September 3, 2019 Wanchese, NC to Lumberton, NC


We set the alarm for 7 AM to get an early start, but got up before that.  A few more campers left early this morning.  It was a bright, sunny day, but muggy and a temp already at 83 degrees.  We were on the road by 8:30. We were taking Highway 64 away from the coast.  Our first bridge took us over the Croatian Sound from Roanoke Island to the mainland where there was no traffic.  It was eerily empty.

After 13 miles, we crossed the Alligator River and the Alligator-Pungo Canal which is part of the Intracoastal Waterway.

We dealt with the bridge tender at this location when we passed this way on our boat trip to Chesapeake Bay a few years ago. This was a bridge to remember.

The reason this was so memorable is because the bridge tender refused to open the bridge for us to pass because there was a barge working below.  He said we would have to wait a few hours.  We finally convinced him to slide the barge out of the way and open the bridge for us, then we were on our way.  If he didn't, we would have been stuck there in our boat for hours.  We remembered that like it was yesterday.  At 9:30, Bob had an ARC meeting via phone that he had to do (he's the chairman).  It was a short meeting of only 20 minutes and he was able to participate while driving.  Traffic remained light as we traveled on this little-used highway. We saw dead, on the side of the road, what looked like a black bear cub.  Then we saw a sign for bears.  Not long after that, we saw a sign for "Red Wolves".  We've never seen that before.  Apparently, the U.S. Forest Service has reintroduced red wolves into the area and people are not happy about that.  We saw a billboard telling people not to trust what the U.S. Forest Service says.  Interesting!  Listening to the hurricane reports on our drive today, everyone seems to be waiting for Dorian to make its move north.  Waiting is the pits!  When we left Roanoke Island this morning, we traveled due west until we hooked up with I-95, which took us south.  These signs on the Interstate were a constant reminder of the hurricane still out there and that North Carolina could still be in its path.  

Traffic was light for the most part on I-95, except around the larger cities, but the 265-mile drive went well with no issues.  We arrived at our campground, Lumberton/I-95 KOA in Lumberton, NC at 1:30.  (We have camped here twice in the past when it was Sleepy Bear Campground, but it has now become a KOA-Journey, which means it has easy on-easy off access to the highway.)  

The buildings are brand new and the grounds have been improved. We have pull-thru site #20, which makes for a fast exit tomorrow since we can stay connected to the truck.

Set up was fast, too.  In no time, we were hooked up and sitting in the AC.  It was a hot, steamy 92 degrees when we arrived. From our back window, we could see the Interstate and there was a stream of utility trucks heading south to help with the hurricane.   I went for a swim in the pool which was wonderful since I had the pool all to myself!  Bob relaxed from the long drive. We had an easy dinner and relaxed until the sun went down. Then Auggie and I took our evening walk when things cooled off.   We'll set the alarm again for an early rising, so we can get on the road to beat the traffic and the heat.  From here, our destination is just south of Atlanta.  Let's hope we have another uneventful drive!


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