Sunday, October 4, 2015

Camping at Ledges State Park

We headed up to Ledges State Park this weekend to take the kids camping! Ledges State Park is less than an hour's drive northeast of Des Moines. Not surprisingly, it's a popular camping destination for people from Des Moines and Ames. It's known for its canyons and ledges, but it's also full of forest. I wanted to go check out fall color, but we discovered the trees haven't started changing yet!

We set up camp ($11) and built a fire with wood we purchased there ($5, I believe). The emerald ash borer has just hit this part of the state, and so there are a lot of restrictions on firewood going in and out of counties. Campers shouldn't transport wood across county lines. Anyway, Andrew got the fire going, and I got the tent set up. There were a lot of hazelnut trees/bushes around, and the ground was littered with the shells of hazelnuts and even possibly some pecan shells. I swept as much of it away as I could because they would be sharp to sleep or step on through the tent floor! The kids helped. Once the coals were nice and hot, we made dinner. I'd purchased some pre-cleaned, -sliced, and -mixed veggies from Hy-Vee that turned out great. We made the kids some hot dogs, and Andrew and I ate quinoa burgers.

After dinner, the kids spotted some other kids from a nearby tent. They ran around with the other kids until it got too dark, and then we made smores and went to bed. It wasn't the longest visit, and we didn't get to hike or explore much more than the campground, but we enjoyed our time there.

A duet:

A quick video of the kids having a good time with their campground friends:

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