Day four dawned, as chilly as the other days, but with us both either getting used to the hound being on the bed or enjoying the fact that she wasn't on the bed for much of the night. I wouldn't describe us as perky, but we were better than we had been on previous mornings. Again I fired up the heating, but only for a few minutes, just to speed us along.
Given a heroic effort of the part of Mrs T, the fresh water tank on board was looking sufficiently healthy that we decided that I could use the the in-house facilities rather than heading off to the shower block, which was nice. I don't mind the Park provided services but it's good to be able to use your own from time to time. Our next camping trip will see us hooked up to both water and sewer, so I can shower all I like inside the Airstream, which will also be nice.
Packing up days generally follow the same pattern; a slow breakfast, a slow morning and a slow pack-up process. The day's weather was looking good so the awning went away dry, as did the big patio mat and door mat, which makes a change. We're both quite used to the process now so it all goes along quite nicely and I was ready to hitch up well ahead of check-out time. This pitch had been unusual in that rather than back onto it, the position of the fire pit and the electricity pillar meant that I had to tow the trailer on with the car in front. There was certainly plenty of room to unhitch and back out off the site so it wasn't any great problem; today, then, I had to drive the car onto the site, hitch up and back the Airstream off the site. There's a first time for everything, I suppose. Having said that, when we were staying at a campground near New Orleans, I did reverse off the pitch there, the difference was that I didn't have to; I was just making a bee-line for the dump station which was 30 yards to the rear of the trailer in a dead straight line!
This morning, we trundled around to the Park's dump station, which was hidden cunningly in the woods, and discharged the tanks. We've learned to put a pit of water back into the waste tanks when we're done, add the enzyme-based cleaning stuff and let it all slosh around on the trip back. It dislodges solids and helps keep the tank and its sensors in good working order. We always have to visit the dump station before we camp so we just discharge then and have a clean, or relatively clean, pair of tanks to start filling again. We learn as we go along.
The trip back was good, our gas mileage looking quite respectable until I was on the final leg and zooming down the highway at 70mph, rather than my normal, sedate and legal 62. We were still above 13 miles to the US Gallon (16 miles to the imperial gallon), which is quite good for a car that everyone says is too feeble to tow a two-and-a-half ton Airstream. There are plenty of vehicles here that would struggle to maintain that mileage without towing anything, so I'm quite pleased. Of course, we were still on the higher octane fuel so I think that might have something to do with the good figures.
So, back home safely and a quick review of the trip reveals a total towing distance of 666 Km, and two tanks of gas used. We decided that we liked Earl Rowe, even if we didn't use a lot of its facilities, including the big outdoor pool. The pitches were big and well separated from their neighbours, and all had good grass coverage. I know that grass, particularly when wet, isn't always your best friend when trying to get on and off it, but it does look nice, especially as everywhere was kept reasonably neat and tidy. My only complaint was the noisy neighbours, but then there's not a lot that the Park can do about that.
We are off again soon, and slightly further afield, so please watch this space.
Mr Toad - Airstreamer
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