Monday, July 14, 2014

That Time We Went Camping

Brian wasn't needed every day last week at work so last minute we decided, "Hey, why don't we take the kids camping?" There must have been crazy dust on my waffle that morning because that actually sounded like a great idea.  Brian went into work Monday morning just to check in and I made reservations for a DOD campground that I found on the Air Force Academy Recreation website.  That morning was looong and I mean long because the kids were at each others throats for some reason. "Layla yelled at me! Layla poked me!" "Brady took my stroller! Brady is ruining my life!" You know, one of those kind of mornings. 

Brian got home, we packed up the car, and we hit the road. It was a beautiful drive, west on 24 through the mountains. Layla konked out, Brady was content looking out the window and I was thinking to myself,  "Ok. We can do this!" We were about 45 minutes into our hour drive, through the town of Woodland Park and it started POURING.  The lovely thing about Colorado is I swear rain develops out of nowhere. There was no rain in the forecast so we were taken by surprise. We made a stop at Walmart for s'mores supplies (because what camping trip is complete without s'mores?) and finally the rain started to subside.

We drove up the mountain and finally made it to Farish Recreation Area! There was this cute little cabin we stopped at to check in and they gave us a map to our campsite. When I called, the guy had asked if I wanted a campsite by the lake by other people or a little more secluded campsite. I figured since we had the kids, this was our first time camping with all of us, that just in case it didn't go well, the less people near us, probably the better. And we didn't need a child sleep walking into a lake either. No thanks.

We drive through the grounds and man oh man they weren't kidding about being secluded. We literally had to take a long road away from everything else just to get to our campsite, lucky #34.  And the icing on the cake? No cell service. I knew this might be the case but after seeing the WATCH OUT FOR BEARS!! sign near the check-in cabin I was wondering if this was a good idea. I mean we're about 5/10 minutes from anyone else and no cell service?  I was sure if the bears were going to pick any campsite to frequent, it'd be ours. And Layla just oozes the smell of snacks so I figured we were goners.

Brian thought I'd lost my mind, told me we wouldn't be eaten by bears, and began setting up the tent anyway against my wishes.

And then it started pouring rain again.

I figured this may be an omen that this is a bad idea.

The rain finally stopped, Brian finally coaxed me out of the car, and we decided to take a little hike. One of the "tips" for keeping bears away was to talk/sing loudly. Luckily we had the two chatterboxes with.

The views were pretty amazing though! This area hosts a lot of weddings, including the awesome Janelle from The Wild Blue Yonder who got married here a couple months ago!

Oh did I forget to mention that we had Rascal with too? We brought the whole family with.

This was the only picture Layla made it in on the rock because apparently I didn't look at her the right way or something like that because she flung herself on the ground and wailed that I was mean. Apparently teenage behavior begins at 2 in girls.

This kid, totally in his element.

Oh and don't worry, we didn't just bring our kids and the dog, we brought our kid's kids, Baby and Teddy (my children and their wild imaginations). 

I just had to keep taking pictures of this campsite and how there was literally nothing but nature around us.

After the hike it was time to take a little rest, I mean all that packing and unpacking and setting things up really exhausted them.

Never, ever can get a nice picture of them. I mean, really.

Finally it was time for some dinner. My manly husband, he build fire, and we eat hot dogs.

We need ketchup!! And don't worry, that's not a tiny bear in the corner, that's just Rascal. Brian spilled hot dog juice on his pants and I told him no way, no how could he bring those in the tent. Did he not read rule #5 for keeping bears away?  "Keep any clothes with scents of food out of your sleeping area."  Yes, I was being a tad paranoid.

After dinner it was time for another hike.

And then it was the best time of the night...S'MORES!!!

Brady, absolutely mesmerized by the sight of a fire roasted marshmallow.

Layla inhaled yet another bug and Brady was worried he'd be next. Can I just say how many bug bites I came home with too? Not complaining, not being a wuss, just merely commenting.

There must have been crushed caffeine pills in those s'mores because the kids went all kind of crazy after this.  Layla singing "Let It Go" for us.

And Brady was just being straight up weird. It was then that we were thankful we were so far from civilization.  The sugar high didn't last long and was followed by a big 'ol crash and before we knew it we had the kids in bed.

And then it was time for some more marshmallows, more s'mores, and some well deserved camping beers. It was actually kind of nice being tucked away, with no cell service, no distractions, and just spending time together.  Brian and I were talking about the day we'd had when all of a sudden I saw a ton of lightning flashes off in the distance. And then they started getting closer. And closer. We were literally up about 9,500 ft. The tent had finally gone quiet from the giggling and I literally didn't know what we should do. We waited up for awhile watching the storm and luckily the lightning dodged us. But not the rain. Oh man it rained.

But we all made it through the night. And didn't wake up until after 8 am.

Poor dog, so uncomfortable in the tent. Not.

We woke up and it was a chilly, chilly 50 degrees. It had stopped raining when we got up so we quickly packed everything up and headed out.

The rain quickly started up again as we were pulling out of the campground and we literally were in a cloud. And it very rarely rains in the morning, we just got that lucky.

And we were in a cloud for a good 45 minutes which made for a very slow drive home.

But we made it! And we didn't get eaten by bears! And I think we're crazy enough to go try it again sometime. Because some fresh air and no distractions are good for the soul. And camping beers always help too.


Shannon said...

Your captions always crack me up! I have a friend from college who now lives in Colorado and she always shares pictures of bears and moose in her backyard. NO THANK YOU!

But you guys survived so yay!!!!

Jen said...

I love camping and it has been far too long since I have gone.

Janelle Vannice said...

Yay! I'm so glad you guy went to Farish. We camped there frequently while Dan was at USAFA - and the best part for us was getting away from cell service! It's so fun out there not having to worry about anything. :) You guys should go back sometime and check out the lake - they have little boats you can rent (like paddle boats, nothing crazy) that are a lot of fun too! :)

Becky Dougherty said...

You guys always have the best luck on trips.....

Glad you didn't get eaten by bears! :)

Melody T. said...

I LOVE your comment about the teenage years beginning at the age of 2. It is SO TRUE! I have two little girls and I would have never never imagined the drama they can come up with! Looks like a fun camping trip, glad the bears didn't eat you!

The Chick Nest said...

You survived! Such a memory and experience! I love the pic of you in the car - crack me up! I am totally with you. But you were better than me...I need a cabin! Maybe we don't need to try this when I visit! LOL! ;)

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