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Kyle had been trying to get me to go to Buckhorn State Park for a while now.
Located on the banks of Castle Rock Lake, a man made lake and park of the Wisconsin river, I had a feeling this place would be like most campgrounds on the Wisconsin River…mosquito hell. It wasn’t so bad, my only beef with this place was…there wasn’t much to do, or see. The beach wasn’t very big, and there’s nothing around it to make it interesting. Plus, the only time you can be by the water is if you’re at the beach, or if you camp at one of the rustic back pack sites. That’s one plus side if you’re a rustic camper, but for those of us that have been there, done that, it’s not for us.
The in-laws came to stay at our house and watch the dogs while we were gone. They had camping plans at Mirror Lake State Park, but half of their plans got canceled since camping at Wisconsin State Parks only opened on June 10th.
Our site was nice, deep, wide and surrounded by raspberry bushes. I even mentioned to Kyle that there were probably bear in the park since no one had been allowed to camp there since last year. One week later he sent me this. When I’m right, I’m right!
But, this was our first camping trip of 2020 and we hadn’t camped since August of last year. Let’s just say, we forgot a few things. Like extension cords, flashlights, lanterns. We even had to turn around because we forgot our pillows. As uncomfortable as our bed is, I was definitely NOT sleeping without a pillow. Needless to say, Kyle had to make an emergency trip to Walmart right after we set up. And in my mind, all Wisconsin State Parks are near a Walmart, most are, this one, not so much. Again, there was NOTHING around it, at it, or nearby.
On Day 1 we just relaxed, ate breakfast and then decided to hike a few of the trails. We ended up on a trail that seemed to go nowhere for the longest time. And then we happened upon trees that looked like World War III hit. Turns out many oak trees in Wisconsin have been infected with something known as oak wilt.
After checking out the diseased oaks and the very uninteresting “deer enclosure”, we decided to leave Buckhorn and hop in the truck and explore. We decided to drive to Roche A Cri State Park, as it was nearby. We don’t camp in the state parks without flush bathrooms or electricity (yes, we like our creature comforts), so we tend to try to visit these when we’re nearby.
All of the cool paths were closed though due to COVID. We couldn’t see the petroglyphs, climb to the top of the bluff (tallest natural point in Wisconsin, think Blue Mounds with a giant bluff from The Dells on top), or see the Indian mounds. We drove in, drove out and said we’d have to go back another time.
We then explored Adams/Friendship, of course Kyle found a Kwik Trip, he loves Kwik Trip. If you love it to, he highly recommends the Wisconsin Kwik Trip Enthusiast Club on Facebook. We even saw a bumber stick for this on the way home from Door County last weekend.
The second day we just hung out at the camp site knowing that there wasn’t much to do. We had breakfast, washed dishes, took afternoon naps. Overall, the trip was ok, but this wasn’t my favorite place. Best memory overall, the large group of Russians about three or four sites away singing traditional songs, very loud, from 6pm until about midnight.
Buckhorn is now checked off the list!