Spring break-out rolled in late this year following a horrific winter of cold temps and snow accumulation that lingered for months. Break-out is that moment that every camper waits for – hauling the camper out of storage, and readying it for the first outing of the spring. This year for the first time, we stored the Silvermine around the back side of the garage where it would be out of the way of shoveling driveway snow! What a fortunate decision that turned out to be with our record snowfalls!
Break-out needed to happen for us during Tom’s spring break (March 20 – 23) and luckily there was a two-day span of nice weather predicted for Deer Creek State Park, 155 miles south of us and west of Columbus. Tom put the battery in, but we held off on filling the water system as I am sure temps will be below freezing again!
Thursday morning we took the scenic route, meandering along the country roads, through small towns, and stopping at London, OH for lunch in a likely-looking local eatery. It turned out to be a bust as far as the food went. Tom's daily special of Baked Steak was a preformed meat patty (all of 1/4" thick) and served on a bun . Not at all what he had in mind!
We had not made reservations and did not expect a problem securing a campsite, but we were not expecting to be the only people (other than the campground hosts) in residence. With plenty to choose from, we ended up two sites down from the open, heated, bath house. Buds were not yet on the trees, there were no sure signs of spring, and the temps were in the low 50's -- but we were still grateful to on our first camp out of the season.
We aren't sure of the last time that we were at Deer Creek SP, but think it was sometime around 1987! Early in the afternoon we drove to check out the lodge, one of Ohio's resort-style facilities. Somewhat plain of 70ish vintage on the outside, the inside was nicely done. On the drive. the deer were out to welcome us!
The evening’s supper was stew made at home (meat from our October visit to an Elk Farm) and reheated at the campground. We sat outside enjoying the stew, the fire, and the evening, until sundown when the temperature dropped dramatically and the warmth of the Silvermine beckoned.
Friday morning we woke to temperatures in the mid-30’s and a text from Grandma in Van Wert that reported snow flurries! With predictions to climb into the high 60’s in our area, we headed out to tour Chillicothe the first capital city of Ohio. My “Around Me” APP led me to a delicious-sounding antique store named Rickety-Persnickety, and that was our first destination. What an enjoyable little store it was! Intrigued with the name, it got me to thinking that, if I ever bought a little vintage trailer to glamp up, I would name it The Rickety-Persnickety!
For lunch in Chillicothe we finally hit pay dirt for the hometown eatery -- Carl's Diner! It had outstanding food and a wonderful history; it was established on the site of the 1939 World's Fair in New York City and moved to Chillicothe . . . here is the whole history if you are interested:
A bit more of a walk around Chillicothe with the temperature climbing into the high 60's convinced us to head back for a real campsite celebration. It was a glorious afternoon of sitting, walking the dogs, and cooking and eating supper outside, and we truly felt that this was a worthy spring break-out!
This is just the beginning of our 2014 camping season, and we can’t wait to jump into full swing. The calendar is full of rallies, weekend trips, vacations, and outings. Tom is celebrating retirement, after 40 years of teaching, which opens up a whole new continuum to the camping season! We can't wait to see who we run into down the road.
We don’t go camping any more . . . we go ‘streamin’ ! The “SIlvermine and His” is our 2016 23' Airstream, and ‘streamin’ is the name we use to describe our adventures. Stream along as we document everything from weekend trips to longer summer excursions and full-blown vacations. You know what they say: if you’re not in an Airstream – you’re just camping!
Tom & Ella Brown