was cool, so we didn't see any gators, but apparently there was a large one in the adjacent campsite. Our adjacent campers showed us the photos. There were many mosquitoes. 

Bebop on the striped beach

After we left the park, we drove past a large oil refinery. The parking lot looked like a pickup truck dealer. Almost every brand, type, and size were represented - hundreds of pickup trucks. Before we crossed into Louisiana, we made a short detour into Port Arthur for a quick van cleaning and gas fill. It was only four miles each way, but it took forever. We caught every red light - and they were all really long cycle lights - even when no one was coming on the cross streets. It was so bad, it seemed they were intentionally programmed to make you stop at every one. At least the car wash and vacuum were inexpensive.

Elena contemplating the Gulf of Mexico

Then we crossed into Louisiana and took Hwy 82 across the coast. There were hardly any vehicles along the entire road. Marsh, swamp, and water birds dominated. We took another ferry and passed through Cameron, which has been hit by many hurricanes, including one in Aug of 2020. There were numerous destroyed or damaged structures for many miles. Finally, we turned a bit inland to our evening destination of Palmetto Island State Park. It was easy to tell when we got close - palmettos appeared everywhere along the road.

Bebop checking the Palmettos

Here are a few birds along the coast.



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