At the beginning of August, we took our first camping trip since Riv was born. Before you get too impressed, I should probably disclose that we were in an air conditioned trailer with a full kitchen and bathroom. And the other family we went with cooked all of the meals. And my sister also came along to offer an extra set of hands. So, yeah… We drove up on a Sunday afternoon and finally made it to the campground, Wishon Village, around 11 p.m. The RV Park is southeast of Shaver Lake and located in the Sierra National Forest. River has recently decided that he hates car rides and being strapped into his car seat, so that made for a “lively” drive. My sister is a saint and sat in the back comforting him and playing with him the whole way up. Thanks for being amazing, Ry! What would’ve been a six-hour-drive, ended up taking about eight hours with all of the feeding and poopy diaper stops we had to make along the way. We’re still adjusting to the fact that this is our life now!Sam had notified the campground that we’d be arriving late and they assured him they’d leave the trailer open with the keys inside. Well, they didn’t. Tired mom, hungry baby, cold weather, no cell service. We’re talkin’ a full-blown there’s-a-payphone-on-the-property-because-there’s-actually-no-cell-service situation. Not the best start but, luckily, our friend was awake and knew where the host was staying. He and Sam had to wake him up around 11:30 after trying to break into the trailer on their own a dozen different ways. The wait was totally worth it, though. The trailer was clean, big (one master bedroom with a queen-sized bed and another bedroom at the other end with two bunk beds), air conditioned/heated, and had all the amenities any glamper could ever need. While I’m totally fine with shared restrooms and sleeping in tents, this was a whole other level of awesome. I definitely see us going back there for years to come, especially with the trailers being able to accommodate bigger families.The first night was pretty rough on Riv. We had him sleeping in a small Pack N’ Play (that fit perfectly in the trailer, by the way), but he was up every single hour from midnight to six in the morning. We didn’t think the heater was necessary, but he ended up sleeping a lot better the next few nights when we finally turned it on. We spent the first day at King’s River, fishing, picnicking, and soaking up the slow life. Not having cell service was seriously a blessing in disguise. Having no distractions meant we were able to really connect with each other and appreciate the beauty all around us. I was about to say it was the perfect detox, but we totally bought Wifi back at the campsite, so…not so much. A storm rolled in later that afternoon and we were able to sneak up to a cool lookout before finding shelter for most of the evening. Just one more reason we were really happy to be staying in a trailer instead of a tent.The next day, we ventured to Courtright Reservoir (about 15 minutes away) for another relaxing day. We fished (all three of us caught one!), jumped in the freezing cold water, and hauled ass out of there once we saw another storm on the horizon. The roads up there are super windy and have no guard rails, so driving in the full-on downpour was a little scary. Riv screaming in the backseat wasn’t super helpful either. Nonetheless, we had been wanting to see the giant Sequoia trees at McKinley Grove, so we took a little detour on our way back to camp. These trees are seriously huge, with most of them being close to 250 feet tall. Seeing Sam holding River at the base of one was such a trip – big tree, tiny humans! Being from Southern California, I have a natural affinity for palm trees, but I don’t think there’s anything more magical than a giant field of Sequoias. We weren’t able to stay long because of the storm, but we got our fix for the day and found our way back to camp.After two full days of uninterrupted time in nature, good conversation, a million s’mores, and lots of new memories, we packed up on Wednesday and headed back home. We made the most of our drive down with a couple cool stops along the way. The first was the Trail of 100 Giants. It’s located in the Sequoia National Forest and is home to a half-mile walking trail through another grove of giant Sequoias. Thanks to the good weather, we were able to walk the whole thing and take in the massive beauties a lot better than the day before. From there, we went to Dome Rock per the recommendation of a parking attendant at the Trail of 100 Giants. It did not disappoint! It’s easy to miss, so getting instructions from a local was definitely helpful. In case you’re ever interested, use Forest Route 21S70, Sequoia National Forest, Springville, CA 93265 as the address. We drove to the base of what looked like a giant rock and started climbing. As you can see from the photos, the views are insane. Well worth the pitstop in our opinions!
Aside from the Pack N’ Play, the other baby items we brought were our baby monitor (so we could go up to our friends’ campsite and still keep an eye on Riv), a foldable bathtub (we also brought this to the river for him to lounge in), a Boppy (for comfortable feeding around the campsite), and the Ergobaby (we used this A TON —during the day while we were by the water and at night when we were eating/hanging out around the trailer). In terms of clothes, I wrapped a bib around each matching outfit to maximize space and separated everything into plastic bags. One bag had his day clothes/bibs, one had all of his sleepwear, beanies, and socks, and the third had all of the burp rags and muslin blankets. This made it easy to pack in a suitcase and know where everything was once we got there.
We don’t have any other trips on the horizon, but I’m already itching for the next one.
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