Camping Ala Retro

When I was a child, my mom would frequently take my brother and I camping. Every spring break and at least two or three trips each summer. Inevitably, several of those trips each year would include at least a short stay at Lake Cushman State Park. We would swim, hike, ride our bikes, attend the park rangers’ amphitheater shows, enjoy campfires…basically everything you dream of in a childhood summer. Sadly, at some point after I graduated high school, the state park was sold off to a private owner.

Reading her Highlights magazine by the campfire
Poor Alden was often relegated to the pack & play to keep him contained in the campsite and out of the fire.

Only recently did I discover that the new owners had reopened the park to the public for camping. I was ecstatic! I immediately called my mom and we wasted no time planning a camping trip. I had told Zach about all my idyllic childhood memories from Lake Cushman, and couldn’t wait to share this special place with him and the kids.

Throwing rocks in the lake. A universal childhood pastime.
A Zoey in motion.

We joined up there with my parents, us toting tents and them towing their new camper that has replaced the RV we had when I was a kid. As it was still only May, it was a bit too cold for swimming in the lake, which was disappointing. We did enjoy campfires and roasting marshmallows, though. We also took a hike along a trail that encircles the lake. We hiked over a mile before turning back, and Zoey did the entire thing without so much as a single complaint! Eleanor also made it nearly the entire hike before needing a shoulder ride for the last stretch back to the campsite. The outdoors (or the “real woods” as the girls call it) seems to agree with my children.

Hiking with Grandma.

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