2017 – Lake Haven Retreat, Indianapolis, Indiana

It’s urban camping, although the small lake does add at least a bit of a camping feeling to the place. Most of the campsites are pull through “back to back” sites. Our neighbor on the driver’s side, then, was very close. On the other side there’s a strip of grass that is shared with the folks on that side. Again, we were in town for the convention, so having a level site with good utilities (including WiFi) worked for us.

Arriving at the campground might be a bit confusing. Arriving on Hwy 37 one turns onto Edgewood. The very first driveway is for the campground even though it looks as if it’s just a house. That house is the office. Beside the office is the laundry and showers. This makes them pretty much equally unhandy for most everyone. Just past the driveway for the campground is a fire station. We could hear the trucks going out once in a while, but I think they must delay the sirens till they are down the street a ways because they weren’t ever a big issue for us.

The campground has several long term residents, evident by the big propane bottles. However, everything is kept reasonably neat and orderly. We paid a bit more than we usually pay, but again, this campground is all about location.

If you need a spot in Indy, especially on the south side or near downtown, this campground is likely your best bet.

Click this for full screen photos

2017 – Pla-Mor Campground, Bremen, Indiana

One reason for the full campground over our weekend here was a Civil War reenactment group. They pitched tents and set up camps reflective of that era. Their biggest draw was a couple of cannons. Everyone enjoyed their demonstrations, especially the night fire on Saturday night.

This is not only Amish country, but is also RV country. The Numar factory and other RV industry related businesses are just a few minutes away in nearby Nappanee.

We liked Pla-Mor and would return for a future visit.

Click this for full screen photos

2017 – Sightseeing Indiana Amish Country

Right off let me say that there’s a lot more to this area than we saw. Also, we enjoyed just driving around the area, looking at the many Amish farms and small school houses. These aren’t intended to be “attractions” but they are, indeed, “attractive” and add to the general ambiance of the area.

I found it interesting to see so many horse and buggies traveling the roads or hitched up at various businesses (like Dairy Queen). Also, as we drove to church on Sunday morning we passed the Amish farm that was hosting their church services that Sunday. There were several parked horse and buggies as well as a lot of bicycles. Apparently, the various farms in the area take turns hosting worship services followed by a big meal.

Click this for full screen photos

2017 Project: Bigfoot Leveling System

We really like our Hitchhiker II LS 5th wheel. However, we’re missing a few extras that the newer rigs have. A couple of months ago we decided that for the foreseeable future we’d like to make a few upgrades and keep our current 5th wheel. The biggest upgrade for us was adding a power leveling system. We found that the Bigfoot Leveling System by Quadra was highly regarded by most everyone. This is a powerful hydraulic system. They make a fully automatic system – just push the button and it figures out what is level by itself. We opted to save nearly $900 and install a single pump, manual, four jack system. With this system you have a remote control and using the bubble levels already mounted on the camper you level the camper. The guys at the factory told me our 5th wheel was a bigger project than many and it took a day and a half to do the install. The good folks at Quadra were nothing but helpful and professional. They even let us sleep in the camper while it was parked overnight inside their facility. This is a new system for us, but we found ourselves on a rather un-level site our first night out with it. It took just a minute or so to bring the camper perfectly level. Jackie and I were both all smiles watching it work!

Click this for full screen photos

2017 – Johnny Appleseed Campground, Fort Wayne, IN

Our stay in Johnny Appleseed Campground in Fort Wayne, Indiana has been a pleasant one. The campground is named in honor of John Chapman who was better known as Johnny Appleseed, the frontiersman, preacher, humanitarian, and nurseryman who introduced apple trees to this region of our nation. He lived his later years out in Fort Wayne and is buried near what is now a park and campground named in his honor. This campground gets high marks from most everyone and that now includes us. The park has lots of shady water/electric sites near the St. Joseph River. The strip of land between the campground and the River boasts a large dog park and playground and the street is busy with joggers, bicyclists, and others who come to enjoy the area. The campground has a very nice and clean shower house and laundry room which has a dump station beside it. For those who are staying longer there’s a “honey wagon service” for a reasonable $10. The sites are a mixed bag – some that will only accommodate smaller rigs. You may want to bring an extra water hose along because many of the sites share a water spigot which is equally unhandy to everyone. Having said that, we could have fit into most of the sites. The one we were given was one of three sites that backs in directly off the city street. Frankly, I think our site is probably the best one in the place! Before I close out my review, I have to tell you the name of that street. No, it isn’t “Johnny Appleseed” street. Rather, it is named for a beloved Fort Wayne mayor of the past who proudly embraced his name and used it to his advantage in political campaigns. His name was Harry Baals and, yes, it’s pronounced with one “a” and two “l’s.”

Click this for full screen photos

2017 – Southwestern Ohio Sightseeing

Being as close to the Museum of the Air Force in Dayton as we were Scott couldn’t resist making another visit. A new section has been added since our last visit so we made a bee line to it. We focused on just that hanger and one other rather than trying to see the entire place – an exhausting effort! We especially enjoyed seeing the Presidential planes as well as many experimental, one-of-a-kind planes. We did an earlier review of the Museum here.

Click this for full screen photos

2017 – Campground Review: Wilmington, OH Thousand Trails

One big change to the campground since our last visit was a complete remodel of the pool area. It looks very good and got a lot of use on its opening day weekend.

We made some new friends, most of whom happen to seasonal site holders. We also enjoyed getting to know some previously Facebook only friends: David and Judy Evans who came in during our second week here.

One disappointment to us was our visit to the nearby gas station/convenience store where we had enjoyed soft serve chocolate ice cream on our previous visits. They no longer have soft serve. We were rather bummed out about that!

All in all, while we’d rather be out exploring new places, we’ve enjoyed our third stay here and rank Wilmington Thousand Trails in the top third of the Thousand Trails we’ve visited.

Click this for full screen photos