Travel Journal 1: High Falls State Park

Well, this is it! The girls and i are off on a wild state park camping trip up to Virginia for two weeks!

The trip began with a heart-stopping incident where the car refused to start, or even turn over. It had just been in for an oil change and check the day before,  and all the lights still inexplicably worked. Well,  it’s not really a car camping trip without some kind of mechanical disaster. Most of my memories of family car trips involve sitting in auto repair waiting rooms all over the country at some point during each journey.

Ethan disconnected the battery, hooked it up again, and tinkered with it, and was just about to begin doing things to the starter while i was turning the key, when i realized it had been left in “drive” instead of “park”. Whew!

At some point just after noon, we managed to fit most necessary things and ourselves in the tiny Honda and headed out. I planned 3-4 hour legs, rather than the 6-10 hours my parents always did. Now that i have children i realize my parents were insane when it came to car trips. 

 When we arrived at High Falls, it had clearly just poured like crazy and was still drizzling. When it seemed to be mostly cleared up we hopped out and began to struggle with our new tent. 

The tent, which was probably designed by a middle schooler in the third world, is  nicknamed here after “The Green Goblin”, because you can hear it cackling evilly as you struggle to thread the fragile poles through the specially-designed-to-catch fabric sleeves in EXACTLY the correct,  non-specified order, and wonder what the 50,000 extra hooks on the sides are supposed to attach to. 

As soon as it was spread out and halfway put up the wrong way, it started drizzling again. We frantically tried to get the rain fly to match up with the shape of the tent, and then realized that was impossible, and keeping the tent dry relied on staking out a dozen camo-green, nearly invisible fine threads that stretched to the farthest reaches of our campsite and lay in convenient directions to trip over in the middle of the night. 

Once the rain fly was secured, it stopped raining for the rest of the evening. The sun was still bright, so we wandered down the trails a bit before evening. 

It was beautifully misty beside the falls. We discovered some little creatures and treasures. 

The next morning we hiked along the river. 

It was beautiful woodland, all mossy and strewn with dewy spider webs. Little twinkling creeks wound through the low places.

 Along the river it looked tropical with taro plants lining the river. We saw turtles and beautiful wildflowers. 

We’re packed up and headed to our next stop now!

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