Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Holliday Lake State Park - (05/27-05/30)

 Friday, May 27th


The North Pole (campers name) pulled out on her maiden voyage around 2:40 on Friday afternoon. We were both excited about the trip and our new camper. Our trip took about 2 hours and 10 minutes with only one minor hiccup. We stopped for a break at an Exxon just past Altavista and I had to move our camper to be out of the way of traffic. I forgot that our camper is wider than our truck and nearly brushed the driver's side into a metal dumpster. I fortunately did not, and hopefully will not make that mistake again.


We arrived at camp and followed our checklist and setup. It had been raining here all during the day and another storm could be heard coming in, so our first setup in our new camper was not in ideal conditions. Also, the site was fairly difficult to back into, and we later learned why (see notes at bottom on campground). Here are a few things we learned during our setup and yes we are still rookies at this.
  • The wheel chock for the Anderson Leveler needs to be driven well to be stable. 
  • The hard plastic leveler does not get good traction on wet asphalt.
  • Do NOT hop on the fender to pop the hitch, the trailer will hop, fortunately no one was hurt.
  • Only use foot on jack if putting on bare ground, remove it if using block.
  • Be more detailed with your partner about what you need them to keep an eye on when backing in so that there are no mistakes. Your partner cannot read your mind!!
  • We need to have a variety of blocks for the jack, not just one size. I suggest the following: 
    • 2 - 2x6 blocks
    • 1 - 4x4 block
    • 1 - 6x6 block
After we set up the camper, I set up the kitchen to get supper started. I had just finished when the bottom fell out of the storm we had heard coming for a while. We had cedar plank salmon and broccoli with brownie for dessert. We read some after supper and waited for the rain to subside, which it did in about an hour. 

After the rain, I was able to hang our outdoor lights, and we walked the campground before going to bed.

Saturday, May 28th


I was up fairly early this morning and made a pot of coffee. It was nearly an hour before I saw anyone else outside, and I enjoyed watching God's handiwork in the quiet stillness of the morning.


Amy arose much later than I did, and that is when I started breakfast. We decided to try an new camp recipe that I had found at Fresh Off The Grid's website.

Avocado Toast Breakfast Sandwich


  • (per sandwich) 1 egg
  • 2 slices of bacon cut in half
  • 2-3 slices of sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 an avocado mashed.


  • Cook bacon in pan (If bacon is pre-cooked, just heat)
  • Toast bread (if using pre-cooked bacon, add butter to pan)
  • Fry your egg to your liking. (you may need to add fat to your pan)
  • While egg is cooking, add mashed avocado to toast and top with bacon and cheese
  • Add egg and last piece of toast
After relaxing around the campsite for a while, we decided to head down to the lake to see what we could get in to. 


We decided to rent a Jon Boat for 4 hours and spend our time on the lake instead of the beach. It has been a long time since I have steered a boat, but I did okay. 


I decided to try a little fishing, and Amy got some sun while reading a Magnolia magazine. I used to fish quite a bit with my grandfather, and this brought back a lot of memories of those times. I still remember the day Dad took me to JCPenney's in Ballou Park to purchase me my first Mitchell 300 fishing reel and rod. That is what you see me fishing with in the picture above. We saw many things while on the lake. We observed some turtles sunbathing on some logs. I spotted a snake watching us from the shallow water near the bank. There was a brief shower while we were in the middle of the lake and the clouds were beautiful. 

After we left the lake, be both took a short nap in camp


After our nap, we participated in the "A Stones Throw" activity that Ranger Meggan was presenting. The introduced us to an ancient art of spear-throwing with a modern twist. We enjoyed our efforts to master this art.


After we returned to camp, I started a fire, so we could get started on dinner. We had some fresh potato wedges fried in olive oil and bone-in rib-eye we had purchased from Tom and Myra Keatts and boy was it delicious. 



About an hour after dinner, we decided to try out some new s'more recipes we had heard about. The first was from a good friend, Denise Wyatt. This was a roasted marshmallow in between to soft chocolate chip cookies. We found out you cannot stop at just one. The second was to replace our chocolate bar with a Resse's Peanut Butter Cup. We both enjoyed this one immensely.


At 8:30 we went down to the T-dock and join Ranger Meggan for another of her programs, "Beneath the Surface" She dropped two special lights into the lake, and it attracted several species of fish. We saw tadpoles, minnows, brim, and it was exciting to watch. We even got to see a toad that was making a lot of angry noises at us.

I was able to catch this shot of the lake above the dam just before it got completely dark.

Sunday, May 29th

We both decided, when we were young, to not neglect the Lord's Day even when we were out of town. This Lord's Day we visited with the congregation at New Hope Baptist Church at 6227 Old Courthouse Road, Appomattox, VA. They have an interim pastor, and he started a message on the book of Job. I enjoyed the message, and it reminded me that God is working in our life, even when we are running from what he wants us to do.


After service, we headed for Appomattox Court House and had a picnic lunch before walking the grounds.


The first thing we did was listen to a 30-minute talk from a gentleman by the name of John Richard Dennett (a reenactor). He spent a year after the Civil War, traveling the south interviewing many persons and submitted these articles to his paper. He later used these articles to write a book entitled, The South As It Is


We toured all the open buildings and the grounds. It was a beautiful day, and we enjoyed our afternoon.


For supper this evening, we had marinated fried chicken with vegetables and wedge fries.


We enjoyed our evening around the campfire making s'mores and roasting little smokies. 

The last night of camp is always the happiest and saddest for me. I just start to unwind and enjoy myself, while at the same time I am thinking about packing up the next morning to head back to real life. 

We really enjoyed our stay at Holliday State Park and made some precious memories there. Below are some notes about the park and what you can expect.

Notes about Holliday Lake State Park

  1. If you are in a tent, pop-up or small camper (20' or less) you can camp in most sites, but you may have some difficulty backing in.
  2. If you are in a larger camper, be prepared for some maneuvering in the Redbud Campsites. It is not impossible, but it may present a challenge.
  3. All the Redbud sites are asphalt areas for the camper, while the Laurel Ridge sites are gravel.
  4. The best sites for campers are sites 1 & 2, 18-21, and any in the Laurel Ridge section.
  5. There is a new bath house and individual showers in the Laurel Ridge Section as well.
  6. I highly suggest participation in the activities that are available. They were fun and interesting.