Monday, April 8, 2013

Bull Run Regional Park Trip, Manassas, VA

When? April 6-7, 2013
Where? Bull Run Regional Park, Manassas, VA
Cost? $37/night (Jurisdiction prices)
Hookups? Full (Hookups were a little weird at this one)
Type? Back-in (They have pull-thrus, we just didn't)
Site #? 106
Check in? 1pm
Check out? 11am
Characters? Heather & Jon
Weather? Warming up... slowly. 50s/60s during the day, 40s at night

Pretty last minute (for us anyhow) last week we decided to take a quick trip to dewinterize the trailer. The weather here in NoVA has left a LOT to be desired recently, so we were excited to get out with some nice weather.

We decided on Bull Run Regional Park, here in NoVA. It's not terribly far from our house - or our trailer storage, so that's always good. Unfortunately, we could only go for one night. Hopefully we'll get back there later this year for a little longer.

Since the last camping trip, we got our trailer registered, got the VA license plate, and got it inspected. We had to pick up the inspection paperwork from our storage area (who did it for us). There was a small problem and the paper was temporarily missing. Thankfully, they found it and all was well. We still had a few things at the house that were trailer specific that needed to come with us on this trip. We're hoping that the next trip we have even less "trailer stuff" to bring so that we can just start bringing clothes, outdoor gear, propane, the battery, and GO!

This little guy is parked about 5 spots from us at our storage lot. He's actually smaller than we are... and so cute!
We hooked up and got ready to head out. We're definitely getting better at this. Jon's been teaching me a little more and more of how to hook up myself too, so it's still taking a little longer than we think it should, but we'll get faster.

The drive over was nice an easy (even from a passenger perspective). Jon did really well this trip. No white knuckles! The worst part of the drive was the last 5 miles or so of tight, twisty, side roads.

We entered the park and made our way to the campground. I will say that the staff here is awesome. They made sure we were comfortable backing in and let me know where all of the hookups were. Since they weren't full that night, she gave me an alternative site if we found the first one didn't work for us. In hindsight, we should've taken the alternative one just because the hookups were all on one side. But, it's all good!

All backed in
After we got set up (and I got the inside taken care of), we took a walk around the campgrounds. It's a nice area - pretty large campsite for a regional park.

New Thirty-one products for additional storage under the bed and on the bedside "tables". Love this pattern.

Straight out of the 90s
Towing their SMART car. Loved their set-up.
Group site
Playground for the kids
After our walk, we headed back to the registration building, got firewood, went back to the campsite, and started our fire. We decided to heat up our baked potatoes (dinner) around the fire.

Day 1 Real Food Challenge dinner - even camping! Baked potato, chicken, salsa, sour cream, cheese (for Jon) with salad and ranch dip (homemade).

Sometime while dinner was heating up, Jon went into the trailer to change out the shower head/hose.

After dinner, we sat by the fire for a bit longer and just chilled. At some point, I got too cold, so I went back in. I decided to take a shower. I'm glad Jon decided to come in and check to see how I was doing because apparently, I was leaking water all over the place! Oops! He cleaned up the mess and I explained what was going on. We thought we could get away with not replacing the shower head holder, but I don't think that's going to be possible.

After Jon put out the camp fire, he came in to take his shower. He definitely saw what I was having problems with (it was just super high). After the shower, we settled in for a movie to test out the tv that we installed... except the radio/dvd player wasn't working! After a quick google, we determined that it might be a blown fuse... it was. We managed to replace it and get everything working.

Once we got it working again, we put on Wreck it Ralph!, had a snack, and then curled up in bed. We're hoping this is the last trip of the spring that we need to use the heater for. It dropped down into the 30s overnight, so it was pretty chilly. We were smarter than last trip and pulled the curtain in front of the bed so that we wouldn't be beamed with light at 6:30am. Camping does not equal sleeping in, that's for sure!

As we packed up on Sunday morning, we noticed the campground was still really quiet - even though it was about 9:30. I will say, it was nice to be able to relax & enjoy the quiet morning. We got everything packed up & were going to dump at the campsite. The sewer connector was on the other side of the trailer though, so we needed to scoot up & run the line behind the trailer. This meant that the truck was hanging out in the middle of the road. Well, trying to do this around check-out on a Sunday wasn't really happening, so we ended up dumping at the dump station instead. Now that we know how easy that is, we may consider water + electric sites! Hardest part is probably hooking everything back up to go dump.

Jon towed back without too many issues. We did have one small tiff about which lane he should be in (and when to use the blinkers), but all in all, towing's getting a little better. We backed in to our space, unhooked, chocked, put the tire covers on, and said adieu. Until next time Lil Lance!

(PS - we need a name for the Lil Lance)

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Spring is finally here!

In fact, after tonight Northern Virginia should no longer dip below freezing for the duration of the Spring and Summer months. The Mid-Atlantic has been seeing regular dips below freezing all through March and even now into April, which is very unusual. We also experienced our windiest March in over 30 years, which did not make for good trailer towing conditions. Happy to finally give Old Man Winter the boot this coming weekend!

That said, Heather and I are getting the itch and are thinking about de-winterizing the Lance and taking it out this weekend. We plan to leave it de-winterized for the rest of the camping season.
Plus a set of new organizational strategies that Heather wants to try out (I'm getting this impression that re-organizing the camper storage areas will continue for quite some time :)). Should make for a fun weekend. I'll post experiences with the new toys in a trip report when we get back.

One last thing: this trip will mark our first back-in camping site, so wish us luck!