When we started camping we set a rule: we were not going to camp anywhere that we could easily drive home. We live one mile from a National Wildlife Refuge that has four campgrounds. Already planned activities around home caused us to break our rule and Camp Local.
We found a great site at Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge on Crab Orchard Lake in the ‘E’ loop overlooking the water, with water and electric, for $20 per night. Some of the sites offer sewer as well for $25, electric only sites are $15 and primitive are $10. The sites were gravel but huge and beautiful, each with a picnic table and fire pit. The bathhouses were fine. The campground offers three campsite loops; there was previously five, but two were destroyed in the May 8, 2009 derecho and were not repaired. An eagle has nested in one of the loops and is closed to all access.
Our local camping trip was very relaxing. We had campfires, fished, walked and ran, cooked outside, watched the stars, and slept in. Plus we were able to attend Mitchell’s soccer game and Easter events with family.
We really enjoyed local camping and plan to do the same next weekend when we are also unable to travel out of town. It’s safe to say our rule is broken and we are no longer enforcing our non local camping rule.
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Shane and Jessica
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