19 August 2019

2019's Fourth Summer Trip - Bear Lake

We returned from Jackson Hole on Saturday night, went to church on Sunday, and then went to Bear Lake on Monday. It was a quick turnaround.

We had blocked out the days on our calendar that we planned to go to Bear Lake. Eric and I had driven by, but we'd never been there. We knew lots of people go there for vacations and family reunions, so Eric asked a good friend what we should do. The good friend asked when we'd be there. Eric told him our dates and he said that's when his family and half a dozen other families (some we knew, some we didn't) would be there. They all stayed at a big KOA in their RVs and campers. We are not an RV family, but we figured we'd join the party and sleep in our tent at the KOA. (I don't generally recommend camping at a KOA, because what's the point of camping in a place surrounded by people? But, this time, we wanted to be by all our friends.)

On the way up we stopped at Ricks Spring, which was neat.

We stopped at Tony Grove to go fishing, which was a bust. It's a beautiful spot, though, and it would be a good place to camp.

One night we went to dinner with friends. Other nights we just gathered around various propane-fueled fires for roasting marshmallows and staying up too late chatting.

This KOA is rather large. It features a playground, mini golf, and other fun activities for kids. The girls were particular fans of riding around in the "train" in the evenings.

We went with lots of friends to the Minnetonka Caves, which was very cool. I love caves.

Before the tour started, our tour guide asked if there were any questions. The only people who had questions were our three children. (We were in a group of about 30-40 people.) At one point when he asked again if there were any questions Trixie asked, "Why is there so many rocks in here?" He told her that people brought the rocks in and left them. Also when the guide asked if there were any history buffs in the group, Eric and I were the only ones to raise our hands.

After the cave we stopped on the side of the road to go canoeing on the lake for a little bit. We sure do fill up a canoe!

After dinner that night we rented one of those horrible surries. They are insanely hard to pedal! They need some gears. The boys didn't want to come, and they missed out. (But we didn't miss them since they wouldn't have been tall enough to reach the pedals, and we would have had a lot more weight to haul.) We rode down and got shakes, and then went back up to camp.

The last day we went to the north beach and played in the sand, swam, and canoed some more. Everybody got at least a little bit sunburned.

We stopped for shakes one more time. (It was the third time for the parents and girls, the second time for the boys since they missed the surry ride.)

Then we stopped on the way to hike the Timber Pine Loop Trail. It was really hot when we weren't in the shade, but the information signs along the way made it really educational (at least for me). It was so interesting to learn about how the plants "migrate" into a new area - which plants come first, which follow, and what animals come along with them.

This tree is like two thousand years old. (There weren't signs telling us not to climb it.)

Trixie got tired of being in the carrier and insisted on walking on her own. Each time, she'd take of running and fleefully laughing only to face-plant on the trail. Then she'd insist on walking/running some more. It's hard to be little.

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