Saturday, January 1, 2011

Lake Livingston State Park


View Larger Map

Look Vince!  I learned how to add maps!



I brought in the new year on a camping trip with my outdoor group at Lake Livingston State Park.  We rented screened shelters beside the lake.  I spent the night in the loft of one of them.  It was not enclosed by actual walls, so if I had not snuggled into 2 sleeping bags layered together, the cold wind would probably have made me miserable.  In the winter, I take a lightweight fleece bag and stuff it inside a regular sleeping bag which is rated to 50 degrees.  I find layers to be much cozier and warmer than any one bag.  There was a guy sleeping on the floor below me in one cold weather bag and he said he felt the wind.  I don't think he was as comfortable as I was.  A tarp could probably be rigged to help block some of the wind.  During the summer months, there would be plenty of room for an air mattress in the loft and the breeze might be more welcome.  There is electricity in the shelters.           


Most people opted to set up tents.  Eight people are allowed per site whether they sleep inside or out.  We used three sites, one for gathering and eating, two for sleeping, and everyone pitched their tents at shelter site 4 because it had plenty of relatively flat ground suitable for camping.  


We had a potluck dinner.  Every time I car camp with BCO there is more food than we could possibly eat.  I brought tamales, but didn't even bring them out until breakfast because there was too much food.  It was BYOB, but people brought plenty of that to share as well.  Consumption of alcohol is not allowed in public areas of Texas state parks.  (Interiors of shelters, cabins, tents, and campers are not public areas.)  As long as we keep it in our campsite and don't get too rowdy, we never have a problem.     


In the morning, we went on a ranger-led hike.  I learned a few bits of useful information.  This is palmetto.  Any place you see these is not a good place to pitch your tent.  Palmettos thrive in areas where standing water collects.  If you are camped next to these and it rains, you're getting wet.


This is poison ivy.  "Leaves of three, let it be."  You don't want to touch this one.  The middle leaf is symmetrical, while the other 2 leaves are smooth on the inside edge and have pointy lobes on the outside.


We did a little geocaching and I tried to get video with my new Flip Mino HD, but I mostly got footage of the ground and people's behinds.  I'll see what I can do with the editing software...         

10 comments:

Kelly said...

You know, I don't think I ever realized that the outer poison ivy leaves were smooth on the inside and only lobed on the outside! Now maybe I'll finally recognize it when I see it!

Glad you had a fun camping trip.

Oilfield Trash said...

I have not been to that park, but I have swam in the lake there as a friend of mine owns a lake house there.

Tempo said...

I have a great bag rated -5 but it's so hot you cant use it unless it's bloody freezing...not much use in Oz. Luckily we don't have your Ivy, poor us...we only get Red Backs and Brown Snakes. It sounds like a good trip, half your luck.

gayle said...

Glad you had a wonderful time! We haven't camped in years! I would like to take my grandson sometime this spring.

Jen said...

@Kelly: I wasn't sure exactly what it looked like, either. I tried to avoid everything that had three leaves.

@Oilfiled Trash: You've probably drank the water from the lake, too. We learned it supplies water to Houston, so DON"T PEE IN THE LAKE!

@Tempo: I don't know where I'd use a bag rated -5, either. I don't think I want to camp where it's that cold.

@gayle: Take him! If I'd taken my daughter when she was younger, she might be more willing to go now. I waited too long...

grannybunny said...

Glad you're back to camping and geocaching; they're healthy activities and fun to read about. Thanks!

Jen said...

@grannybunny: I have several more trips already planned. I intend to do more of it this year...and blog more about it. Thanks for the encouragement.

AmyLK said...

Sounds like it was a very fun trip!

Oilfield Trash said...

Now just because my name on here has trash in it does not mean that I pee in lakes. lol

Jen said...

@AmyLK: It was. BCO is a fun group. I'm planning to hang out with them a lot more this year.

Post a Comment