The middle of November provided slightly cooler temperatures and riverfront views at Thousand Trails. Our only campground to date that didn’t assign campsites in advance, rather you got to pick. Fortunately for us, our smaller setup using a slide in camper on our pick up allowed us to fit in the last open riverfront site typically too tiny for most rv’s.
Upon arrival we had less than 30 minutes before nightfall, luckily we made quick work of it all and was able to take a long trail hike in the dark for some night fishing before setting up a campfire back at our spot. Unfortunately, we didn’t catch any fish but the trials were well maintained and the rivers rushing sounds were quite soothing.
Back at our weekend home base, we played Cards Against Humanity, Charlie won. Afterwards, we enjoyed our traditional Koegel hotdogs cooked over an open fire and paired it with tuna pasta salad for dinner; so good! Not your average hotdog, these Vienna style wieners are unlike any other and burst with each bite; such big fans we meet the truck each year in Florida.
With sweatshirts on, dad and I stayed up playing Phase 10 while Charlie retreated to the camper after a shower in the well maintained bathhouse equipped with full laundry setup. The entire park was a class act, full with happy campers and trails.
As the fire slowly began to dwindle after using our allocated three bundles of wood, us parents finally crawled into our cozy camper for a good night's rest. Upon waking, the mist rising from the Peace River was almost mystical. I was so excited to make a fresh, hot cup of coffee and cuddle up with my book and throw blanket while the boys continued to sleep. Tuesdays with Morrie, written by Mitch Albom, is such a well written story about the lesson of life and living. My second time reading this book, it meant even more to me as I see my son growing so quickly; what precious opportunities this glampin' and river roamin' have afforded us.
From the river, it's a long walk to the bathhouse for one's morning "movements." So, be sure to plan accordingly and make haste while saying hi to fellow campers along the way. Shortly after the boys finally woke, we closed down our camper and campsite destined for the Brownville Park boat ramp. A mere 15 minute drive, the onsite boat ramp proved too be too narrow and the water too shallow. Our little group was happy to make the drive and found the county park equipped with bathhouse and campsites packed. Though their boat ramp was far better for our voyage, our campground was far better and cleaner. Once on the Peace River we headed southwest as it snaked through peaceful terrain. For this year, this river had the most amount of gators with a spotting of over 26 during our journey!
A simple lunch of rolls with ham, salami, mustard, pickles and Swiss cheese paired with cool ranch Doritos had us satisfied and in awe of the desolate meandering this northern stretch of the Peace River offered. With nightfall coming earlier, we wrapped up our fishing and roaming around 2pm and gave ourselves plenty of time to stop by the local gas station to fuel up, grab ice and some cheesy nachos. Once back at the site, we quickly re-setup and manged to get it all done just as the rain came. Since we were already in water clothes, we sat outside and fished a bit, shared laughs and chatted up the neighbor before prepping for dinner. As a funny story, your teenager might think they don't need you for much and that they have it all figured out; but chances are good without specific instructions they will burn velveteen mac & cheese...just saying. During this time period, we tried to get a new chocolate lab puppy and our son had to slide into the neighbor's camper when they realized they locked themselves out with their toddle napping inside; so many adventures!
All in all; rave reviews for this campground and its amenities. Though the general store never opened while we were there and the office had all our entry papers in a folder outside; it was an easy to navigate experience with a whole Pioneer Park across the street for sightseeing. A simple two hour drive from our hometown, I am glad we went and even if we didn't catch a single fish; had the time all together.