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Sunday, September 19, 2010

CAMPING - Richardson Lake in the Nicolet National Forest

After our stop at the cheese store on Friday evening, we made our way up to Richardson Lake.

Here is a link to the website:

There are 26 sites here in this rustic campground, and the rate is $12 a night.  We had driven through here before, but never camped here yet.  So we marked all of the sites we can fit on in our handy dandy Nicolet - Chequamegon National Forest campground book, they don't have campground maps on their website.

We chose site number 8... but had a little bit of a tough time making the corner into the campsite ---(remember these campgrounds were made in the 50's and 60's when you only had a tent or a small popup)
So we had to gently remove the wooden sign post to make the curve, and then replace it once we got in!

But the campsite is a *winner* once we got in and settled! 

I love being surrounded by the big trees and seeing the sun dappled patterns on the ground when the breezes blow through the trees.  Our solar panels still charge up, seeing as we have four panels up there, each one catches some sunlight at any given time.  Each day we are fully charged back up again anyhow.

There are three other campers here, and we are located away from any of them so we can't even see them through the trees.  We set up and got comfy in our weekend site.  It's so great to change our view each weekend.  Folks with a cottage got the same view time after time, and have all that upkeep to take care of on the weekends.  I sure like having a *moving cottage* for our weekend getaways!

We decided to cook up a few of Steveio's natural casing wieners for a treat for supper, and I had made some tuna noodle salad earlier in the day to take along.  Quick easy meal and I didn't even take pics----

We had time for one good long walk around the park before darkness fell.  In September, before Daylight's Saving Time change,  it's already dark by 7pm.  We had both been up since 4:30, so it was time to head into bed and make it an early night.  I think we were bed by 8 and I was asleep shortly after 9 and don't remember a thing about the nightly news on the tv.    Steve has our inverter wired into a big timer so we can crank it it to a couple of hours on the timer and it will shut off itself.

Conserving battery power by not leaving the inverter on all night is a handy thing when boondocking.   At this location, we have 8 stations coming in here on the digital airwaves, but none are CBS where the Packer game will be broadcast at noon on Sunday.  So we either have to leave here early to get home to watch it, or Steve will have to be satisfied listening to it on the radio.

As we went to bed, the rain started falling gently on the roof.  It was such a pleasant way to go to sleep...


We were lucky to wake up on Saturday to blue sky and sunshine!  The rain had passed and the clouds broke way to a lovely day!  The temps were only to get up in the low 60's,  but with a heavy sweatshirt or light jacket, we were comfortable outside.

Fall is definitely coming to the northwoods... the colors are changing, not quite full foliage change yet, but enough to feel the crispness in the air and smell the drying grasses and leaves in the glints of sunshine.

The tops of some of the trees are starting to turn red and yellow.... 

We wandered around the woods on the roads and down to the lake

It was very quiet and we hiked along in the woods by the shore, stopping at the small beach area 
where the dogs checked out some big boulders at the edge of the lake.  
Duchess always has to do her "Lassie Impression" and jump up on the big rocks! 

It is so nice to sit along a lakeshore,  no boats, no motors, no cottages, no people.  Just US! 

We have had a lot of rain lately up in this area of the state, so the mushrooms were out in full force.  
The one on the left was HUGE, almost a food across.... the ones on the right looked like a crowd of people all climbing up to a plateau, with a few falling over the edge???  Some imagination, huh?

We met some fellow campers from another site... they were walking their two big standard poodles, each a lovely soft caramel color.  Goofy Ducky, at 10 years old, romps like a puppy when she sees other dogs her own size.  If they had all been off leash, they would have had a rip-roaring good time! 

We came back to our campsite and I got some knitting ... these are some warm woodsey wool socks I am needle knitting (2 at a time on a long circular needle for those who are knitters reading this) 

The socks don't look like much yet, but once they are finished, blocked and steamed, they will be fantastic!  Thick and lush and warm for the upcoming fall days and nights. 

The yarn is from some that I bought quite a while back and I am finally getting around to knitting it up. It is a project yarn from a group of women in Uruguay, where they are learning to market their handspun yarns and it is sold in other countries to help them learn commerce, a skill, and how to become financially independent.  

Here is what it says on a website:

Manos del Uruguay Yarn

The Manos del Uruguay brand was born in 1968 when a group of women developed an idea to promote economic & social development of women in rural areas of the country. These craftswomen are the owners of Manos & are able to stay in their home towns yet still make a decent living by handspinning & dyeing the wonderful Manos wool & wool blend handknitting yarns. 

So I bought three skeins of it, because the colors really spoke to me.  I wonder what the woman was thinking as she spun this? It was very expensive, probably the most expensive yarn I have ever  bought at $16 a skein. I bet that money means a lot to her, probably helping to feed and clothe her family with her artistic skills. The tags on the yarn say the full profit goes to the women in that group.

For lunch, we hauled out the Easy Bake Oven (my Coleman Instastart Oven) and made up my favorite meal.  It's the big pot pies from Aldis store.  The brand is Bremer and they are large potpies in the box of 4 in the freezer section for $5.99.   We have tried the smaller Bremer ones (like the Banquet size) but they are not the same and not nearly as good.  These are big, and have big chunks of real white meat chicken, crunchy veggies and a great crust.   

We like to put them in our Corningware Grab It soup tureens.  Hey, I am missing a lid to one of those tureens, if anyone has one laying around after they broke their dish, I would LOVE IT!  Its a rubbery lid with the shape of the handle too and snaps over entire dish!  I always look at rummage sales for another lid, but never find one.  The whole dish and lid are still available in stores for $10, but all I need is another lid.  I have even checked on Ebay from time to time.   No luck. 

Here is a photo I robbed off Ebay if you want to see what I mean. 

When we are done with our pot pies, our doggie woggies wait for the cardboard bowls they were baked in
WOW--- look at how fast they move when I say "Okay" !!!

After lunch, I hauled out my spinning wheel for some quality time in the sun.... 

the color of this merino wool I dyed myself is really more golden, olive and rusty like fall leaves, but the photo makes it look very greenish...   I have enough to spin up sock yarn for about three pairs of socks. 

It was a great afternoon in the sunshine.. I had soft music going on the MP3 player and tiny speakers on my side table, a cup of coffee in my Grandchildren Mug, and my spinning wheel and fibers.  What more does a Fiberholic gal need?

Since the Easy Bake oven was out, I decided to try a new recipe.  I found this in the last issue of the FMCA magazine (Family Motor Coach Asso.)  and it is by Janet Groene

North Carolina Apple Cake

North Carolina’s apple orchards are a vision in springtime when they are in bloom. In the fall, apple-laden trees are ripe for the picking, often at you-pick orchards. This interesting cake relies on apples and pecans for its flavor, unlike most apple desserts that call for cinnamon. It’s a boon for motor coach cooks, because it whisks together in one bowl without an electric mixer.

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 to 2 cups sugar (more for tart apples, almost none for Golden Delicious) 
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt 
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups peeled North Carolina apples cut in small dice
1 cup chopped North Carolina pecans

Optional Glaze:
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon rum or butter-rum flavoring

In a large bowl, whisk together the vegetable oil, eggs, vanilla, and sugar until light. Add the flour, salt, and baking soda. Fold in the apples and pecans. Pour the batter into a greased 9-inch-by-13-inch pan and bake for approximately one hour or until the cake is firm and springy to the touch. Mix the glaze ingredients (except the rum flavoring) in a small pan and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Turn off the heat; add the rum flavoring; and pour slowly over the warm cake.

Here it is baked,                                and here it is glazed 

Trust me, it's delicious!    Steve was my guinea pig to test it out on.
Now I can bake it for my HCE meeting on Tuesday night as we need a dish to pass....

We took another nice walk around the park and snapped a few more pics, but nothing much different from what I snapped in the morning.  It was so nice here that we didn't want to go anywhere in the Tracker, just stay put here in the nice quiet sunshiney woods.  One of the other campers had already left, so now the park was down to 2 other campers plus us.  And they were all gone away from their campsites, so we had the whole place to ourselves. 

Steve hauled out the grill for supper, we did up a filet of salmon on the grill, a pan of rice and some salads with our own garden tomatoes.. yummmmmm Add a bottle of wine, a candle, and we are dining in the finest restaurant we would ever want to be in!  

Sounds like all we do is eat, huh?

We built a nice campfire and sat out till the last log was burned down, the moon was almost full, the sky was clear and stars were everywhere.  What a great evening! 

We toddled off to bed, after brushing the leaf-butt doggies where they were laying on the ground.  
All the dried leaves stick to their fur and we have to catch them at the door 
and brush them off as best we can before going it.  
Sometimes I swear we have more leaves INSIDE than outside from these dogs! 


Ahhh, now it's Sunday morning.  The dogs let us sleep in till almost 8 am before wanting to go outside.  It felt soooo good to get out and stretch and reach to the sky, in the middle of this glorious woodsy setting and give Thanks to our God for making such a great world.  I feel closer here than I do in any church.

Chatted with my sister a little on the MSN messenger, and they were headed out to watch the Packer Game at Flatlanders.  We have to satisfy ourselves with listening to it on the radio today, as the nearest CBS station is still 80 some miles away and not pulling in on our digital tv's during the day.  We could get it at night flickering in and out, but during the day the signals fade when so far out.    

Steve made a nice breakfast and we also had another piece of our apple cake with coffee... yummmmmm

The dogs need a lap or two around the campground, so Steve took care of them while I took a nice hot long shower.  Knowing we are going home today, we can *waste* the water and not have to conserve.  So that means letting the water run between shampoo, scrub up, conditioner and rinsing.  Usually we shut it off between each step to save as much water as possible.  Today was *luxurious* to enjoy the shower.  We have a 10 gallon hot water tank and don't run out of hot water even with a longer shower. 

I will post this now, as the Packer game is starting and Steve is tuning in the radio.  I have my spinning to keep the fingers busy while we listen to the Packers (hopefully) beat Buffalo. 




  1. I so enjoyed this post! So much of what you said I could identify with. It sounds like you had a wonderful spot and I agreee completely about feeling closer to God when out in Nature! I wanted to ask, are your dogs collies or shelties? Oh and I can't wait to try your recipe for the cake!

  2. Hi Mel--- thanks for the comment! Yes, one dog is a Sheltie (Dukie the little palookie) and Duchess is a Rough Collie (Dumb Ducky) ... I have always had Shelties or Collies my entire adult life, sometimes rescuing them from shelters or breed rescue groups ... one sheltie even came right straight from a puppy mill and was in such ill health she was deemed *unadoptable* by the Humane Society. Our Sheltand Sheepdog club got to take her and I took her home and nursed back to good health. As good as could be expected for a geriatric dog. We have her an extra three years to her miserable life. She blossomed and bloomed into a lovely pet. See ya at the Rainbow Bridge, Bani!

  3. You guys are lucky to have those great parks to relax in, We look forward to it and maybe we can get Rigg's to relax in a few years, he is such a bundle of energy. Thanks for your kind words on Adam he had a great weekend and helped Grandma bake some cakes for the Rally we are going to this weekend, never been to one so let you know what we think.Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

  4. That looks like a great park! I can almost smell that apple cake.

  5. Going to try that recipe tonight, similar to one I make but a little less apples and 2 extra eggs and a glaze. One for our local String a long fiber meeting tomorrow night, Marianne Darner and Susan McFarland are in it. Don't know if there are others in there you know. Enjoy all your posts/camping adventures. Donna T.

  6. I would love to be visiting the North Woods right about now. Maybe I will make it next year.

  7. Sounds like a great cake recipe! Still haven't decided what to do about an oven in this motor home either--have a complete stove top with oven from an RV that we bought used but not sure I want to give up the space to install it. This rig does have a washer/dryer that we are going to remove--we could use that cabinet??

  8. I love the Chequamegon Nat'l Forest! I have camped there since the mid 60's...and I bet the campsites haven't changed much at all. :)


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