Sunday, July 24, 2016

A Camping We Will Go - Week of July 18th

All packed and ready to roll!
“A great many people, and more all the time, live their entire lives without ever once sleeping out under the stars.” ~ Alan S. Kesselheim

To some, the word "camping" may invoke a variety of descriptive words...bugs, repellent, outdoors, fire, s'mores, relaxing.  Whatever it may mean to you, for Cam, it is a chance to experience living in nature for three whole nights.
Three whole nights...this has been his request since we departed Fisherman's Island last year after staying 2 nights.  He has remembered and reminded his parents every so often over the course of 2016.  Wednesday afternoon after checking our list and squeezing camping supplies and our family into the van, we were finally on our way!

Pulling into the campground!
Upon arrival, we were greeted by Ms. Ann, Katherine & Paul, Christopher & Cassie, Zach and the great outdoors.  We were able to borrow Molly & Gordy's tent this year and what an upgrade- our palatial abode for the duration was roomy and comfortable.  The rustic camping experience lives up to its meaning- plain, simple, rural.  Cooking on the campfire, outhouses and no electricity rule this state park campground.  It is quiet, serene and nestled under a canopy of trees.

Of course, the big bonus of this 2500+ acre area - you're right next to Lake Michigan!  We all took part in sunset viewing and it seems no matter how many you see on the big lake, each one displays its own unique artwork.

With the warm water temperatures, we spent a great deal of our time during the day beach side, soaking up the sun.  We took our baths in the lake and Cam enjoyed a train of inner tubes behind him in the Cam Mobile.  He was filling up his tank at imaginary gas stations and stopping at different ports.  We've also noted how friendly our fellow campers are.  Many commented about Cam's ride and how cool it is!
Using a frisbee, there were endless pie creations being served sand side.

Cam is an early riser and since we didn't want to disturb our fellow campers, he and Jane went on an excursion every morning.  Now, in true confession, Jane may have used her Starbucks app to discover that one of the coveted coffee houses was less than 20 minutes away.

Due to this diversion, Cam and Jane found the Ironton Ferry!  At first, they thought it was so silly that the GPS told them to board a ferry, so they waited until the next day to take Chris along too.  Only four vehicles, and a handful of bikes and people can board to cross the southern part of Lake Charlevoix.  Its operation began in 1876 and it can make up to 100 trips a day!  The trip across is less than 10 minutes and the $3 ticket is totally worth it.

Back at camp, we enjoyed having Oma & Opa with us for dinner one night which was such a treat.  Cam showed them around the campground and somehow food always seems to taste better around a campfire.  Since Oma used to work for The Girl Scouts of America, she felt right at home.

A stay near Charlevoix wouldn't be complete without heading into town for ice cream one evening.

We can't thank Katherine and Ann enough for all of the prep and planning and for helping us start a new tradition of Fishy Island camping. Because of Katherine first taking care of Cam when he was just a little guy, our families are forever a part of each other's lives.  It's easy to see these two will have a special connection for life.

Cam highly recommends you do yourself a favor and sometime soon, be sure to sleep out under the stars!  (The car works too...especially if you're just plain tuckered out!)

Camology Quotes:
It was later in the evening when the decision was made to head into town for ice cream ...
"They should really deliver ice cream to our campsite!"

As we were driving out of camp on our departure day, Cam was asking why we had to leave at a certain time.  We told him other campers were going to stay in the site we were at: 

"I don't want to leave, but we have to follow the rules."

Driving home, we realized it was past lunchtime and we weren't seeing any places to stop in sight.  The GPS has an option to find places to eat nearby. Cam was excited to learn the nearest place was McDonald's.
"Whoever invented this GPS is a genius!"

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