After exploring Kings Canyon National Park, we drove to the Lodgepole campsite. Upon arrival we stopped at the Lodgepole Visitor Center. We watched a short movie about the history of black bears in the park. After seeing footage of bears breaking into cars, we were thoroughly convinced about the necessity of using the bear boxes to store our food at the campsite.
The kids found this “walking stick” at the campsite, which fits perfectly into the groove on the left of the rock that they are sitting on. They named the rock the “king’s chair”.
Our campsite was #96, which was perfect for us, in that it was close to the bathroom, and the parking space was right next to the campsite. We were also a bit isolated from our neighbors, which was a good things since our kids get loud. I don’t think I ever heard a peep from our neighbors, who were all nestled below, along the riverbank. It was nice to hear the soft gurgling of the river throughout the day and night.
This was the bathroom. Throughout our stay, D and I only encountered one person one time in the bathroom, which was nice.
For the first time in a long time, we built a fire instead of using our stove. The kids had fun collecting firewood around our campsite, which is allowed here. The fire was dying by the time I took this picture, but we got it going again later.
It was one of the prettier campsites we have stayed at.
With a fire, s’mores are a must.
This guy visited our campsite once the food was out.
Standing tall like trees.
The view from inside our tent.
We took a short stroll to the river after dinner. The water level was quite low, as you can tell.
Taking a quick dip. They said the water was cold, and I took their word for it.
The sunset was largely blocked by the trees, but was still pretty. The stars were really bright, too.
We went to the ranger talk at the Lodgepole amphitheater which started at 8 p.m. The talk was given by Ranger Jean Paul, who shared all about his interest, nay obsession, with Peregrine Falcons and Golden Eagles. His interest in the falcons began when he read “My Side of the Mountain” as a youth. I always admire people who are so interested in something that they become experts on the topic. However, once his talk began getting close to an hour, I knew we would have to leave early. The kids were getting tired, and I was actually surprised they had lasted that long. I didn’t want to be rude, but a few other people had already left, so we left too. We ended up seeing Jean Paul at two other different places on Saturday, which was kind of funny.