The weather is finally starting to feel like fall! I even noticed a few leaves changing on my drive home from work the other day which confirmed those fall feelings. For many, fall means the last chance to pitch a tent, roast s’mores, or get the RV out of the driveway one last time for the year. For this girl, fall means sipping on pumpkin spice lattes, watching football, and pulling out the boots that have been wanting some love all summer.
Nevertheless, I decided to see what the rave is with camping, and I gave it a shot at Explore Park. Luckily, I had my friend Keara, who goes camping regularly with her family, with me. I showed up in sandals and jeans and she looked at me like I was crazy.
We made it there during check in so we headed to the visitor’s center where we got our packets, which contained a map, useful information, the parking decal, and information on the attractions within the park. We did a little bit of shopping in the artisan shop- Keara got a couple pairs of earrings, and I got a hat; Keara figured it might be useful for our camping adventure.
We were shuttled to our campsite, #9, and decided the first thing we should do is pitch our tent. I have heard that Explore Park also has cabins and yurts you can stay in overnight. I would’ve much rather stayed in one of those, but Keara was all excited to sleep in tents by the river. Pitching the tent ended up being much easier than I thought; however, we did put the “rain fly” (new camping vocab word I learned during this trip) on backwards. Luckily there was a very kind park expert who walked by and asked how everything was going. When he warned us about the chance for rain, that’s when we realized the rain fly was on backward.
The best part was definitely roasting s’mores. If I’m being honest, that was the only thing that convinced me to go on this little camping trip. While the expert was there, we had him help us light the fire, and holy cow I had such a hard time with the lighter! Knowing I had that much trouble with a lighter, I can’t imagine how it would’ve gone if we had given it the ol’ scouts try and tried lighting it with sticks. We got our s’mores though, which is the main thing! Well, that and we didn’t catch anything on fire.
Keara thought she might cook dinner over the fire, but heading up to Twin Creeks Brewpub was more my speed. They are only open on the weekends, so if you’re wanting to check it out, make sure to plan your trip accordingly.
We didn’t have the chance to check out the ultimate frisbee course which was a bummer. My friends and I used to play disc golf on our college’s campus, so knowing that Explore Park’s course is one of the best on the East Coast, made me want to come back ASAP. I also really want to do TreeTop Quest before the season ends later this month.
All in all, it was a fun first camping experience. Everyone at the park was super helpful and it was very much so designed that even the un-naturey people like me can still enjoy it! See more from our camping adventure here. Next time I’m definitely sleeping in a yurt!
Catch me next time on the roam!
Your soon-to-be nature expert,
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