Travel

Labor Day Weekend at Emerald Isle

We decided to go tent camping at Emerald Isle on Labor Day weekend. I know this sounds bizarre, even one of my sisters asked who came up with the idea because she also wanted to go to the beach but can’t do camping and not to mention tent camping. My dad and second sister decided to join us.

This is our first time tent camping and it was a shock for my dad and sister when we got to the campground.  I knew what to expect, so it didn’t bother me at all.  We left Friday at midnight and got to the campground by 7:30 am after making a short stop to buy grocery before we got there. After the initial shock, we got out of the car to look around. It didn’t take us that long to pitch our tent as we had practice in my dad’s backyard before.  One of our new neighbors were spying on us and we didn’t know this since the campground was very quiet in the morning.  They came out and told us later that they were watching from inside their camper and couldn’t believe how fast we had it up.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/15sec, ISO 3200, focal length 17mm, evaluative metering

The image above was taken Saturday evening, and Bo set up another small tent next to the big one that sleeps 6 people.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/4, 1/5sec, ISO 3200, focal length 17mm, evaluative metering

I don’t mind tent camping but it does have its drawback. It was extremely hot during the daytime and this campground has no tree, and no shades so we stayed at the beach all day.  I kind of feel bad for my dad that he can’t go back to the tent to rest or take a nap. Then Sunday night was extremely windy, and kind of scary since we didn’t have any place to go, and our car was packed with our personal belongings. We really liked the camping atmosphere, and the people are very friendly.  The price is dirt cheap for only $45 per night, as the Lao/Thai saying “sleep in the middle of the dirt and eat in the middle of the sand”, but tent camping might be too much for my dad and we are seriously thinking about investing in a small camper for our future camping trips.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/3sec, ISO 3200, focal length 17mm, evaluative metering

We stayed in Ocean front hotels in the past and it was kind of pricey, you definitely can’t beat $45 per night and right by the ocean front as you can see on the right hand side of this picture. You get to bring your own sleeping gear which is a plus for me, and just make sure you bring Clorox wipes if you use their bathroom and wear flips flop inside the bathhouse.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/11, 1/320sec, ISO 100, focal length 17mm, evaluative metering

In most campgrounds you can bring your pet, and it’s a family oriented place where children can roam around.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/25sec, ISO 800, focal length 29mm, evaluative metering

We rented an Ocean front house in the past during the week of July 4th, and one week rental for a 3 bedroom was about $1,500. At this price we could only take a vacation once a year.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/100sec, ISO 1600, focal length 70mm, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/125sec, ISO 3200, focal length 17mm, evaluative metering

The ocean was so calm and clean on Saturday, and this is only 1 week after Hurricane Irene hit the area.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/1000sec, ISO 200, focal length 70mm, evaluative metering

There were schools of fish swimming on Saturday and it’s really a sight to see them up close. I’m glad I got this shot, you can see the school of fish below.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/2500sec, ISO 200, focal length 200mm, closeup cropped, evaluative metering

The seagulls and pelicans were having a great time fishing for food.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/22, 1/60sec, ISO 100, focal length 200mm, closeup cropped, evaluative metering

I can see where they get the name of the place, the water is green like emerald.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/22, 1/80sec, ISO 100, focal length 159mm, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/1000sec, ISO 200, focal length 78mm, evaluative metering

Lee caught a star fish, and also a small fish with her bare hands.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/250sec, ISO 200, focal length 168mm, evaluative metering

The sunset on Saturday.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/80sec, ISO 800, focal length 29mm, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/80sec, ISO 800, focal length 30mm, evaluative metering

I got up early on Sunday to take picture of the sunrise.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/100sec, ISO 3200, focal length 32mm, evaluative metering

The damaged done by Hurricane Irene but this didn’t stop people from fishing there.  The pier opens around the clock for visitors and anglers. I wish I had gone  there to get some night shots with Bo on Saturday night but was too sleepy when he left.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/320sec, ISO 1600, focal length 98mm, evaluative metering

Sunrise at 6:48 am.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/4000sec, ISO 1600, focal length 70mm, cropped, spot metering

By 6:49 am.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/4000sec, ISO 1600, focal length 200mm, cropped, spot metering

The waves were strong on Sunday, and I got hit hard several times.  I had a bad sand-scrapes on my cheek and shoulder while the waves flipped me several times into shore.  Some were afraid to go into the water, we also saw dolphins that afternoon.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/22, 1/50sec, ISO 100, focal length 78mm, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/22, 1/50sec, ISO 100, focal length 70mm, cropped, evaluative metering

Even this seagull was afraid to get its feet wet.

Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/22 1/60sec, ISO 100, focal length 200mm, cropped, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/8, 1/640sec, ISO 100, focal length 75mm, evaluative metering

There was a DJ that played music on both days we were there and people dancing having a good time at the beach. He played until 11 Pm (23:00) both nights and we could hear it real loud from our tent.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/22, 1/50sec, ISO 100, focal length 22mm, evaluative metering

Lee and Bo went out for Pizza on Sunday and Bo took this image with his iPhone.

Photo taken by Bo's iPhone

Not an ideal campfire for roasting marshmallows but it works.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/40sec, ISO 3200, focal length 19mm, evaluative metering

We brought too many items with us this time and didn’t get to use all of it. I hope we will be more prepared on own next camping trip, which means packing less also. It started to drizzle on Monday morning so our packing went real fast.  We stopped by this place on our way home, probably less than 5 miles from the beach.

Canon T2i, EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/1250sec, ISO 200, focal length 22mm, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/7.1, 1/800sec, ISO 200, focal length 200mm, closeup cropped, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens, Manual, f/7.1, 1/40sec, ISO 200, focal length 200mm, evaluative metering

12 thoughts on “Labor Day Weekend at Emerald Isle”

  1. The campground looks so crowed and so many people at the beach. Looks like everyone in your family enjoying the time there. Love those sunrise pictures.

    1. Hi seeharhed, I think this one is not so bad since it’s a lot smaller in comparison to some of the bigger campground. I’ve heard that there is one that’s a lot nicer than this one for tent camping, I might try to go there on our next trip. If we get a small camper, we can still pitch our tent next to it.

      You have to get up early for the sunrise pictures. 😉

    1. Dallas, we have many great campsites in our area, the beach is a little further and the mountain closer to home. We love the beach but staying at hotel is so expensive and not worth it imo. I didn’t take as many picture this time, and glad that some came out nice. 🙂

    1. salalao, I think my dad was expecting some trees and shades, I think camping at the creek or State park might be more fun for him. I’m not a fan of snake either, but more fearful of bears and tigers. 🙂

    1. lady0fdarkness, I bet it’s not as pretty as Florida. I visited the State several times and have never gone to the beach there.

    1. Cambree, this is one of the best vacations that we took and I get to be the head chef this time, as you can see no picture of the foods. 🙂

      The sunrise looks so much more beautiful at the beach and it was good timing when I got there. We need to do more vacation like this, spending less money and more time doing things together. 🙂

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