10/8 - 10/10 . . . Drove my family from Columbia to Devil's Fork State Park for a weekend outing. My brother in law has been wanting to get his wife and two daughters out for their first camping experience so we decided to tie this all together with SwampFox's proposal to have a hang at DFSP. This would also be the first time that my family would all hang together.
We arrived in the early evening hours and with 3 HH Expeds and my WBBB setup, I proceeded to make the trek back and forth to unload our vehicle, set up my former shelter (some people call it a tent...) for my brother inlaw and his family who arrived just conveniently after their home for the weekend was up, set up the kitchen so that all the girls could eat "Walking Tacos", and then started charcoal for Skip and me to enjoy a couple of steaks. . . which we ate at 10:00 pm . Got to meet SwampFox during that time and what a genuinely nice guy and seems to be very excited about his hanging. WFR also stopped by and brought me a frosty beverage, he lost a side bet with me during our fantasy football matchup, but thats just minor details . . . By 11:00 pm, finished cleaning up from the evening dinner, I could hear the faint cry of my BB saying it was lonely.
Saturday morning, I checked in with my wife to see how she slept. Since I just received my new Winter CrowsNest the day before we left (Thanks StormCrow and Throwren !...) I wanted my wife to sleep well so I "allowed" her to have first crack at it. For her first time in the hammock, she said that was the best sleep she has ever had while camping . So, on to make breakfast of eggs, bacon, and fruit for my crew of 8. After my KP duties were complete, we had the arrival of my inlaws, Gram & Doc, and also the arrival of my friend Jason and his family of 4. We had a nice conversation about hammocks and kept up with our Gamecocks as they hosted the Crimson Tide and then politely pointed southwest to show them the way home.
That evening we prepared a "Low Country Frogmore Beaufort Boil Stew" (sorry, its a Goat Island thing...) minus the potatoes since they were left at home. I also prepared a pineapple upside down cake which turned out awesome! Later that evening as my inlaws and Jason and his family were leaving, SwampFox shows up with his wife and a dutch oven filled with Chocolate Turtle Cake. WOW! Still warm, melty goodness of caramel all on top . . .as full as I was from everything prior, I still had to give that a shot. Definitely a good thing and I can see that this SwampFox has a knack for dutch oven goodies. Looking forward to many more! SwampFox also tells me that his wife will also be hanging for her first time on Saturday evening. I hope that all went well and she is looking forward to more hangs.
Sunday morning comes early as our neighboring campers decide to let their dogs bark away at 6:30 am. At this point my wife says her sleep went downhill and was ready to get back on the road and head home. So after a quick breakfast, break down camp, trek the gear uphill to the van, we headed back to Columbia.
Overall it was a great trip with great weather. My brother in law's family had a great first time experience and rated as a 10, I got to meet the "infamous" SwampFox (side note... one of the kids with us said we didn't have to worry about the SwampFox showing up for dessert, he was already dead! . . . see Francis Marion for details ), my wife really enjoyed her first outing in the hammock, my girls already knew that they loved camping in their hammocks and was glad that mommy had a good experience too. For me, it was WORK ! But in the end it paid off well .
I know, I know. . .pics. I am hopeful that SwampFox can add some credibility to this trip as he tooks a few pics. I just didn't have the time.