After posting the last blog, I thought I would enjoy a nice Saturday afternoon relaxing by the water at Lake Bronson State Park. A gentle breeze kept the skeeters away. Pontoon boats seemed to be popular.
As was my campsite. People needed someplace to keep their toys.
I left on Sunday morning and made a stop at Old Mill State Park about 40 miles away to the southwest.
This is a small park with only 25 sites situated alongside the Middle River.
There is an old mill with a few buildings still standing.
I took a peek inside.
Put some wheels on it and I could tow it around the country.
Oh, there is also a good sized swimming hole.
I continued on 80 miles to the Red River State Recreation Area.
I set up camp and read up on this place. It has an interesting backstory.
But first I had some cleaning to do on Monday. My car was dirty, my clothes were dirty, and my skin was all pasty white from the rain. I wondered if there was a place to take care of all that.
I headed back to camp to explore.
See, in April 1997 there was a huge flood on the Red River which runs between the cities of Grand Forks in North Dakota and East Grand Forks in Minnesota. The previous winter's snowpack was over 12 feet in the area and when it melted...
The river rose 30 feet over it's banks and among the many areas hit was a neighborhood called Sherlock Park. All the homes here were destroyed.
There were some dikes built in the aftermath but not in that area. It was decided to make it into a unique campground. The roads were already in place. There was water, electricity, and sewers.
I climbed up on the dike and took a photo of a neighborhood transformed into a campground.
There are 109 sites here and 85 are pull-throughs with full hookups, making this a very popular spot for the big RV crowd. Plus, it is only a few hundred feet away from a movie theater and several riverfront restaurants.
Across the street from Whitey's is one of the driving forces in the development.
Cabelas. Yes, you can walk there in 3 minutes from the campground. I timed it. The city convinced the company to open a new store and others followed it.
So the sites here are pretty much the same, you just need to find one with some shade. Like number 89.
I really liked these two towns. I walked the campground on Tuesday morning and then left, heading 120 miles southeast to Lake Bemidji State Park.
There are 96 sites here and about half have electricity. There was also the friendliest herd of campers I had come across. Everyone was waving at me as I walked around. I waved back but didn't get any response. I looked around and finally realized it is just a natural reaction to skeeters that people develop in this area. It becomes second nature, like breathing.
So I didn't feel shunned. I swatted a skeeter and set up camp.
Fully deployed once again. Wednesday I took the trailer in to be fixed.
Before that I went for a ride around the lake area. I found two bears climbing on a sign near a beautiful beach.
I also found a nice marina.
There is a State Trail nearby, the Paul Bunyan, and there is a connecting spur from the campground.
The trail goes all the way to Brainerd, 107 miles away. I did not ride all of it.
I did walk a boardwalk that goes all the way to Sundew Pond.
Thursday morning I walked the campground. There are four loops that ascend a hillside. The lowest loop, the one next to the lake, is the only one without electricity. The sites are big and most have shade, like number 25.
Back at camp I played with some squirrels.
Friday I picked up the trailer. It turned out just fine.
The horizontal pieces of diamond plate were already there. They matched it with the corner pieces. Not original but better.
I was packing up Saturday morning when one of my neighbors stopped by. He had left some food for me on my table. Cool. Breakfast.
And not just breakfast, the best breakfast next to tacos.
Thank you my North Dakota friends.
Regards, Park Ranger