Camping days of spring

Last week we took three days of our time at home to do a little camping. We had a great time at Blackwater River State Park. As much fun as the camping was, the preparation was fun too.

We were wanting to do some canoing on this trip, but did not want to pay the price of a canoe rental. I have a friend with a kayak who said I could borrow it at any time. I took him up on it and picked it up a couple of days before heading out. At church on Sunday I asked another friend who I thought had a kayak if I could borrow his. He no longer has it, but recommended another friend who had a canoe. I called the canoe friend to find out that his canoe is in disrepair. He gave me a name of another friend that might have one I could borrow.

We checked around and did not find another canoe, but the man with the busted canoe said he had a couple of kayaks I could have if I wanted them. Not just have for the trip, but have as in “take out of my back yard and don’t return with them.” Though they are not in great shape, I think I can do something with them.

The morning we were planning to leave I called another friend to borrow a couple extra life jackets. I knew he would have them. Doug has everything. He offered the use of his canoe too. Great! For a family with small kids, canoes work out better than kayaks. So we ended up with one good canoe and one good kayak for the trip.

After Dad and I got the boats to the house along with all the needed equipment we had to figure out how to get them both strapped to the top of the van. In the process we forgot to transfer the life jackets from his truck to my van. That caused a frustrated hour and a half trip to town to buy some life jackets. Took time out of our play time to do that. But we ended up good and tired by the time the afternoon was over. We probably would not have played much more in the water.

Monday we got camp set up and grilled hamburgers. That night was a great night for looking at the stars, but the trees were too tall around the camp ground area. All we could see were stars right above us. We had not explored the area well before it got dark on Monday. We did not know that there was a large parking area just a couple hundred yards from the campsite that we could have easily seen the stars from. Then, of course, the next night it was cloudy and we could not see any stars.

Tuesday we at a sausage casserole cooked in the dutch oven. A man named Bob Sharp in Utah bought me that oven as a gift about 12 years ago. We have had some good meals out of it. Lunch was sandwiches as we prepared to go to the river. For supper we had some great steak and a cake baked in the dutch oven. I am out of practice on baking in the dutch oven. I burned the cake a bit. But it was still edible.

Tuesday morning I also went running. I found a nice 2 mile section on the Juniper Creek Trail to do an out and back course giving me 4 miles. A wrong turn here and there and I ended up running almost 5 miles. I got to get up close and personal with an indigo snake too. It was about 5 feet long. They can get up to 8.5 feet in length.

Wednesday we had pancakes and went hiking. Lunch was sandwiches eaten while lounging in the hammock I made last week.

We had a great time. It was fun to turn off the electronic world for a couple of days.

Pictures to follow when I finally pull them off the camera.

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