Thanks for booking with Vacation Country Rentals Hopefully this will answer most of your questions. If not feel free to call us with any additional questions, Brenda 281-468-4503 or Mark 713-826-6959
Maximum occupancy of homes: Lakeside 22, Pat’s Place 14, Awesome View 7, Henry’s Hideaway 10, The Gregory 7, Creekside 6
Will I get information when I book: Yes, immediately after the payment goes through you will receive an electronic brochure with are information, more home information and links to various sites. If you have questions ask us, we’re here to help and we like our job!! If you book further out approx 30 days out from your arrival you will get an email telling you we will be processing your second payment in a couple of days. 7 Days out you will get a key code with links for directions etc. The day before you will get an email with a map link directly to the home. If you use these it may eliminate unnecessary side trips down country dirt roads that can be bad, especially after a rain. The morning of your arrival at (9:00 a.m. give or take a few minutes, you will get a text (if you used a cell number in the booking) It will provide that all important map link that is now easily forwardable to everyone on your party. Again, Just ask if you need us.
Grills: All of our homes have a grill. Gas grills are at Awesome View, Lakeside & Pat’s Place. They are all hooked up to the main propane tank. Please be sure to shut main valve off when you are done cooking. Charcoal grills are at The Gregory, Henry’s Hideaway and Creekside. Please provide your own charcoal and lighter fluid.
Each home comes with one complimentary stack of firewood. Additional stacks can be purchased for $10.00 each Please try and order in advance if possible. Before burning check for burn bans. A link is on the e-mail.
Trash: Please make sure your trash is secured or put in the dumpster in the evening. We have a large population of raccoons that love our trash. The dumpster is located on O’Connell Trail across from one of the covered R.V. spots Please ask us if you can’t find it.
I see stumps, can we swim? Most times swimming is exceptional. Yes, there are some stumps (that don’t affect swimming). We find these ideal for keeping the noise of boats and jet skis away from the area. It’s only a few minute ride to the main part of the lake where skiing and tubing is easily done. The views of the lake are superb. The deep, main part of the lake is usually cooler and great for swimming and boating. The shallower end and coves may get warmer when rain is scarce and temperatures rise.
Swimming is great off the docks. We offer the use of complementary kayaks for all our homes with the exception of Creekside. You can see photos of the kayaks and kayak houses online under each property description. We recommend bringing your own properly fitting life jackets. We do provide basic orange life jackets and there locations are listed in the home. If you need a lifejacket or see one that is torn or has a problem, let us know. We keep extras. Our contact info is in the homes.
Can my kids kayak: You will see this quite often and there’s a reason. There have been a few times when inattentive parents simply don’t use common sense. A storm may be brewing, the skies are getting dark, the wind is coming up and parents don’t call their kids in. While this is rare, we have seen it happen and I’ve had to run down and call the kids back in while Mom and Dad don’t even look up from their card game. It’s as simple as checking the weather, looking at the sky, keeping the kids close or better yet, being with them. I realize this may frighten folks and I don’t want to do that (though I’m sure I did) I simply don’t want to see anyone hurt unnecessarily.
Is the lake low?
During periods of extreme drought the lake can have lowered water levels. Being a spring fed lake it stays close to normal most of the time. The deep, main part of the lake is always cool and great for swimming and boating. The shallower end and coves may get warmer when rain is scarce and temperatures rise.
The Pier/dock for The Gregory & Henry’s Hideaway: These 2 homes are not on the water but do have water access with a shared dock. There is a set of stairs across from Henry’s Hideaway (about 66, yes that is a lot but we have benches for resting if needed) Where else can you go to have fun and get exercise at the same time!
Each home has a 20’x14’ dock area to fish, tie boats, swim or just relax on. These 2 docks are marked with the homes names. The homes do share a fish cleaning station for those that wish to catch dinner.
Where can I launch my boat? There are 2 launches on the lake. Just down the road is a small Marina that has a launch for a small fee. You can also launch at the dam on SH229. It is a free launch with concrete ramps.
There is no gas on the lake and the closest gas in in town 11 miles away. We do have gas cans you are welcome to borrow. Just ask any member of our staff for assistance.
Is there additional parking: Sometimes almost everyone drives alone or people bring boat trailers and don’t want to try strategically parking them at thee homes. Well, you’re in luck, we have room for extra cars and trailers. Let us know beforehand or talk to one of our staff and we can tell you where to park. We’re here to help make things run smoothly. Just ask.
Getting my boat to the properties from the Marina: If you turn left after unloading at the Marina and follow the shoreline, staying close to the boathouses you should be fine. The launch may require a map or a GPS program. We have a map in the house. These maps are real hard to get and have to be bought in bulk. Please don’t lose it. If you would like to purchase one we have a few extras for $12.50
Do I need a fishing license: While we seldom see a game warden at our end of the lake, the State of Texas requires a fishing license for people over the age of 16 (17th birthday requires a license). You can purchase fishing licenses online or at many stores. Check the Texas Parks and Wildlife web site for all the details. It is our belief cane pole fishing from the dock is also exempt from licensing.
Where can I buy bait: At the Marina or Pops Bait house when open. Both are within walking distance.
Can we rent a boat anywhere? There are no local boat rental facilities. We have had some guests rent boats or jet skis from Dallas and “maybe” Houston
Can I buy alcohol locally? Beer and wine is sold in Crockett and Houston County. Liquor is available in most neighboring counties, about a 45 minute drive each way.
What stores are nearby? Our furthest home is under 12 miles from most stores in Crockett. It is a beautiful country drive to town. There are many small antiques stores, one of a kind restaurants and specialty shops. Wal-Mart, H.E.B., Brookshire Brothers for grocery shopping. Tractor supply, auto parts, and numerous Dollar type stores. There is a restaurant and store list in each homes information binder.
How are the bugs? We are in the woods and on occasion we get different bugs. I must honestly say I am rarely bit by mosquitoes or anything else. It is wise to bring repellant just in case. The last couple of years we have been “occasionally” getting these annoying, yet harmless bugs that look like mosquitoes but aren’t. They don’t sting or bite but they are attracted to light. We still sit outside at night but have learned to keep bright porch lights off, close blinds and turn off unneeded interior lights. The biggest thing “keep the doors shut!!!! I had to get your attention. 🙂 If you follow these steps they aren’t a problem, or at least haven’t been for most of our guests. Keep in mind, we do treat for them and many times they are non existent.
Do I need Towels, pots & pans etc.? Each home comes with mini (hotel type) soap bars. We do not provide shampoo or conditioner. We provide 2 rolls of toilet paper per bathroom and 1 roll of paper towels per home, some trash bags and some napkins. (please plan accordingly) We have a decent amount of pots, pans, dishes and utensils in each home. This includes some cookie sheets, casserole dish etc. If you need something specific, contact us and we’ll do our best to accommodate. Bath towels and linens are provided. Please bring your beach towels for swimming.
Lighting:Most of our homes have a wide variety of outside lights. We encourage people to enjoy them but we do appreciate lights being shut during daylight or sleeping times. Please respect the environment as well as our efforts to keep pricing as affordable as we can.
Stairs: Most of our homes/docks are on the side of a fairly steep hill and lake access includes a lot of stairs. It is not recommended for elderly persons or unsupervised children
WiFi: all of our homes have wireless Internet. The code is located in the info binder in each home. On occasion the internet does go out. If it isn’t because of a power outage try to unplug the modem from the power source for 2 minutes and plug it back in. This usually resets it.
How is the Cable T.V.: I refer our cable T.V. as country cable. While it’s not bad, it’s not what you get in the cities. None of the stations are H.D. but “most times” the picture is pretty good. We have limited stations and they vary from month to month so keeping a guide is next to impossible. I often get frustrated with paying for it but when we had it installed the owner of the company rolled up with his son and a dozen donuts. How can we not support that! 🙂
Cell coverage and wifi: As far as cell service, Verizon great! ATT: so so and most others not at all. We do have wifi that can be used for wifi/cell calls. Our DSL, (and I use that term loosely) is suitable for streaming Neflix, (which we have) and basic functions such as checking emails. The bigger homes with lots of people can be slower but most people find after the kids initial grumping they get out and enjoy the lake forgetting about the phones and social media.
In an effort to to increase connectivity we invested (rather heavily) into Verizon jet packs in an effort to speed things up. The verdict is still out there. Sometimes people rave about the internet other times not so much. It appears unlimited and unthrottled has been replaced with the word “Optimized” which we learned is another word for throttled. The bright side of optimized verse throttled is they only optimize/throttle us when the towers are busy, which “most” times they aren’t. The verdict is still out there on their worth. We’d appreciate your feedback.