March 3, 2009

Cedar Hill State Park

On Saturday, February 21st, we turned our adventuring eyes to our backyard (not literally, although the thought has crossed our mind). We drove about 30 minutes southwest of Garland to Cedar Hill, TX near I-20 and 67, just outside of Dallas city limit but still within the metroplex.

Cedar Hill State Park sits right on Joe Pool Lake. As usual, our camping trip was just an over-nighter. The wind was blowing very strong that evening right over the lake, further magnifying the cold. Our first camp site (#53) was right on the water in the Shady Ridge Camping Area and directly in the path of the strong wind. After about 5 minutes we realized that this was not going to do for the entire evening. So, we relocated to the Eagle Ford Camping Area (camp site #95) which was further inland -- much better.

The highlight of the evening was our dinner. This should be no surprise as most of our camping adventures include a noteworthy meal. This time we decided to keep things simple. We made baked potatoes with butter and sour cream and bacon cheeseburgers. We must say it was one of the better bacon cheeseburgers that we have ever made. Food always tastes better cooked over a wood fire.

It was a cold night. As a matter of fact, when we woke up around 7:30 am, it was still 27 degrees outside. We do not know exactly how cold it got overnight, but you can imagine...Fortunately, both of our sleeping bags are rated for -5 degrees. As long as we were in our bags, we were fairly cozy. Our dogs were probably a little uncomfortable in the cold, but we let them cuddle up close to us on the air mattress. At one point, Joe shared his covers with Bronte, who seemed to have trouble settling in.

The next morning, we got the fire going again and heated up some sausage, egg, and cheese taquitos that Kristi had pre-made. It was a simple, quick, and delicious meal given us the fuel we would need for a morning of hiking.
First things first, we packed up all of our gear and cleaned up our site. Then we set out in our car to the south side of the State Park where the hiking trails were -- specifically the Duck Pond Trail (sadly no ducks were in the pond on this particular day). We both agree that our favorite part of this camp trip was the hiking.

We spent about two hours Saturday morning (from about 10:00 to noon) hiking around various state park trails. Our ultimate goal was to reach the "scenic overview" located a the top of one of hills that we hiked up. The view was very nice, but the nature along the way was equally good. We really look forward to returning to Cedar Hill so that we can check out more of the trails.

In checking out the Cedar Hill State Park slide show (to the right), you will notice many scenic and nature pictures. Regretfully, we did not do it justice. In the spring, with the trees and vegetation in blossom, it must be breathtaking. We look forward to returning for some more kodak moments. We also took a lot of pictures of the many facilities at Cedar Hill State Park. On of the best features of this park is the many "day use" opportunities -- fishing, picnicking, swimming, boating. We tried to share some of this via our photos.