Did some beach camping with two of my brothers and my favorite dog last weekend in Port Aransas. I was afraid the stakes my tent came with wouldn’t hold up in the sand with wind (Spoiler alert: they didn’t!) so I stitched up some sandbag anchors the night before and crossed my fingers. There was a tiny learning curve but they worked out perfect once I figured out what I was doing … and they were free!
My plan was to camp at Mustang Island State Park and walk over to my brothers camped north of the jetties. My plan was doomed from the start. The park was having issues taking credit cards when I got there and I was asked to come back in two hours. Not really knowing where to go for two hours by myself, I politely offered to just go get cash instead of waiting. The woman told me to just go drive down to the beach without my permit, set up camp, and I could come back to pay up later. I thought that was awesome and a much better idea… well… until after watching all three cars in front of me at the beach entrance get stuck in the sand and have to be pushed out. I opted out of trying to drive on the beach and ditched my car at the headquarters instead. That woman could’ve saved ALL of those people from getting stuck if she told them not to try it if they were in sedans. I would’ve parked in the lot close to the beach, walked over, and camped there anyway but was told it was for day use only. I think paying more than the people just there for the day means I should be able to park my car wherever I want but that’s just me. A little frustrated, I grabbed my day pack and walked over to hang out with my brothers for the rest of the afternoon. They gave me a ride back later to get the rest of my gear so I could stay with them instead. So… technically only my car stayed at Mustang Island SP, but we were camped just outside the park boundaries. *shrug* Close enough.
I spent the next couple days watching the guys surf, testing out my homemade sand bag anchors for my tent, cringing every time I put my waterproof camera in the water, laughing like little sisters do after my brother cut his leg, roasting Starbursts over the fire, scoring four whole sand dollars, and crab hunting at night. I apologize for ever thinking headlamps were dorky. Those ghost crabs didn’t stand a chance! By “hunting” I mean spotting them with the headlamp from a distance and then running maniacally towards them as they dash into the ocean or back into sand tunnels. I got some decent video of some crabs and clams but haven’t looked through them yet. The clams were burying themselves in the sand all over the place. There were soooooo many. I tried to sneak up from underneath on the little crabs and shrimp that live in the sargassum but just got blurry underwater pictures. Still figuring out all the settings for my camera so next time will be better.
On our way to drop me off at my car, there was a minivan stuck so we stopped real quick to push them out. As we were leaving the guy ran up and offered us beer. It was super nice of him. We said no thanks since we were headed home but it was awesome anyway. More karma for the trail next year!
Sidenote: Came home to growing sunflowers!