Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pokagon State Park

Good morning.
Trip 12 details.
Like I said, this trip took us to Pokagon State Park. We haven't been to this park before. It's a beautiful park in the rolling hills of northern Indiana on lake James.
Here's a pick of what looked to be a low bridge in the park on the way to the campground.
But it was plenty high enough. :-)
And here's our mo-ho at an end site lined up with others from our group.
We arrived Friday afternoon around 3pm. They have just one water fill station for the entire campground, so it was a while before we got to our site. It was a nice pull-thru, with 50 amp service. Just gravel, but level. Actually, the half dozen pull-thru sites looked to be the only level sites in the entire campground. It was that rolling. But made for a scenic setting.
Our camping club ended up with about 16 sites with nearly 30 people, all near each other. We set up camp and stopped now and then to chat with new arrivals. We then fixed beverages and walked around and visited with other group members. For dinner, I cooked sirloin steaks on the grill with baked potatoes and marinated grilled zucchini. Craig loves this zucchini on the grill!
Then we joined other campers for the group campfire. It was a nice cool evening. We retired to our mo-ho later and watched a DVD, Hangover. If you haven't seen it yet, do. It's hilarious! Saturday morning, we went for a coffee walk. It was quite cool, 46 degrees. But the coffee kept us warm. Then as the sun helped to warm us, I fixed bacon and eggs on the grill. Then it was out of the campground to get a newspaper, and a ladle for the chili we were to make. I thought we had a ladle in the mo-ho, but we didn't. They have an outlet mall just a few miles north of the campground just off highway 80-90. We found one there.Then back to the campground where we read the paper, and started the chili.
Our chili's special ingredient is Mr Hogg's chili seasoning. We discovered it up in Sutton's Bay, in northern lower Michigan, one trip. We thought it was the best chili ever!
Anyway, Craig added 3 lbs ground sirloin, diced onions, diced green peppers, diced tomatoes, beef broth, tomato sauce, brown sugar, and pinto beans. So following directions, it takes about 2 hours to get it ready to go into the crock pot, and simmer for another 5 hours.
After it was in the crock pot, we went for a bike ride. It was exhausting! We biked through 3 of the campgrounds and all the hills about did us in. I guess we're not in as good a shape as I thought! :-)
We then tried to get a station on TV to see how our Spartans were doing against Illinois. Couldn't find anything, so we tried the mo-ho radio, just local games. Then we tried the car. The one station we normally get was very static, so we decided to drive out of the campground to higher ground. That worked! The score, with 6 minutes left in the game was our Spartans 19, Illinois 6. So we parked in a lot to listen to the rest of the game. It was good! The Spartans won, 26-6. They are now 7-0. The first time they've started that good since 1965!
Soooo anyway.....
Back at the campground, we fixed beverages, and wandered the campsites chatting with other campers in the group. Then it was time to help set up the large tent we'd use for the group dinner. It was breezy, and cool, and the tent would help keep us warm. Then back to our mo-ho, for final chili preparations.
At 6pm sharp, the chili cook-off began. There were 7 entries. Each was assigned a number for voting purposes. Others brought cornbread, homemade croutons, cheese and such to complement the chili, and others brought deserts. It was a large spread. We spent a good deal of time trying all the different chili's. I thought ours was the tastiest and voted as such.
When the voting was over, the group hosts, counted the ballots and #2 won!
But I was number 4.......
#2 was pretty good, but it had large pieces of stewed tomatoes, ick. What were these people thinking? Don't they have any freaking taste buds? I was gonna demand a recount! LoL
And to make matters worst! Craig informed me he voted for #1. I said WHAT! You freakin traitor! He said he didn't want to win, then he'd get the Chili Bowl Trophy and be committed to bringing it back for next years Chili cook-off. Sometimes, he is such a dufus!
Oh well, there was lot's of good chili and food, and it was all in good fun. I was curious as to where we did come in with the voting, but decided it was better not knowing. That's why there are so many chili recipes out there. Every one has different tastes. I was just camping with a bunch of people with no taste, and one dufus. ;-)
So then it was time for a large group campfire, where we chatted and enjoyed the warmth. Tired from the long busy day, we retired to out mo-ho around 10pm for a very restful sleep.
Sunday, another cold morning. While Craig slept in, I went for a walk around the campground, and then back to the site of the chili cook-off, to get our table cloth we brought over for one of the tables where we ate. Met up with a few other early risers and visited until it was time to take my shower and wake up Craig. I made us our walking coffee, and we walked and visited with other campers. Some one decided to take the eating tent down after the dew dried and we agreed to meet back there at 11:30 to help. So that gave us time to head out and get a paper to read about the Spartans victory the day before. We returned to the campground at 10:45 and read the paper. At 11:20 I looked out and saw the tent gone. Apparently some of them went ahead and took it down early. Saved us some work! :-)
Since we didn't have breakfast, we decided to go into the near-by town of Angola. It's a neat old town. They have a large circle right in the middle of their downtown with a monument in the middle. The few restaurants there weren't open due to it being Sunday I guess, so we went out on the strip where Meijer and Walmart were. We settled on Buffalo Wild Wings. This place definitely caters to a young male crowd. There must have been 50 TVs, and they were everywhere you looked showing numerous different sporting events. And all the waitresses were cute young girls. The place was actually quite busy for a Sunday at 12:30. We split the fried dill pickles and chicken quesadillas. Very tasty. Back at the campground, we said our goodbyes to the members leaving. We found that there were to be 7 of us there for Sunday night. Our site, somehow, ended up being the gathering place for the afternoon as people came and went. We spent most of that time between chatting, breaking down our site for an easy morning departure. Loaded the car on the kaddy, took down the awning lights, rolled up the awning, and put away the carpet. We started a fire around 6 as it was getting quite cool after a sunny day near 65. We had pork steaks on the grill with a baked potato and grilled asparagus. It was good. We spent the rest of the evening chatting and enjoying the warmth of the fire. We all said our good nights around 10, and we enjoyed another restful sleep in our warm cozy mo-ho.
Monday morning, I woke up Craig around 8:15. Made us coffee, and we made our rounds to say our goodbyes. We finished putting away the rest of the things, and prepared for our departure. We left around 9:30, and with our stop at Flying J near home to gas up and do a second flush of the holding tanks, arrived home around noon.
This was the only trip this year with this camping group. When we put together our camping schedule last February, this was the only date that matched. Next year, we'll try to do more. These are a great bunch of people. So, another great trip, especially with no incidences!
And with the days getting colder, we realize the camping season is nearly over. But we do have one more.......

4 comments:

  1. Sounds like a fun time.

    "That's why there are so many chili recipes out there. Every one has different tastes. I was just camping with a bunch of people with no taste, and one dufus. ;-)"

    LOL!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ah, hahahahaha!!!!!!! dufus... ;)

    Didn't know you belonged to a camping club. Sounds like they did you guys a good trip!
    Sorry your chili didn't win, but I think Craig had an understandable reason. Maybe he wants to be somewhere else this time next year. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous9:59 AM

    I am looking for Mr. Hogg's green chili mix. So far I have found out they are not making it anymore, but, I know someone out there must have a stash they wouldn't mind selling. If you know where to get this, please please let us know. It has been one of the best green chili recipies we have ever had!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Anonymous10:01 AM

    Sorry, I didn't provide an email address. Here it is

    badmojomn@juno.com
    Jen and James, MN

    ReplyDelete

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