This past weekend was our bi-annual group camping trip. We try to go every spring and fall, and we rotate through some gorgeous places each time. This year we went to Round Spring Campground, located on the Current River, near Eminence, MO.
The weather was just perfect, sunny and warm (almost hot) during the days, and cool and comfortable in the mornings and evenings. Not too cold at night, just cool enough to feel comfortable in a tent.
Speaking of tents – we just purchased a new one during REI’s annual sale, and with a generous gift card from my sister and family. Our former tent was getting a little tight for the family, and had been worked hard on all those family and school camping trips. M agonized a bit on the final choice – looking for something large enough to accommodate four people (most of them TALL people), plus space for gear and friends as the girls get older. He bit the bullet and bought the big guy, and everyone teased us for our mini-mansion at the campsite. Let me tell you – it was the perfect size. And we still might add on the “garage” piece to the front of the tent at some point.
Most of our trips involve hiking and beach relaxing, and we always have a few kayaks to tool around in. This year we decided to go on a float trip, and we rented canoes and kayaks for the whole crew. (That’s all of us, photo taken by the guy with the school bus and boats that picked us up.) We drove up to Pulltite and got in the water there, and then floated back down to our campsite – just under ten miles according to the map.
I didn’t take my nice camera (or phone) on the river, so I don’t have any photos of that portion of our trip, but a friend snapped this photo of M, F, and I in our canoe from a distance. E took a friend, and together they manned a two-person canoe for the entire trip. No small feat for their first time. E got the hang of it quickly, and they only got stuck in a tree once!
There was a lot of river swimming and playing with rocks. And a lot of screaming when this giant water mocassin was spotted in the river full of children. I think we freaked him out, and he moved along to another spot.
The kids played a lot of kickball, spud, and ghost in the graveyard, and the parents did lot of standing around, talking, drinking, laughing, cooking… The parents did take on the kids in an epic kickball event that was a lot of fun.
We always divvy up the meal planning and execution, and Saturday night’s Indian feast has become a staple. I wish I had photographed Saturday and Sunday morning’s spread – just fantastic. Sunday morning the mamas did nothing, while the men made Mountain Man for breakfast and served us hot coffee, mimosas, and Kakao chocolate while we waited.
We moved slowly on Sunday, packing up, hiking to Round Spring, setting up lunch at a nearby beach for a few more hours, before finally heading home mid-afternoon. A really nice way to celebrate Mother’s Day and rewind a bit from all the work and stress of late.
Dinner at Dewey’s (while the seasonal Tito Santana is around), long, long showers for everyone, and a busy washing machine before the sleepy Monday start again.