We enjoyed a brief but lovely camping trip at Inks Lake State Park this past weekend. We thought of it as a belated anniversary getaway, of sorts. Despite our mutual love for camping and countless camping trips over the years, this was our first camping trip together since we've been married.
I prepared myself for the inevitability that we wouldn't be 100% prepared. We were a little out of practice. Ideally, we want to be prepared/organized enough that we can go on impromptu camping trips whenever we're in the mood. I'd say we're one step closer to that now...after forgetting a few things on this trip, such as pillows. ;)
The terrain is so interesting. The word harsh comes to mind, but I think striking better conveys the feel of the landscape. The main highlights were views of the lake and Devil's Waterhole, plus countless rock formations and cacti dotting the landscape. I joked about a so-called "cold-snap" here, but the weather dipped into much cooler temperatures than we expected—50's in the mornings and highs in the low- to mid-60's. Despite being somewhat unprepared for the cooler weather, (we ate our breakfast wrapped up in our spare quilt—no complaints) it was perfect. I wished I could quickly finish my Hitchhiker shawl so that I could wear it.
On drought conditions and the burn ban:
We chose this park because Inks Lake is particularly drought-resistant and still great for swimming right now (especially the Devil's Waterhole area). Although we didn't have any swimming weather (see above), the lake was beautiful and made for a cool breeze and a great view. Like other area parks, Inks Lake is currently under a burn ban, and since we haven't invested in a camp stove yet, we opted for cooler-friendly meals that didn't require cooking.
For our super short trip, our meals included these muffins (our friend Molly made us the other muffins), fruit, hard-boiled eggs for breakfast, and salami and a few nice cheeses for lunch the following day. For a longer trip during a burn ban, we'd prefer to bring a propane stove (check to see if they're permitted at the park you're visiting) to allow for more food variety. We also packed cold brew coffee concentrate (we got our's from Trader Joe's, but it's simple to make it yourself) so we could still enjoy our coffee, even without a heating source.
What we thought:
It was like a great novel you know you'll love the ending to, but aren't in a hurry to finish. We plan to savor this park and bring pillows (and friends) next time.