Camping in November: November 14, 2015

Beautiful Day. Great Food. Long Hike!
(click for today's pictures)
I guess that we finished the blog around 11 or a bit later last night.  Everyone else had already gone to sleep but wild card Whitman had not.  He was still happily watching Thomas the Train and when he watches tv, he doesn’t blink his eyes at all.  I believe that he could have stayed up all night long watching his movies.

We finally took it away from him and he just plopped himself right out of the pack n play.  That was about the last straw so Robby grabbed him up and laid Whitman right beside him.  And soon he was sound asleep-Robby held him for a minute or two while he grunted and struggled to get up but then he was out like a light.

Robby was on the edge and then Whitman, Graham, Campbell, me, Keaton and finally Reagan on the other end of the tent.  That left Anderson at our feet which was a pretty good spot for him since he had the end of everyone’s blankets.  We all slept as well as you can when you are crammed in a tent in 38 degree weather.

Seriously, I think that we all slept well and whenever I woke up and re-covered everyone, they all felt warm and the heaters worked perfectly.  (Just a few minutes ago while we were getting ready for bed, we became so hot that Robby had to turn them off for just a few minutes.)

Caw, caw, caw was the first things that we heard this morning.  Some incredibly loud birds woke us all up.  It was like they were talking to each other and then the next thing I knew they were cawing at us like they were right outside our tent.  It was just 6:30!  I had never heard anything like it but I bet I will in the morning too!

The kids laid around pretty well and it was probably 8:30 before we finally let the kids out of the tent.  They played kindles, we reorganized and then we all changed.  Robby ventured out first and soon he had the fire started.

Breakfast was then cooked next-Tony and Shannon are pretty handy since they are doing most of the cooking.  We had a light breakfast of pancakes, biscuits, hashbrowns, eggs, bacon and sausage along with chocolate milk and orange juice.  The kids (and adults) were in heaven.  We ate and ate and then after clean up it was after 11-time for lunch (we did skip lunch since we were still stuffed from breakfast)

The kids rode their bikes some and we made targets for them to shoot their bows and arrows at and they spent quite a bit of time playing with the footballs as well.  After breakfast clean up, we loaded up and went to the Mather Lodge.  We didn’t go in but did walk to the back for a picture of the view.  This place is hopping-we lucked into a parking spot there and just about every single campsite is filled up (and no, we are not the only ones tent camping-many folks are.)

After our pictures, we decided to explore the Seven Hollows trail.  It was just 4.5 miles-actually we thought that we would do a bit and then turn around but after doing some, why turn around.  It was a bit more intense than we had originally thought-climbing up sides of rocks, crossing streams and going up and down the sides of the mountain.  The big kids and Tony would stop and wait for us at every half mile marker, Shannon walked with Campbell who wasn’t as fast as them but wasn’t as slow as us.  Poor Keaton did great but by the last mile, she was exhausted.  She pretty much had to have someone hold her hand (and pull her) the entire way. She did have to be held the last little bit of the walk.  Now Whitman walked some (maybe a quarter of a mile) and then had to be held the rest of the way (or we would have still been on the trail).  After riding on Robby’s shoulders for a long time, he started to doze off-he would bump his chin on Robby’s head and then he would sway from side to side.  Finally Robby pulled him down and we carried him while he was sound asleep for at least 2 miles.

The trail was very well marked or I probably would have panicked on it.  We saw lots of people on it at first but then none on the trail at all on the last 2 or so miles.  I do believe that I have never been so happy to see our car!  The trail was absolutely beautiful and we could have spent forever exploring all of the neat things that we saw on the way.  It is definitely a great trail if you have enough time.

Back at the campsite, it was time for 2 things-supper and finding the game.  Supper was again delicious-shish kabobs and fried rice.  This supper was a bit more involved but seemed to be ready in no time.  Robby concentrated on dessert-apple cobbler in my new dutch oven (not really new, since it was from Christmas).  Let me tell you that it was wonderful and cooked perfectly.  (His biscuits that he made in it this morning were great as well.)
Robby also made some ice cream and we enjoyed our cobbler and homemade ice cream while watching the hogs play.  We had cookie dough to make too along with more s’mores but we figured we had eaten enough since we were constantly snacking on cookies, trail mix, candy corn and nuts and rice krispy treats along with dessert.

The game was fun to watch but I am sure that the neighbors hate us!  Ha!  Tony’s satellite couldn’t get a signal but Robby was able to use his phone to get internet and then play it through his computer hooked up to the tv (technology will always amaze me.)

Despite having 3 knocked down trees in our front yard and despite hauling what seemed like a crazy amount of wood up here, we were still running out of wood since we needed to save some for in the morning so the fire wasn’t huge but the game kept us interested and before we knew it, the game was over and we were all climbing into the tent.

The kids are still playing on their kindles so hopefully tonight will go as smooth as last night…..

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