Saturday, July 25, 2015

A camping we will go!

Well, not Ellen and me, but Paul, Jenny and Max. We went along for the afternoon and evening and then came back to the house to sleep.

You see, last summer, Paul bought a used fold-up camper trailor, and he has put in scores of hours refurbishing it.  I think he is ambivalent about whether it was a good idea. He's put a lot of time and money into it and it's still an old camper trailor with some problems. But it's cute and it works (and a new one would cost 3 or 4 times as much) and he decided today that he would do some finishing touches and go on a short camping expedition to try it out.  It's been sitting in the garage for ages waiting for a chance to show its stuff. 

                                       Here's the camper in the garage

So everybody got to work. The old foam mattresses had to be covered with new foam and fresh batting and we learned the miracle of spray adhesive which made quick work of that. Paul had to do some last minute repairs and hook up the trailer tail-lights (only the one on the right side worked. Wouldn't you know!) I helped him fold up the camper and then I sat on the "roof" to hold it down tight while he screwed in the last brackets. Jenny packed the camping equipment and food and we were off! Ellen and I followed in our car. 

We took what is normally a " back road" - it's unpaved - the Gray's River Road. But there were a lot of people on it today doing what we were doing. The dust roiled up by trucks was terrible. The road was badly washboarded. The road goes into National Forest where you can pull off into a rustic, unimproved campsite with no facilities, free of charge. It was Saturday afternoon, about 3p.m., and everybody had gotten there ahead of us. We passed at least 10 full campsites. We pulled onto Little Gray's River Road and went a distance on that. Same thing. Finally Paul found a spot. It was right by the River. A fisherman was parked there but he wasn't camping. He eventually left. We opened up the camper, got it set up and leveled with jacks, set up chairs, a table, stove, got out the cooler, and settled into a good time. The air was sweet with the scent of willows. The scenery was gorgeous. It was sunny but cool. What more could we ask? Paul did some fishing and gave Max a lesson with the fly rod. Max did well. We sat and talked. I collected wood for a fire. We had chips and hummus, and then a lovely stir fry Jenny prepared on the Coleman stove. No one remembered to bring bug spray, but the mosquitoes weren't too bad. It was really nice. We came back at about 8:30 and left PJ&M to spend the night in the camper - the inaugeral event. We 'll hear all about it tomorrow. I just had a nice hot shower and boy did that feel good! 

                                     The camper set up at the camp site

         Paul trying out his fly rod (he caught a small trout but put it back)

                  Giving Max a chance with the fly rod

                           Jenny and Ellen by the stream

                        Max helping with the fire

                     A happy camping family

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