Thursday, May 10, 2007

Caprock Canyons

Well, we're off to try a new state park and campground this weekend, Caprock Canyons State Park, in beautiful Quitequa, Texas. (Pronounced "kitty-kway" by the locals, but I'm guessing that ain't how the Injun's used to say it.) We leave bright and early tomorrow morning. It's nearly a 4-hour drive, but I always beat those mapquest estimates by quite a bit. Anyway, the weather looked more favorable in that part of the state (lows in the 50's, highs just above 80), and I've never been to this area. Texas really is huge and has many different geological features. I'm told one of the hiking trails has a natural bridge, sandstone I presume. The main trail is wide and flat. It used to be a railroad track. The rails are gone, and the trail is open for walking and biking. I read that one section is actually a tunnel that goes through a mountain. Also a small lake with swimming. And real restrooms with showers, since we don't want to go totally primitve with the kids so young.

Camping does involve some work, but we're well organized. Our tub o' gear sits in the garage, stocked and ready to go at a moment's notice. We've gotten pretty quick at setting up and folding away our tent. We know what foods to buy and prepare with very little effort. And we suspend the healthy eating rules and indulge in snacks a'plenty, because you burn extra calories outdoors, that is a scientifically proven fact! That is Bubba's favorite. We have Little Debbie zebra cakes, woohoo! And there is NOTHING better than a steak cooked over a real wood fire. (Hot dogs for the kids, but they are the yummy Wrangler dogs, not the 50-cent WalMart dogs). Plus, once you own the gear, it's dirt cheap entertainment for a family of five.

All the boys just love it. They seem to enjoy the "work" - helping me pack and set up camp, gathering kindling. I've been told that for kids, love is a four-letter word spelled T-I-M-E. So that's what it's all about. Just being together. And celebrating MamaLlama, this is one of her Mothers Day gifts.

We just went camping two weeks ago, but we want to get in as much as we can while the weather is nice. Also, that last trip was with a large group. It was a group that we love, friends from church, but we really go camping to get away from it all, not to bring it all with us, you know? This one will be much lazier and all at our own speed and agenda. We'll do as much or as little as we feel inspired to, and not worry about keeping up with group activities.

So, pray for good weather. But even if it rains, a bad day camping beats a good day working!


4andcounting said...

I'm dumb and didn't read this post first, so I'm continuing to comment on camping. We just bought most of our gear tonight--talk about sticker shock! But, we know it is a one-time deal and over time it will be cheap entertainment. I think I'll be emailing MamaLlama about food tips. Again, it has been so long since we went camping that I feel like a novice all over again.
Oh yeah, state park camping is the way to go too--I require facilities.

Anonymous said...

Man, we have got to get out and DO SOMETHING! I havent camped since I was a little girl, and Dan has never gone camping! We dont really know what we like doing, aside from hanging out at Barnes and Nobel and visiting the Butterfly and birding centers down here. We like making day trips to the beach too, especially now that Bernadette gets a big thrill out of it. I'm thinking we should just give camping a try (a few times). Email me with some pointers. I'm guessing the summer is not the best time to pitch a tent?

Daddio said...

We got a great deal on our new tent at Dick's Sporting Goods. It's about 10x20', and tall enough for me to stand up straight inside. Comparable tents at Cabela's or Bass Pro were in the $300 range, we paid $85. WalMart has a lot of selection too. Get the biggest tent you can find with those young'uns!