Monday, March 7, 2011

~~ Camping ~~

This past weekend was absolutely gorgeous, windy and a little cool, but no clouds and lots of sunshine gorgeous! We were up early Saturday morning and excited about the camping trip that was planned with Jesse's Cub Scout pack. After all our bags were packed and the car was loaded up we headed west toward Enchanted Rock!

Once we were there, it became clear, pretty quickly, that there was a lack of communication and information. We paid ahead of time, but needed to pay again when we arrrived, something about the type of pass our pack bought. Initially we were told no lunch would be served by our pack, so we stopped for lunch on our way there. No big deal. But then, biggest miscommunication was a big deal. This campout was not going to be like the one last fall because it was primitive! That's right, I said primitive. No parking at the campsite and unloading all your goodies, too windy for a campfire, and a good 1.5 miles between the campsite and the pavilion where lunch/dinner/breakfast would be served.

Phillip and the boys getting ready for the hike.

Getting ready to start hiking to the campsite! We found out we would have to haul all of our stuff 2 miles to our primitive campsite. Remember where we are? It was mostly uphill and we had a lot of stuff-tent, sleeping bags, overnight bags, etc. I was NOT a happy camper!

The dads-Phillip and Brett-hauling gear to the campsite.

The back of Enchanted Rock (almost there).

Finally got there and got the tent set up. It was pretty darn windy, but it stayed up!

Hiking between the rocks (2 pics ago), and looking back at our campsite, on our way to eat dinner.

Jesse and Hank

After dinner we hiked back to our campsite. The sun was going down quick. Despite all the frustration with the arrangements the park was beautiful!

I was usually bringing up the rear, mostly because I was busy taking pictures.

Figured I better get one of myself-hehe. By this time we had probably walked about 12 miles and I was still able to put on a happy face!

The backside of the rock at sunset. We made it back to our campsite with about 10 minutes of daylight left. It was dark! No campfire meant no smores and no storytelling, so we were all in bed by 7:30. Not too early considering we were exhausted from all the hiking!

Waking up after a cold, 27 degree, night of primitive camping! At least the boys were able to earn their polar bear patch because the temp. went below freezing. After the last camping trip, which seemed so much colder, we were prepared with sleeping bags and layers of clothes!

We got up early, packed up everything and started our 2 mile hike with all of our gear to the pavilion for breakfast. It was early, but it warmed up quickly so Michael helped me out by wearing my sweatshirt down the hill.

Um, yeah, not smiling like I was the night before. This is my "I am SO over this" picture. See all those black straps around my neck? That would be all the junk I carried down.

Still, it was a beautiful morning and the scenery was amazing!

After breakfast prayer and meeting with the whole pack. Then it was time to hit the road home. We were so sore and tired and dirty, but overall it really was a great experience!

On the way home we stopped outside of Burnet to see the bald eagles. I wish I had taken my other camera with the zoom lens, maybe I could have gotten a better picture. Oh well. The nest was huge and one bird was in the nest.

You absolutely can not see the 2 bald eagles sitting to the left of the nest in this picture because it is so small, but they were there I promise.

It was a great experience and we have a great story to tell because of all the ups and downs (get it?) that we encountered this weekend. I am super excited the boys were able to earn a patch-camping in temps below freezing is a big deal! It was our first family camping trip and we had an awesome adventure getting to know our friends better!