We ended up camping at the San Mateo Campground in San Onofre during New Year’s week for 5 nights. If I had to rate this campground, I would probably give it just an average score. We haven’t been to too many sites so far with the Mali Mish Airstream but Catalina State Park in Tuscon, The Shady Dell in Bisbee and El Capitan State Beach just outside of Santa Barbara are still my top three campgrounds so far. And if these are my references, San Mateo is just “alright”.
We ended up staying in three different sites during our stay. Everyone and their mom wanted to stay near the beach for New Year’s so we had to book three separate sites in order for us to be able to stay for as long as we did. It wasn’t too big of a deal. Dan is getting really good at backing in the Airstream in one shot. Yes, one shot. I don’t know how he does it. I couldn’t even drive into that spot forward in one shot.
As you can see, the campground had decent foliage for privacy to the left and right of us. The first spot we reserved actually backed up to another site. You can see another camper peeking through just behind our Airstream. It’s a little awkward for us to have neighbors so close, especially since our “dining room” is at the back of the Airstream.
For most of our stay, we had spots that bordered the road, which we actually preferred. I guess I would rather look at trees and birds while I eat my dinner than people going about their business. I don’t like of idea of people watching us through our panoramic windows. Right? Or is it just me?
The road is not a busy one so there wasn’t too much car noise to worry about at all. But there was another type of noise that was a little annoying. Gunfire. There is a firing range close to the site, and the sound of gunfire echoes through the camp most weekends and some evenings. It didn’t bother Ava too much though, unless it was reading time. Shhhhhh.
I always tell myself that I must take more pictures of the actual campsites we are staying in but I somehow keep forgetting. But I had a decent excuse or two. We actually didn’t end up spending too much time at the campground itself. There was way too much stuff for us to do in a short amount of time. We do, after all, have a handful of good friends in the area… and a beach just a mile down the road that was calling our names.
And most people who know where San Onofre is, also know that is next to a nuclear power plant with a silly nickname. A nickname that I will not type out for you because I don’t want people googling for that word to end up here. Let’s just say it starts with a B and doesn’t appear to need a bra anytime soon. 😉
A major complaint we had about the campground is the Wi-Fi service. Or the lack of it. Don’t tell anyone but it was actually kinda nice to relax and watch movies after dinner during this holiday season instead of blogging. I did realize that it is a lot harder to blog about things after the fact. It’s not so fresh in my memory, I guess.
Dan does a lot, A LOT, of blogging about connecting while you are on the road but he has somehow not committed to any just yet. I guess we aren’t full-timing just yet and that extra $60 bucks or so a month is not something we want to add to our budget. So it off to Barnes and Noble to blog, twitter and facebook.
The Barnes and Noble was located at the Irvine Spectrum. This outdoor mall has really grown in the past few years. It now has a carousal and train ride for the kids… and over the holiday it even has a mini-skating rink. I tried to get Ava to nap while Dan was on the internet but it was a no go. Too many Christmas lights. Too many water fountains. Too many people. Too many distractions.
For New Year’s Eve we headed to our friend Nicole’s place to bring in the new year. We packed up enough stuff to get us through the night (which is a lot of stuff when you have a toddler who loves shoes), threw Yoda into her cat carrier (yes, she came too) and left the Airstream at the campsite for one lonely night (just one).