The weather was perfect for a trip to the beach. We have been visiting the same location on the Gulf each time while we have been staying here. The Alabama Gulf State Park has a very nice setup which includes bathrooms, inside showers, and boardwalks.
We had a great time.
Next stop was Big Beach Brewery. They had some nice beer but the non-alcoholic drinks were a surprise. The Big Jerk Soda Company from Pensacola make flavored sodas. I had the blueberry peach. I was good.
Time for dinner. Just 2 blocks down was the Acme Oyster House which is a great restaurant. Loved everything we ordered.
The fort is far out on the end of a peninsula and over an hour drive so we stopped for lunch at an interesting restaurant. The Sassy Bass was fun with good food and interesting drinks.
On to the fort. It was first established by a Spanish Governor to blockade Mobile port which was under British control. He drove the British out and kept control until 1813 when the US forces forced the Spanish to leave.
Once the United States took the fort, it was expanded several times.
The fort is very old and limestone is weeping from the walls.
Climbing on the fort gave a nice view of the fort, bay, and the lighthouse.
We had a bit of wildlife to see. An Osprey on a tower who I called to and it responded. In the bay, there were several dolphins "playing" we think.
The museum was small but had some interesting displays.
Around the outside of the fort were several gun emplacements along with storyboards on the battles that took place here.
After touring the fort, we took a walk around the point along the shore. There were several people fishing and several birds begging for fish. We picked up a bag full of trash. It is always good to clean areas that we walk.
Today, we visited a place that both of us have not been to for a very long time. We pass by the ship every time we drive west on I-10 through Mobile but have not been on the ship for decades.
Warning: History lessons to follow. Who knew?! Still pretty great!
There are many really good displays for us to see along with touring the battleship. There are lots of planes and other vehicles. Almost every plane is on loan from the Pensacola National Naval Aviation Museum. I am glad they share planes that they are not currently showing.
One surprise was ARMY ONE, President’s Helicopter used by President Regan. This helicopter was used when Marine One was too large for the situation. The only time I found that it was used was for his visit to Venice.
A replica of the H L Hunley which was built in Mobile and was the first contact sub to sink a ship. With a crew of 8, the sub could approach a ship at 4 knots just below the surface and push an arm with explosives into the target just below the waterline. The original is currently displayed in Charleston where it sank.
It seems that Mobile was the birthplace of several innovations. The first Mardi Gras was held in Mobile. Several dishes like Fried Crab Claws, West Indies (Crab meat) Salad, Gumbo ( I know! Really!) were created. It was also the first place where it is known that Okra was used in a meal in a restaurant.
The USN Drum was great! It was tight and had many low ceilings but we did not bump our heads even once. She arrived in Pearl Harbor 6 months after the attack. She went on to serve in other areas of the Pacific during the war. She was credited with sinking 15 ships and survived several times being under depth charge attacks by the enemy.
From the deck of the Drum, we watched a bit of wildlife. There were several Canada Geese and goslings walking around the fields beyond the sub.
Time to head down into the sub. We started in the bow torpedo room and ended in the stern.
Walt Disney drew the mascot of the Drum.
The rooms on ship are laid out as or close to how they would have been when the ship was in service.
The control room was fascinating. It is hard to believe anyone could keep all those dials and valves straight in their head to operate the boat.
The rest of the sub was just as interesting. I cannot believe that over 83 men served on the Drum.
The Drum was used in a movie.
They also have a PB MK3 on display which was used to patrol the Panama Canal and much of the Gulf Coast.
Back in the display building. Wow! Lots of history. They have a limited amount of space but use it very well. There was a very nice display on the Tuskegee airmen.
Time to go see the Battleship.
Battleships are huge. It is over 100 feet wide and 680 feet long. A crew of of over 2300 but could add on more if needed. The thickest armor is 18". Max speed 28 knots or over 32 mph. Nine 16" main guns which are accurate to 21 miles and firing huge shells. Imagine the damage this would do. Wow!
Time to go below decks for a bit.
Several movies were filmed on the battleship. USS Indianapolis, Under Siege, Crimson Tide, Rapid Fire, and, of course, War and Remembrance.
There were several nice displays on the history of the ship from the beginning to its decommissioning.
Many rooms are set as they would have been when the ship was in service.
Back up on deck to the bow. Wow the anchor chain is huge.
We were able to climb inside a big gun. Worse for wear but fascinating. I can not even imagine the sound in here when the guns fired.
We loved our visit. Lots of stairs and walking the decks. The weather was great.
We have had a great time at the lake. It is very convenient for us to visit some family or for them to visit us and do some fishing. Not only is it a pretty park but they have great playground and the grounds are well maintained.
The park has been nearly empty while we have been here. Some days there were only about a dozen RV's in the entire park of over 70 sites. Even on Easter weekend, the park was less than half full.
One surprise was a pair of Canada Geese and their 8 goslings. There are a pair of ducks and two pairs of geese living in the park but only one had babies. Mom and Dad are working hard to teach their babies and keep them safe. The male even came up to us while we were at our picnic table and hissed to let us know not to get to close.
We did get to do something new. This last Christmas, we received an inflatable kayak and finally we got an opportunity to use it. It is a tight fit but worked great. Our grandkids liked having a ride as well.
We are a couple who have started on a new adventure...