Sunday, April 07, 2013

Spring Break = Camping in Hocking Hills State Park

The last week of March was Philip's Spring Break so we took off school that week also and used the time to catch up on some housework (when you homeschool that's something that only gets a "lick and a promise" during the school year) and took a camping trip.

This was our first time to go camping when it was really and truly cold. There have been other times I thought that I was cold.....but this trip proved that I only thought I was cold those other times. It was 20 degrees one night and 23 the second. That would not have made for a great camping trip except that the days were very nice - somewhere in the high 50's which is perfect hiking weather. And we learned that cold can be remedied if you have the right equipment (which we worked on and will continue to do so).

Camp all set up and ready to go.

Probably the favorite part of camping is the boys getting the privilege to "hack" to their hearts content. This time we invested in a small axe for each of them to have as their own strictly for camping trips (otherwise all trees in our neighborhood would be in danger).

 Gathering firewood is a close second favorite......probably because it includes elements of hacking.
This trip Darnell Wilson, one of my husband's students, joined us.We enjoyed having him along and he was a wonderful help to Philip.
We took two different hikes - one to Old Man's Cave and the other to Ash Cave. Both were beautiful and where such a clear reminder of God's handiwork. What the earth was like before the Fall must have been magnificent.....what we have in a fallen world is incredible.

 Devil's Bathtub - and area that created a natural whirlpool but the sides were so smooth and slick they say if you ever get in it's very difficult to get out.
 Upper Falls
 Old Man's Cave
 Lower Falls

 The walk to Ash cave was handicap accessible which meant a really nice paved path - even then, Stephen preferred riding on Darnell's shoulders.

 It was incredibly large and beautiful!

We were able to do almost all of our camp cooking over a fire this time (which I prefer) and that was handy particularly cooking breakfast on those chilly mornings.

Daniel managed to cut down a little sapling during the two days we were there using his ax and was quite proud of himself.
One of my concerns as a mother has been that no one get lost - so we bought each of us whistles so that if anyone gets lost they can use it to signal for help. So far, no one has had to use them so I became a little lax. As we were getting ready to go on one of our walks this time I told the boys they didn't need them since we were all going on the hike together......mistake #1. Thankfully, Daniel knew what to do (though he gave our home telephone number and no one could get a signal out of the gorge) and within 30 minutes we were reunited. Lesson learned: children wear whistles at all times.

Another has been that we keep all digits and appendages.......mommy was the only one hurt on this trip. Lesson learned: Mommy needs to be more careful to follow her own advise.
My favorite part of camping besides the quiet and solitude are the stars.......they are magnificent! But getting a picture of them doesn't do them justice.

That was spring break in a nutshell. Now we're back and finishing achievement tests and buckling in to finish the fourth quarter - hard to believe another school year will soon be over.


Brenda said...

Really enjoyed all your photos. Looks like a great place to go.

Nathan Brown said...

OK, so now my dream about Philip insisting that all of us Browns go camping in an igloo doesn't seem so far-fetched - ;o) Stay warm, girl!

Marianne Brown said...

Brenda - it was wonderful and would be a great "day trip" to take even if you don't enjoy camping.
Charity - not far fetched at all - just need a 0 degree sleeping bag!