August 14, 2011

The Butterfly Festival

This weekend's trip was to the annual Butterfly Festival at the Idyllwild Nature Center. We escaped the heat of the flatlands by driving up the Hill for our monthly camping trip. After setting up camp, we spent Friday afternoon, shopping in town and then visiting the butterflies. Paul and I found that both the heat and the butterflies were much more enjoyable with adult beverages.

There were lots of monarchs in screen tents that would feed off chunks of watermelon you could hold out for them. In the late afternoon, they opened the screens and let them fly away. There were some of the local artisans showing their crafts, so Sherry got some hand spun yarn, a beaded spider, and a "beer ball" necklace.

We camped at the Idyllwild County Park with Linda and Paul Jones. The park was at capacity, but the crew did a great job of keeping everything clean and under control. This campground is along a canyon wall so the parking spaces are all on incline with semi-level tent spaces cut into the hillside. There were a few RV friendly sites at the far loop, but the ambiance there is like camping at the County Fair. The only site we liked was the one I had hand picked six months ago when I made the reservations. Number 9 has some privacy from the other sites, and is overlooking Lily Creek. The site is a pull-through, but I would never try it with a trailer as there is a substantial elevation change from the road to the campsite, and it would surely fold a trailer like a taco. If I couldn't get Site #9, I would point La Rana down the road. There were lots of great tent sites.

Paul, Linda, Andy and Sherry pondering Paul's Pink Choo Choo sticker.
On Sunday morning we drove over to Lake Fulmor where we met up with Wendy, Ahlia and Azia for a hike around the lake and a drive up to the Black Mountain Fire Lookout. We had a lot of fun looking at cattails, damselflies, ducks, and vultures.
Any time is a great time to get up to the lookout, but it was great being able to share it with family and friends. The girls all thought the road reminded them of the Indiana Jones ride at Disneyland. This was another great weekend, but it is still too hot (at 8:30 PM) to unload the RV!

Andy wasn't so impressed with the butterflies, but I wish I had video of him chasing one just a few minutes after this photo.