My two or three blog followers may have noticed I’ve not posted much in 2019.
Our 2018 Walt Disney World Fort Wilderness holiday marked the final camping vacation for the Kentucky Sturgill’s! However, only because the first half of 2019 was packed full of Roy interviewing at various universities, contemplating where (if???) we wanted to move AND ultimately a move to Ames, Iowa! Yes, Ames, Iowa. Roy accepted an assistant professor position at Iowa State University and in June, we packed everything up (including Huckleberry Tiffin) and moved to Ames.
I won’t bore you with details of the harrowing months we had no idea if and where we might be moving. BUT, we will say that while we really, REALLY miss being close to our family; sometimes a push outside ones’ comfort zone is actually not a bad thing and we have enjoyed the area of Ames and the wonderful people here. Here is a quick summary of where (and why) we have camped so far since the move.
Ledges State Park, Boone, Iowa – this was a pretty utilitarian camping experience. Six years ago, when we purchased our first RV, I would never in a million years have guessed that we would be camping for a couple of weeks in Iowa because we had sold our house in Kentucky and were waiting for our furniture to arrive in Ames!!!! We were pretty lucky, in that our home in Kentucky sold in 8 days!!! We were double lucky in that we found an absolutely PERFECT house in Ames. But we had to do a quick closing on both in order to have a quick turnaround and our furniture took about a week and a half to arrive in Ames. SO, we are very fortunate to have a home on wheels that we were able to use during that time. Ledges had full hook-ups, large and shaded campsites and VERY resonable prices. I think it was $19 a night for our spot! It easily accommodated our rig, tow trailer and cars. There were a variety of site option, we chose 50AMP, full hook-up. There were some electric only options for more primitive camping. We will definitely be visiting Ledges again, for “real” camping. But it was perfect for this transition period!!
Lost Island KOA, Waterloo, Iowa – being a too far for our annual visit to Holiday World, Roy did some research and found Lost Island Waterpark is about an hour and a half from Ames. We spent several weekends unpacking, settling in, working on minor projects, etc. and decided that a true weekend off has been earned. We spent two nights at the KOA across the street from Lost Island Waterpark. In true Jenny fashion, I didn’t even have my phone with me to take waterpark pictures; however, it was great fun and we stayed from open to close on Saturday and hit all of the attractions. After a quick campground cookout, we played mini golf and drove golf carts (also on the Lost Island Waterpark complex). This was a fun and relaxing weekend before settling into school and sports schedules, so it was a great (close) getaway that we really enjoyed!
West Des Moines KOA, Adel, Iowa – Tripp played travel baseball for the past four summers in Kentucky (including this past summer, which was hectic and crazy with the move). When we knew for sure Ames would be our new home, Roy started researching baseball programs in the Ames area. We hit the jackpot! Shortly after we moved, 3T’s All Star Academy had tryouts for the 2020 Summer season. Tripp made one of the 12u teams and also participates in the Fall 2019 program. Our first tournament was in West Des Moines, so we opted to camp and be a little closer for an early start on Sunday morning. We are pretty sure that Lizzie likes camping more than just being home, so she was happy to tag along for the weekend. I need to say here, in the past we have not really been fans of KOA campgrounds. However, between this one in West Des Moines and the one we stayed at in Waterloo, my opinion may have changed a bit. Both were nice and had much larger sites than the ones we stayed at in the past. This campground in West Des Moines is also a nice option for us all next summer, as it seems like Tripp will be playing in Des Moines quite a bit. We always love to turn a baseball tournament into a weekend of family camping and Lizzie likes that as well!
I will do better keeping up to date, now that we are settled in! We are loving Ames, have met some wonderful people and Tripp has made friends with good kiddos! Goodbye for now, but we are entering the best camping season of the year, so keep an eye out for more campground reviews.