Remember that when you leave this Earth, you can take with you nothing that you have received, only what you have given, a full heart enriched by honest service, love, sacrifice and courage. -St. Francis of Assisi

Monday, April 24, 2017

A *FREE Vacation

*Free - nothing is free :)
You will need to trade some hours of work for this *Free vacation

What does work-kamping mean to you?

Why do I "work-kamp"? 

This is a breakdown of my Cody, WY/Yellowstone "vacation in 2014"
May 5 to August 5, 2014
I left San Antonio,TX on May 5th and arrived in Cody on May 14th
archived blog posts can be found on the right side of the blog


Total Gross Wages...$3488.00   Travel Expenses*...$1496.00
Net  $1992.00

*Travel expenses are RV fuel and all RV campsite fees from
the time I started out in Texas in May until the time I left Cody in August
this includes the "job site rent" and trips on my days off 

I worked approx. 55 days/11 weeks
An 11 week working "vacation"
Note: this is the lowest paying workamping job I have had
I wanted to visit Yellowstone, so I agreed to it
My job: phone reservations
Bonus: meeting other work-kampers 

Where did I go and what did I see during these three months...

underlined titles will link to my blog posts

A benefit of working in Cody is that most of the attractions were free or discounted

Seasonal employees start with a tour from the Visitor's Center and then receive
 discounts/free passes to the attractions, including river rafting

I enjoyed all of these free attractions:
Buffalo Bill Center of the West
Trolley Tour of Cody
Rafting the Shoshone River
Old Trail Town
Heart Mountain Museum
Concerts in the Park
Music Revue

The Rodeo was a $10 annual pass, less than a single day admission

Along the way, or on my days off, I visited these towns and places

Chief Joseph Scenic Byway
Yellowstone National Park
Casper, Cody, Wapiti, Lovell
Wind River Scenic Byway
Shell Falls in Shell Canyon - Bighorn Mountains

Buffalo Bill Dam
Wapiti Ranger Station
Shoshone National Forest Campgrounds
Pahaska Tepee - Buffalo Bill's Camp
Shoshone River Trail


Red Lodge, Nye
Beartooth Highway - National Scenic Byway
Devil's Canyon Overlook
 Chief Plenty Coups State Park - National Historic Site
Cooney State Park, MT

As you can see from my list above and from the photos in my blog posts during the summer of 2014, this is a beautiful area of the country to visit. My RV is easy to setup/move and I would usually pack up and go camping on my days off of work.

If you plan to visit this area, you will need a week or more to see everything in Cody, you could easily spend 2 days at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West.

Depending on where you stay in or near Yellowstone, you will want at least a week, if not more time, to explore Yellowstone.  The park is huge and it takes a long time to get from section to section. This is one of the reasons that I opted to take a bus tour while in Yellowstone.

It took some time to set up this list, looking back and reading my blog posts from 2014 to make the links.

I miss the big beautiful blue skies and open prairies of Montana. I plan to return to this area.

If you don't need to get paid, and don't mind kicking in $$ for some of the expenses, you can "google" - Volunteer Vacations - and find some great places to visit.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The Lighthouse Lakes Park - Texas

It's Tax Day!
Just a few more hours of work
and then time to travel
and take a break

Here is a post that never made it
to the blog last year.

April 2016

Wandering around the bay on a day off work. 

Time to get a kayak, it would probably have to be an inflatable because I have no way to carry a kayak with my RV.

There are several places around here that offer kayak tours or that rent kayaks.  I have no way to transport a rental, so a tour is probably the best way to get out on the water.

Kayak Trails
This area is the launching point for kayakers to enter the Lighthouse Lakes Paddling Trails, which take visitors through the back lakes behind the historic, 1857 Lydia Ann Lighthouse. 

Aransas Pass Light Station

Lydia Ann Lighthouse

The lighthouse was on the other side of the channel and difficult to photograph

The lighthouse from which the trails take their name figured in the Civil War,
 and its original Fresnel lens still lies buried somewhere in the surrounding marsh.

The Lighthouse Lakes Park is ecologically important because of the great diversity of coastal habitats in this geographic area.  

This park is located on Harbor Island which contains one of the densest populations of black mangroves on the Texas Coast.

The park offers kayaking, fishing, birding and nature watching.  Home to the largest kayaking paddle trail in the State of Texas. Established by Texas Parks & Wildlife, it is 6 miles south of Aransas pass along the Aransas Channel on the Redfish Bay Causeway.

Lots of industry near the water, this rig is"parked" near the ferry terminal

"Port Aransas is about to become the home of another offshore production rig, to be put in storage on Harbor Island."
"The massive structure is expected to be towed from the Gulf of Mexico to Harbor Island around July 15, said Burt MoorhouseSouth Texas operations manager with Gulf Copper, the firm that leases the Harbor Island property where the rig will go."

Love to watch the changing light at the end of the day

Part of the reason that I am so far behind with posting to the blog, is a problem with getting pictures from my iPhone to my computer.  My old iPhone stopped working and I purchased a new iPhone in September 2015.  In the past, I would plug the iphone into the laptop and photos would automatically transfer to Picasa.  But with the changes to iPhone and iCloud and Picasa not being supported by Google, I was not willing to struggle with all of this. 

I still do not totally understand all of this and I am not so sure that I want everything to be in the cloud, but then again, I am putting my life out there with this blog.

I do want to record these moments and photos here.  I have printed my 2011 blog posts to a book and plan to print all of the years. 

Drake Tax Software

Overnight stays in these states:

Overnight stays in these states:
It is the sandstorm that shape the stone statues of the Desert. It is the struggles of Life that form a person's character ~ Native American Proverb