One week until summer blast off and all systems are go! I could not be more pleased with how the Lagun table mount is working, and we got to put it through its paces during travel to see how sturdy it is. I created a velcro strap with a D ring on one end that acts as an insurance policy in case any of the arm locks give way. I also stuck our wedge cushions between the table and the front wall for the same reasons. On arrival at the state park, it looked as solid as when we left. Concerning the blue coroplast project, there was one espresso cup that shifted onto its side, so I’ll be hot gluing some things this week. Overall though, we’re looking ready to roll. Oh, and I can also report that the magnet closure on the screen room flap is a success! So the pain, and extra magnets, were worth it.
Calaveras is such a nice place to go. A bit of a drive at 3 1/2 hours, but May is the perfect time to visit. The sites are nicely spaced and ours overlooked a huge meadow. Little rivers are running babblingly full right now and you can often spot the head of a duck, seemingly floating through the grass. In fact, they are gliding along the many rivulets cutting across flats until the water collects into larger streams. I got to spend Friday and Saturday evenings, blissing out to the sound of frogs and water.
The weather reported likely thunderstorms Saturday, so Richard took the bikes off. As it turned out, we experienced maybe one solid minute of rain Saturday night, but that was it. During the day, we enjoyed blue skies and a perfect five mile hike through the South Grove. The drive there would make for a beautiful, but very challenging, bike ride. Richard took notes as we drove and decided he was happy to be in a car. But maybe some day.
The dogwoods are blooming all over the park and there seems to be an explosion of ladybugs happening right now. None of my photos captured the swarms of them, but they were all over the place. Funny how swarms of ladybugs do not irritate. It helps that they don’t try to bite you, or buzz in your ear, or even try to land on you. So walking through a swarm of symmetrically marked, brightly colored beetles can thus be deemed “cool.”
This trail was far less crowded than the popular one closer to the Visitor Center, and it boasts the largest tree in the park. We did pass by a very large group of Mennonites (I think?) on the trail, along with a cluster of abandoned strollers down closer to the trailhead. It kind of looked like a scene out of the past, except there were strollers rather than wagons and oxen left behind. One of the strollers appeared to have had a blowout.
Sunday we packed up in no great hurry and talked through the few remaining errands we need to get done this week. I think it will be safe to leave my puffy and sleeping bag jacket at home. Hope I don’t regret that decision. The screen room should be a very nice addition this summer. I ditched the storage bag it comes with, in favor of a much larger solution. It is, in fact, the original carrying case that came with my kayak, since I upgraded that to the Advanced Elements Kayakpack. Having oversized cases makes a world of difference when you’re packing up.
Perfect weekend outing before our summer launch! Can’t wait!
Total miles: 136.0, 14.3 mpg (up, coming home: 16.4), 3 hours 40 min. Site 6. Good midday solar. NO ATT or Verizon, but there is WiFi at the Visitor Center. Good dump station.