Monday, November 29, 2010

Camping Trip #2 - Pedernales State Park

In the interest of testing out the Tiger as much as possible before we go on the "big trip", we went camping again!  This time we went to Pedernales State Park a couple of days before Thanksgiving. 

We were hoping it would be cold enough to try out the furnace and the 20 degree rated sleeping bag, but it was HOT!  Typical Texas winter......85 during the day and 65 at night.  Tank tops and shorts weather.  Fortunately, the water was COLD and refreshing, just the way Kipper likes it.

We were there for two nights, and were able to really make ourselves at home. 

So we didn't get to try out out furnace or cold-weather sleeping bag, but we did try out the new bed and layout.  The new layout makes for much more room inside the Tiger.  I'm a big fan of that!  The bed is comfy, but it's still a bed inside of a van and neither of us slept very well either night.  We were SO tired when we got back to Austin.  I took two naps and still went to bed at 9pm!  Kipper was worn out too.  He was out of sorts and kinda disobedient the last day at camp and then slept for about 17 hours when we got back to the house.  The sleeping arrangement will eventually work, but it'll take some time to get used to.  When we go on our real trip, we're going to be sleep deprived and grumpy for the first couple of weeks.  But we'll get over that hump....fingers crossed....

We weren't too tired to enjoy the views!  We used to camp at Pedernales all the time when I was a kid, and one of my favorite spots was the falls.  I remember them being so pretty.  They still are, although apparently deadly......

These two pictures were taken FIVE minutes apart!!!

And these trees are a few miles downstreem.  That current must've been strong!!

Fortunately, we weren't swept away in a flash flood and were able to enjoy the beauty of the river.

The obligatory self portrait

We rode our bikes from the camp site to the falls.  Nice 2-mile ride.  Very easy, until our way back.....

He finally just grabbed on to my shorts and Kipper & I pedalled Greg and his bike back to camp.  And we added "bike repair kit" to our growing list of stuff we need to remember to take with us!

(We were VERY ill-prepared.   I mean, really, who forgets leveling jacks??  And CHAIRS??  Or bug spray?)

After our ride, we hiked a 4-mile trail across the river.  I hate to diss nature, but it was BORING.  It all looked like this:

 Seriously, EVERY step looked exactly the same!  *yawn*

But, one of the park hosts told us about another trail.  So the next morning we hiked that one.  And by "hike", I mean "leisurely walked" because it was only a quarter of a mile and took all of 30 minutes roundtrip.  But it was very beautiful!

Cool branch.

Of course, signs don't apply to us!


All in all, I'd say the 2nd Tiger trip was a success.  We layed on a blanket (because we forgot our camp chairs) and watched the stars.  We got lots of exercise (bike ride with broken chain, super boring 4-mile hike, short pretty walk).  We played cards (gin rummy, baby!).  We made a campfire (even though we didn't have anything to cook on it).  I learned that you can save the coals and restart your fire in the morning - very cool.  We figured out that the box works very well and provides lots of extra room inside. 

Btw, here's how you break down the Tiger.....from home to van in 45 seconds!!

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