Wednesday, July 18, 2012

A campin' we will go!

Last Sunday we all headed out to Hanging Rock State park for a family adventure.  Both Daddy and I camped when we were younger, but it was our first time camping as parent, and the boys first time period. We planned on a venture within an hour or hour and a half away, just in case things went horribly (well, hopefully not horribly) but in case we forgot something crucial, or the boys just really didn't like it (pretty much knew that wasn't going to be the case!) 

Little Brant has decided he's going to start Scouts this fall, so he was super excited to get out and see Daddy put his former Scout skills to use.  I had fun remembering and finding campfire cooking and going through all the cook camp cookware from my childhood days. We were ALL looking forward to having some family time, minus the distractions of technology, playing games, roasting marshmallows and snuggling in the tent. 

Enjoying the outdoors while we got the campsite set up.  He LOVED it outdoors, under the trees. He just looked and looked and looked around.

Getting the footprint out

Enjoying the campfire, before the weenie roast. 

Home for a few days

The only addition that we will be making to our setup next time, are the screen sides that go with the  pop-up tent!

After getting settled in, and fed, it was getting dark. So Little B and I took our first jaunt to the bath house.  Not too far of a walk, but still not yelling distance, it was crucial to make sure you had all your gear together...especially towels and undies! lol!  But we came back clean and Daddy took his turn.  Dark now, it was time to turn in.

Once we got settled in the tent, we all fell asleep.  But then I heard a noise.  And I remembered the Bear warning on the camp entrance sign.  And I stared at the blackness of the tent ceiling for a while, craning to hear noises.  But silly Mommy was a worry wart, as the next day dawned bright, sunny and no traces of bears.

Daddy made an awesome camp breakfast, eggs, bacon, and toast. A quick wash-up at the sinks and we were off to hike for the day.

Henry hanging out in his backpack

 We headed out, with waterfalls as the destination. Hanging Rock is great because there is such a variety in levels of trails, and length.  We had several kid leg friendly hikes (as well as Daddy leg friendly, as he was carrying Henry!)

The view of the first waterfall, from the observation deck, the Upper Cascades

Looking down the cascades

My boys!

Brant hopped across the pool for a better view.  Notice the Marine cover, binocular and hiking stick...not to mention the CamelBak! 

Well, of course, if you hike DOWN to falls, the way back is UP!

He was taking a break

Henry absolutely loved his backpack! He had a great view and a comfy ride

About this time Henry was getting hungry, so we headed down to the next fall, Hidden falls, for Brant to play in the pools and for Henry to have a picnic!

Is it cold?

When Daddy and I were dating, we hiked down to Hidden Falls one day, when he came to visit me in college.  He took a photo of me on this same rock!

On our way back up from the falls, we walked up on this deer, just hanging out.  Not skittish at all!

We headed back to the campsite, to relax and cool off  It was a bit warm after hiking!

And after the boys got back from their showers, we saw another deer!

Cooking dinner on the campfire

See? Henry LOVED the trees!!
Well, this was the last photo of the trip, as that night there was a rip roaring thunderstorm.  We battened down the hatches, well, the rain fly, and waited it out. It was so noisy that it woke Henry up and kind of freaked Brant out.  We read stories and said a prayer to keep up safe. The storm sort of sat over us for about an hour, but then, it moved on. The air was cool and refreshed, and we all snuggled into bed, with a sleeping bag over us. 

A little damp, we broke camp the next morning, to head home.  We had planned on fishing too, but were ready to head back and dry out.  Brant didn't want to leave. And I don't think Henry did either.  But don't worry boys, Mommy and Daddy are already planning our next camping trip!

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