Setting the Stage
When we decided to join the ranks of full time RV’ers. It forced certain changes in our life. Giving up my beloved Jeep Gladiator, weekly brunches with friends and ready access to family to name a few. One of the of the biggest changes was selling our little boat. I’ve always loved the water and we used our little runabout multiple days of the week. We had a “boat family” and loved Wednesday evening charcuterie with friends parked in a nice cove.
So when Scott & Gayle, the wonderful owners of Blue Heron Escape RV Resort, asked us if we wanted to take a Friday afternoon cruise we were all in.
When Scott inquired as to our interest, Cathy was actually working at Lu Lu’s which sits on the Canal. A quick text confirmation later and we were in. Scott and Gayle picked me up at the resort and we headed to the water. The Canal is part of the Inter-coastal Waterway. We used a new launch and there were dolphins swimming around the ramps.
After some battery trouble, boat owners y’all understand, we headed to Lu Lu’s and snatched Cathy off the restaurant’s dock. As we cruised down the canal Cathy looked at me and said. “This makes me miss our boat.” Which perfectly echoed the musing in my head.
We pulled away from Lu Lu’s at about 4:15 pm CST at a leisurely cruising speed. The large 4 stroke outboard was amazingly quiet. The temperature was 78 degrees and the sky was full of fluffy clouds. There was a nice cool breeze that the speed of the boat intensified. The boat was a beautiful pontoon with loungers everywhere. As I lounged in the front left with a cooling breeze in my face and warm sunlight warming my whole being. The world was truly perfect for a while.
Scott and Gayle had been telling me for while about a little dive called Pirates Cove that was easier to get to by water. They claimed that they served the best Bushwackers around. For those of you not yet familiar with the area. Bushwackers are a big deal here. They are a legendary drink best described as an adult milkshake. Various establishments from Mobile to Pensacola claim to have invented the drink.
To this point Flora-Bama owned the Bushwackers of choice for me. I will caution you that like anything else. All Bushwackers are not created equal. If you try one at the wrong place you might never try one again.
Pirates Cove is considered one of the two or three landmarks in this area. Maybe infamous is the correct word. It’s not really that bad of a drive to reach. It sits on the north side of the bay. But it is definitely more fun to go by boat. Along with a large dock, Pirates Cove boasts sandy beaches where many beach there watercraft. There’s indoor and outdoor bars. Deck seating and picnic tables in the sand by the water.
The food, which we did not partake in on this trip, is basic bar food. The word on the street is the hamburgers are some of the best around. All the food that I saw looked delicious. Our trip was all about the quest for the perfect Bushwackers and Pirates Cove did not disappoint. Pro tip. Stir your Bushwackers well at the Cove. I think they put the rum in first. Also if you are in town for a while they have a large green cup that is larger and you get refills at the price of the smaller portion.
Cathy and I both agreed that to date this is the best Bushwackers we have sampled. We ordered more just to be certain. They were so creamy with no hint of ice. You really have to be careful with these, especially on a hot day. The joy of drinking a milkshake can encourage you to order another and another and these are actually pretty strong drinks.
Pirates Cove is also extremely pet friendly. This is doubly important as Alabama has some very strict laws about pets in establishments that serve food. You will find that animals are not allowed in most places in the area. Out on the deck and beach dogs were everywhere. Including the three that were on our boat.
If you are in the area, be sure to include Pirates Cove on your list of places to grab lunch and a few drinks. Just remember the suggested attire is bare feet and bathing suits.
We left the cove a little after 6pm and cruised over to Barber Marina. Mr. Barber is sort of a local legend and a predominant land owner. He has populated his marina and surrounding land with large statues. We have not hiked the trails with life size dinosaurs yet, but it is a local attraction you should check out. The marina contains The Lady of the Lake. She has recently been reestablished after a storm dislodged her. This was pretty interesting and makes me want to go hike the trails for some good camera fodder.
As we were leaving the marina we spotted Scott’s brothers dolphin cruise boats. We tried to rubber neck on their tour but we didn’t see any dolphins as they were wrapping up the trip.
We pointed the boat back toward Lu Lu’s and the setting sun. The air grew more chill as the sun sank beneath the tree line. It was one of the best adventures of our stay here and we cannot thank our hosts enough.
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