Stephanie and I started the final day of vacation with a morning run. When we realized there was an off-and-on drizzle outside, our enthusiasm increased.
We located a relatively flat area near the Mountain Fork River. This area was completely shaded, and there were plenty of RVs and cabins. We met other folks out walking their dogs and riding bicycles. The gentle rain that gradually increased while we were out had everybody in a good mood, I think.
I even ran a short stretch on somewhat of an abandoned road/trail. It was the most scenic and most remote running I have ever done.
We arrived back at the lodge around 9:00. Now it was a race against the clock to get packed up and out of the lodge by 11am. It turned out that my fears were misplaced and we were pulling out of the driveway at 11:03. Of course, this might have had something to do with Stephanie getting most of our packing & organizing finished the night before. (To borrow a phrase KK used this week – If she ever leaves me, I’m going with her.)
It was disappointing to say goodbye to our lodge, named The Oasis, after so many days. The place had the perfect rustic feel we were looking for. Our group of 9 had plenty of room, including bedrooms and places to sleep.
The Oasis included a gas grill, campfire ring, hot tub and wifi. We put all of these features to good use! We would certainly recommend this cabin to anybody spending a few days at Beavers Bend.
The rest of our party had left earlier to go pick up the boat at the marina. We met them around Noon in the parking lot of Girls Gone Wine and we took off for our next stop – Honobia.
Honobia is known for one thing – the annual Honobia Bigfoot Festival & Conference. The festival has the best slogan ever: If it happens in Honobia it affects the whole world!!!!
After studying the map, we decided to take a road that was not a state highway, as our most direct route from Beavers Bend to Honobia. KK had driven on the road before and said it was pretty good. I assumed it was probably a county road, but it might be better described as a logging road after seeing all of the trucks hauling timber out of the region.
At one point on this road, we got separated from the other vehicle and while driving through the bustling town of Bethel (population estimate: 7), we got lost. By lost, I simply mean we made a wrong turn and had to backtrack. While Stephanie and I thought this was perfectly understandable, the occupants in the other vehicle got a big kick out of this.
We arrived at Honobia with high expectations, but were a little let down. While it is a beautiful area, the only landmark in the town was the small convenience store where the resident Honobians hung out. We stopped and checked it out. The kids found a teeter-totter equipped with tractor seats to sit on.
I should say that throughout this trip, every day our group would make repeated references to Bigfoot. It got to be quite the running joke. KK, who evidently watches a tv show routinely about Bigfoot, preferred to call him “Squatch”. Squatch is obviously a shortened version of Bigfoot’s scientific name, Sasquatch.
We quickly hit the road and made way for Robbers Cave State Park (RCSP). The scenery in this part of the state is very pretty, and I know that we are anxious to get back down to this area.
Once we arrived at RCSP, we found a shady picnic spot and had lunch. A family of large Blue Jays were very interested in us, and one of them flew away with a particularly large chunk of cheese.
We wrapped up our fastest meal of the trip and made the short walk to the Nature Center. They had a nice little collection of animals, both living and not. Much to Scott’s chagrin, the Western Diamondback Rattlesnake in the center was alive.
Stephanie and the girls and I walked down to the lake where they had a very small, very congested, yet very nice swimming area. We are thinking about visiting this park later this summer for some camping so this was a great opportunity to check things out.
At this point, it was time to say out goodbyes. In the shadow of the Nature Center, we did so. Scott & Erin would be heading back to Chandler and KK & PK would be going on back to Stillwater.
After they hit the road, we explored more of the park. I mistook the symbol for the amphitheatre on the park map for a wifi hotspot. Perhaps I had that on my mind, because earlier we had seen a group of teenage girls going crazy because they could not get reception with their phones. We agreed this was a First World Problem.
We continued to drive around and found the camping areas. We drove through the area several times making notes on which spots we preferred. Before we left the park, we stopped at the office and made a reservation for our favorite spots. Neither Stephanie nor I could understand their reservation system. They could not guarantee us our # 1 choice, but if we gave them 3 or 4 spots, they would guarantee we received one of those spots. We think it might be a way to make sure favorite, repeat customers get the prime locations.
From Robbers Cave, it was less than a two hour drive back home. We stopped at Braum’s in Broken Arrow and bought the kids double dip ice cream cones for dinner. Yes, we are ending this vacation on a high note.
In preparation for this trip, we had purchased over 100 bottles of water, and we managed to drink most of them. Stephanie, being the recycling queen of the family, was not about to just to throw these in the trash back at the lodge. She meticulously kept a pile of them throughout our stay and we hauled garbage bags full of these water bottles and aluminum cans back home in our new hardtop cargo box on top of the van. This was not exactly the purpose I envisioned when we purchased the cargo box.
Another fun time with family comes to an end. I want to give a big Thank You to Erin’s parents, Don & Debbie, for loaning us the use of their boat for this trip. The water skiing was Miles and Mallory’s favorite part of the trip.
Thank you to Brian and Jerry for being our expert trout fishing guides. We didn’t catch any fish, but we had a great time and got to see some great scenery. Thanks for getting up early to spend the morning with us.
And of course, many thanks to Mom and Dad for everything over the course of our five day vacation. You set the perfect expectations for this trip – rest & relaxation. Beavers Bend was a gorgeous destination – so glad you suggested it!