Thursday, March 26, 2009

Blanchard Springs Caverns!

Our second trip camping after getting our tent was to Blanchard Springs, which is just north of Mountain View. The Caverns has been discovered and open up for tours since when we made this trip. We arrived at the park late in the afternoon after getting lost several times. The road down the mountain was unimproved at that time and was a adventure if you met anyone because it was so narrow. We arrived at the park and crossed a natural bridge fording across as if we were in a Covered Wagon of the early days. Off to the right, there were kids jumping off the cliffs into what looked like a foot of water. We thought that someone was going to break their necks. We found a camp site back in the trees and set up camp. There was no picnic table or electical service there at that time. We had our Coleman Lantern for lights and Coleman pump-up stove to cook on. This was before the grilles were there and you had to go into the woods to get firewood for a fire. This was a must because there were a few mosquitoes around...not to mention the snakes, bears and other wild animals around. After we got our tent put up and was cooking supper, there was a man with several boys following him coming down the trail. They stopped and started talking to us about all they had been doing. It was a Boy Scout Troop and they had been the ones that we had seen jumping off the cliffs into the water. They were camped not far from us and after supper, we all visited around the campfire and roasted marshmellons and talked. They had been out in the woods hunting different herbs and plants for their projects. They had brought us some Root-a Berry tea and wanted us to sample it, which we all did and believe it or not, it was very good if you sweeten it. The troop was scheduled to leave the next morning, so we said our farewells when they went back to camp.Again, we got to try out the blow-up mattresses and our tent. It got a little cool at night, but we slept very well that night. The next day, we got a chance to try out the cliffs and the swimming hole. The water was so clear that what we thought was shallow water was indeed very deep, hence the reason no one broke their necks when jumping from the cliffs. We spent about three night there and it was so was in late August and a very good way to end the summer before the kids started back to school.
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