Saturday, October 20, 2012

North Eastern Iowa Camping

The last time our family went camping, Ezra was 6 months old, and we went to the Christian Reformed Conference Grounds on Lake Michigan.  This week we drove through towns like Elkader, Decorah, McGregor, and Prairie DuChein, WI.

On the way there we stopped at Dyersville to buy Christmas gifts at the Ertl toy store.  We were pretty tricky about that.

Each town along the River was very old.  The historical buildings were so much older than the small towns here in the middle of the state.  The boys soon learned that everything followed the Mississippi River - Highways, train tracks, and campgrounds.

My personal favorite was Effigy Mounds.  We hiked to Firepoint lookout over the Mississippi River.  The land reminded me of Cedar Bluffs over the DesMoines river near Eveland Access - south of Oskaloosa, only much larger.  Several of the burial mounds were in circles, or in the shapes of animals, and were on the tops of the bluffs.  Zachary desperately wanted to run up and down them, but part of the National Park rules were to follow the path, and not walk on the burial mounds.

Brian's favorite was probably trout fishing.  Those pictures are on his phone, and I haven't gotten them yet.  Each youth is able to catch two fish, so we cleaned and took home six fish.  It was a little cold.

We had two rainy days.  We went to Cabella's in Prairie du Chein, made a camper out of a cardboard box and tacky glue, drove around to look at old buildings, and spent an afternoon at Culver's eating french fries, ice cream, and playing GoFish and War.We also had good nap times in the camper on those days.

Our camground overlooked the M. River, and Tue through Thur we were practically the only ones in the campground.  Friday things filled up.

Our food schedule included bacon, sausage, eggs, Peanut Butter sandwhiches, dear bologne, tonka pies, chilli soup and cheesy brocolli soup, oatmeal cream pies, fudge from the Cannery in PdC, and homemade bread.  The boys ate so well at every meal.  I figured they'd run out of space, but they didn't.  We even stopped at Dyersville McDonalds on the way home, and they ate even more.

Thank you Aunt Julie for letting us borrow the camper!  We definitely need to buy one of our own someday.  We had such a good time, and will be making this trip again.