A few weeks ago Rob and I decided to to go camping down South for the weekend. We both took Friday off work so we could have a full three-day weekend to spend some time outside camping, hiking, and exploring. We had wanted to camp a lot this summer, but the summer just flew by and now winter is fast approaching! Our plan was to make it to Kanarraville Thursday night and then camp at the RV Park there, but we got a later start then we had hoped to on Thursday afternoon and we hit rush hour traffic as we were heading out. It got dark quickly into our drive, so around 8 or so I suggested that we pull off at the next campground we saw and check if they had any campsites available. Luckily for us, the next campground we found was Yuba State Park.
Even though it wasn’t very late, it was already pretty dark when we pulled in to check out the campground. As we drove around we found that there were two available tent sites near the lake, so we quickly parked and set up our tent at site 21. The bathrooms/showers were conveniently close to our campsite too. It was a nice location, from what little we could see in the night.
There was so little light pollution out where we were, we could see the stars beautifully lighting up the night sky. Because it was so crystal clear, and it didn’t feel too cold, we decided to leave the rain fly off of the tent so that we could stare up at the stars as we went to sleep. The sky was picturesque. We couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful star-filled night; the sky seemed to perfectly capture the title of Vincent Van Gogh’s famous painting “starry night.”
I didn’t sleep very well during the night because it got really cold in our tent and I was freezing most of the night, and our little twin air mattress isn’t exactly made for two people to share; especially when one of those two people is a blanket stealer. 🙂 After not really sleeping most of the night, I decided to get up when I saw a little bit of light starting to illuminate the sky. Since I was awake, I wanted to take advantage of this opportunity to watch the sunrise.
Although I could feel some of the warmth of the sun as its rays danced along the arms and body of my jacket, there was a bitter cold chill that hung in the air. My hands, feet, and nose were as cold as ice. I was so wrapped up in watching the gorgeous colors as they appeared in the sky, I hadn’t even noticed the cold; it wasn’t until Rob crawled out of the tent and grabbed my hand as we were walking down to the edge of the lake that I realized my hands were frozen solid.
Our campsite was in a perfect little spot near the receding lake. As we walked down to the lake we could see that the water level was extremely low; probably 25 feet lower than its normal level. There was a boat ramp on the South end of the lake, but no boats on the lake at that point. The water was also pretty chilly, so if people were going to be boating, it probably wouldn’t have been until later on in the afternoon anyway.
Shortly after we came back from the lake we made hot cocoa and ate a nice hot breakfast. I sat in a strategic spot on the edge of the picnic beach in the sunshine so that the I was being warmed on the outside and the inside; the sun warming my outside and the hot cocoa warming my insides. We finished up breakfast, packed up camp, and headed towards the freeway.
Just as we left the campsite we stopped and got a picture with the Yuba State Park sign. At the beginning of the summer we had decided we want to get to all of the Utah State Parks before we move out of Utah, so we’ve got a lot of work to do over the next two years before Rob graduates from school. Each time we go to a state park we take a picture with that state park sign. Yuba State Park was a perfect stopping point for the first night of our three-day camping adventure, and now we can check one more state park off of our long list!