Travels with Bentley

Travels with Bentley
Bentley - our Heartland Bighorn

Monday, April 25, 2016

Monday-Thursday, April 18-21, 2016 Natural Falls State Park, West Siloam Springs, OK

Monday, April 18, 2016

We are headed south today to Natural Falls State Park in West Siloam Springs, OK.  We left Branson at 10 and arrived at the park about 1:30.  It was a nice drive with wonderful scenery through some beautiful mountains.

It rained a little on the drive down but not too much or too long.

We set up in Site #28.  It was about 66 degrees and cloudy when we arrived.  Our site was pretty level and we were soon set up.  We have water and 50 amp electric at our site.  We had a good Verizon and Dish Network signal.  There is a dump station as we leave the park if we need to use it.  They are calling for rain the next day or so.  This is a beautiful park with many walking paths and trails.  We hope to do a lot of walking while we are here.

Several Escapee members were already here and once we had Bentley set up we took a walk to check out the falls and then to say hello to our fellow Escapee members.  We learned we would caravan to a diner in nearby Kansas, OK for dinner tonight.  We left about 5:00 and were soon seated at Mama's Cafe.  The food was excellent, they offered Senior plates for $5.99-$6.99 for 55 and older, so even I got in on the reduced rate.  Yea!  We had a chance to visit quite a bit by the time they served all of us. Our camping neighbors here in the park, Keith & Drena, rode with us and we enjoyed getting to know them better.  They just recently joined our club and they also have a brand new Cedar Creek 5th Wheel that they allowed us tour.  It is really beautiful.  The additional four feet would be nice to have but overall we really have all we need in Bentley.

Once we returned Vern and Dee soon had a campfire going.  We enjoyed sitting out under the stars and I was able to get a great group picture.  It's not often I set out side at night where I can enjoy the moon and stars.  It was nice.

Vern in the yellow jacket, with his neighbor Dee standing beside him.  They built our fire.  We have more campers coming in tomorrow.

We turned in about 9:30 or so.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Dean and I were up early to take advantage of the walking trails.

It seems by the time we walk, eat breakfast and then do a few things around the RV it's getting close to noon.  We had several other members come in today.  The park has a very nice meeting room and now that we have over 10 here we can use it at no charge.  There are a total of 21 of us.  Tonight we will have a potluck dinner, so after we got our chores done for the day we headed to Siloam Springs, AR to pick up a few things at Wal-Mart.  I made corn dip, Mexican chicken and apple crisp.  I saved the apple crisp for tomorrow night.  After lunch we walked some more and then rested until time to have our potluck meal.  We had LOTS of great food and desserts.
From Left to Right:  Keith, Carolyn & Raymond, Drena

L to R:  Vern & Joanne, and Yvette & Mike

L to R:  Sally & Steve, Alvin, Christine

L to R:  Dee & Shiela, Dean & Carol 

Carolyn, Connie & Gary

Me & Dean

Dessert table

Our Potluck Dinner
Afterwards, we played Hand and Foot.  There were 8 of us, with 4 at 2 tables.  We had a great time.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

We took our morning walk this morning to the spring.

Entrance to Dripping Springs

It is really dry here so very little water.

This is the upper bridge that takes you on the trail around Dripping Springs.

This is platform is ADA accessible for wheelchairs to where you can see the falls below.  The bridge leads up to the upper viewing area.

Picture taken from the lower bridge shown below.

This bridge is at the bottom.

When we returned we got around for a group breakfast at 10 am, with biscuits and gravy, scrambled eggs, sausage and bacon, fruit, bagels, muffins, etc.  It was great.

We walked again today, a couple of different times.  After lunch 4 of us women went to the meeting room to play hand and foot again.  I sure enjoy that game and look forward to having the opportunity to play it.
The park has a nice meeting room with a small kitchen and restroom facilities.  We made good use of it this week.
Tonight we brought our leftovers back for dinner at the meeting room.  It was just as good the second time around as it was the night before.  I included the apple crisp at this meal.

Tonight we had another campfire and I visited with one of our members who joined last fall in Grove. She and her husband used to full-time.  While workcamping in Arkansas they found a place they liked and have now settled there.  I enjoyed visiting with her about their travels, etc.

Christine fanning the fire!

Here are some more pictures from the campfire.  Tonight we made smores.  We turned in about 9:30 or so.  It has been a lot of fun so far this week.

Carol supplied the makings for smores.  She's busy making hers.

Enjoying the final product.  They were sure good!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

After our morning walk, we had to make our own breakfast today.  :)  We had lunch and then we walked some more.  This afternoon we walked around the small lake below the springs.

This is the Dripping Springs Trail that takes you down 49 steps to the base of the falls.

Some of those STEEP steps to the base of the falls.

No steps, but downhill at the same incline.

More steps down.

Had to take a selfie at the base of the falls.

This is the trail along the small lake made by the falls.

Bridge over the small lake.

Walking alongside the lake 

Backside of the lake where it falls to a stream.
This was a DIFFICULT walk uphill.  It is worse than climbing back up the hill at the park in Oswego!

WOW!  I had to stop and rest a couple of times going up that steep hill!  After that we walked the Ghost Coon Trail.  It wasn't as bad as the one around the lake but it was still a workout.  Tonight we are going to cook hot dogs or hamburgers at our campfire.  Dean and I went back to Wal-mart to get hot dogs and a roasting stick.  When we got back I made some no-bake cookies to take as well.  The hot dogs were good and one of the ladies made an angel food cake, with fresh strawberries and whipped cream.  It was delicious.  We set around the campfire again this evening.  Our last night before we all head out.
I forgot to take pictures at tonight's campout, but here is the table decoration that Vern and Dee made for us!

We had such a great time and really enjoyed visiting with all of our Escapee friends.  We missed those who could not attend, but hope to meet up with them sometime during the year.

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