Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Tent Camping to Colorado!


Okay ya'll, I'm gonna try to catch up from the past several months of  silence. So please bear with me while I backtrack to last July when we sold our boat, moved our belongings into our vacant rental, then grabbed our camping gear and started driving towards Colorado. Our daughter was due to have her second child during the first week of August, so we were happy to accept their request for help with our grandson during this time. With a love for the outdoors, COVID, and the desire to keep our expenses to a minimum we decided tent camping would be a great way to break up the long drive from Louisiana.

We decided to head towards Arkansas for our first night of camping, and we found a campground in Arkadelphia for about $20 bucks a night. Since our camping trip a few months earlier when avoiding the marina during a bad storm, we learned that we needed a bigger tent and an air mattress if we really wanted to start camping more often. We purchased this six person tent, which pops up so easily that I'm able to put it up by myself! We also bought the Coleman camping cot, which was worth every penny. Sleeping on the ground with a brand stuck in your back isn't very fun. We love our new set-up! We were seriously thinking about buying a small camper trailer, but we noticed that a lot of the primitive sites have electrical hook-ups and they're a lot cheaper too! With a comfortable bed and a 12v fan we've decided to save our money. Plus, with COVID, have you seen the prices of camper trailers lately?! We'll wait till the majority of folks realize they're not into camping, and perhaps buy a used camper trailer someday.

Our "room" for the night ...

With this view we didn't feel cramped. We loved waking up to the view of trees and sky .. it was really cool to feel so close to nature.

Notice our lantern and fan hanging from above ... we were comfortable!

The next morning, we packed up our gear to head towards Kansas. With a plan of camping in a different location every night until we hit Colorado, we were really happy with our choice of tent and pop-up mattress. Both were really quick & easy to put up and take down. While Ken drove the truck, I found a great place in Kansas for only $12 a night. We were able to grab a site on the lake. Check out our waterfront view in the first picture of this post. We were startin' to dig camping!

The next evening we arrived at the Golden Eagle campground in Colorado Springs, Colorado. This was the perfect location to settle in for a couple of nights and enjoy some of the nearby sights. We were getting close to our daughter's due date, so we wanted to be nearby without staying at their house. We figured we'd be intruding on their space long enough once our grand-daughter was born! We had another great view .. this time of Cheyenne Mountain. We googled it, thinking it was a tourist center. However, we were surprised to learn that the mountain is an underground combat operations center. There's a lotta top secret stuff going on under that mountain .. really cool! 

The first thing we wanted to do in Colorado Springs was visit Garden of the Gods. Our kids recommended it, and it did not disappoint. After driving for two days, it was nice to walk around and stretch our legs. If you're in the area, we'd recommend this free park that's easy to walk.

Look close and you'll see people on top of both mountains!

Later that day, our daughter thought she was going into labor and thought we should get even closer to her home in Fort Collins. So, we found a KOA actually located in Fort Collins. It wasn't the most scenic, but it was very clean, close to the interstate and just minutes from our daughter's house. We stayed there for two nights at $40/night .. pricey, but not bad for Ft. Collins! We then decided it was time to stay at our daughter's house, and we couldn't wait to see her, our son-in-law and grandson. With COVID, it had been a while since we'd seen them. We were cautious about our visit, but we thought our risks were low, the kids needed help, and we missed them terribly!

I'll write a separate post about our kids, our new grand-daughter, and our explorations in Colorado with them. I think this is enough for now. I'll wrap this post up with pictures from our camping trip back to Louisiana. On our way back, we decided to go back to the campground in Kansas .. loved our view!

We then stopped at a campground near the Buffalo River in Arkansas. We spent a couple of nights there, and enjoyed the days hiking and relaxing. It was a great way to end our camping trip.

We hiked to the top of a hill for this view of the Buffalo River .. beautiful!

Our first camping adventure was a blast, and we were relieved to learn that camping comfortably in July & August is possible! The 12v fan helped a lot, and when we camped in Colorado we had to go buy a blanket!

There was one thing that didn't go so well ... chiggers! Living in Louisiana, we didn't know much about these pesky critters and never needed to worry about them. Therefore, when we went hiking through a grassy, wooded area to see that beautiful view we had no idea that shorts and sandals were a dumb idea. We had gone hiking, then woke up the next day to start heading home. While packing our camping gear, Ken and I started itching a little bit. Ken had a few red bumps on him, but we didn't think too much of it. By the time we got home that night, we were both itching pretty bad and were both covered in red spots .. I mean covered! It was also Ken's birthday, and he now had a "gift" that kept giving! Short story .. it took about two weeks to be rid of those itchy bumps. Next time we'll wear jeans, shoes & socks!

Anyways, we hope to travel and camp in primitive areas more in the future. It's been just about one year to the day of this post since we left Colorado. Where has the year gone?! We've only been able to camp once since then ... about an hour away from home with a group of friends, which is also a lotta fun. It's been a busy year, and I have lots to catch up on. Look for several more posts soon.

I thank each and every one of you that have stuck around and have read this. Please reach out here or on our Facebook page and let me know you're there! I know it's been a rough year and a half for all of us. Who would've thought we'd still be dealing with COVID?! I hope you all are doing well. Hang in there!

Hasta luego .. until then. Mid-Life Cruising!


Emily said...

Your camping spots look so nice! I am well acquainted with chiggers in North Carolina and didn't realize that Louisiana didn't have them. They are devils! I am so sorry you had to discover them. I look forward to your future posts. Do you think you should rename your blog Mid Life Adventuring? :-)

Ken n Cheryl said...

Yes, those chiggers are no joke! Glad we don't have them on Louisiana. Yes, a name change to Adventuring would make more sense! 😊

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