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Dale Hollow Lake State Resort Park, Kentucky

September 8, 2012

Our view

Near Burkesville, Kentucky
We planned our trek south to include a visit with artist friend Bill Guffey, who lives in Burnesville.
After our day exploring around Georgetown, Kentucky, we made the 150+ mile drive to Burkesville on Thursday.  We settled in at Dale Hollow Lake State Resort Park (you have to put all of that in exactly right for Garmin to work…), about 9 miles out of town.  The road from I-90 up to the park is a bit narrow and winding, and has one pretty steep stretch that tested my nerve a little, but it was worth the anxiety.  We did learn that there is another way in and out of the park, and that’s the way we took when we left.
This is a beautiful campground, but don’t let the name fool you.  The cost for a full hookup site is no worse than any other medium-priced park.  The place has all paved roads and large sites.  Ours has full hookups which is unusual in a state park.  It’s a good thing we carry two fresh water hoses, because every two sites share the water spigot.  It’s the week after Labor Day, so the place is almost empty, and the guy at the office where we checked in said the weekend should be pretty quiet as well.  In fact, although we had picked out a site online, he sent us in to explore in the Jeep and pick out a site on the spot.  We chose this one on the hill.  With the temperature in the 90s, I worked up a sweat getting us set up.  Nell fixed an early dinner, and we sat outside and watch the shadows get long.

Our site

On Friday, Nell was having trouble with her foot (we now suspect gout), so I drove down into Burkesville to meet Bill.  I parked on the town square and walked into the Cumberland County News office to find him waiting for me with a big grin on his face.  We walked across the sreet and spent about an hour in his studio, talking about his work and the classes he’s teaching.  Bill and I started painting at about the same time, and it was fun to catch up.  He’s worked for the Cumberland County News for a number of years, and not only is his work in the front window, it’s also on the lobby wall inside.
The weather forecast called for rain Friday night and Saturday morning, so we made a date to do some plein air painting on Saturday after the rain stopped.
On Friday night, around 8:30, well after dark, a park representative knocked on our door (not a normal occurence; made us jump). He was going around informing people of the severe thunderstorm forecast, and told us if it got really bad, they would return to advise us, and we could go to the lodge for shelter. We thought that was a nice touch. The serious weather missed us. We had a period of really heavy rain, thunder and lightning between 2:30 and 3:30 am. No wind movement at all. We woke up Saturday morning to rain, a bit of a breeze, and it’s 68 degrees outside. The rain ended around 1pm, with a cloudy sky and a high of 74.

Me painting on Saturday near the entrance to the park

Bill paiting in the same location

Bill drove out to the park and picked me up, and we found a nice little yellow house near the entrance to the park.  We set up our easels on the edge of a golf course, and spent 3 to 4 hours painting.  An occasional car or truck would go by, and the driver would honk and wave.  Bill’s become a bit of a fixture in the landscape around Burkesville.

Dale Hollow Lake from the state park lodge

Bill drove me back to the campsite, and we made a date for all of us to get together for lunch the next day.  That evening, Nell and I drove from our campsite to the lodge and had dinner.  The Saturday evening buffet wasn’t spectacular, but it was decent.  Our table was near a set of glass doors, and the view (above) was worth the price of the food.

Morning Shadows

Sunday morning arrived with a clear blue sky and wonderful shadows playing across the hill below us.  I painted for about an hour, and we drove into town to meet Bill and his family for lunch at the Kountry Junction Restaurant.  Then Bill’s wife, Kelly, and their daughter, Rylea Beth, took Nell around the countryside while Bill and I painted.

Bill, Kelly and Rylea Beth Guffey

Aside from owning her own beauty salon in Burkesville, Kelly Guffey started and operates a program for abused women in Cumberland County called Esther House.  And Rylea Beth made the cheerleading squad at her school this year.

Our RV site… another view

I cannot stress enough what a beautiful park this is.  It covers a huge area.  There is a special camping area for horse people.  The roads are paved, the sites are reasonably level, and, unlike many state parks, there is a lot of open space in the campground.  The lake is huge, and the park boasts a marina, a boat launch area, a golf course, and the lodge itself.

Nell, Kelly, Bill, Ralph

One of the great things about this life is the opportunities it provides us to meet people, including some of the artists I’ve met online over the last few years.  We met Julie Myers and her two boys, John Wooldridge and his family, and John Bohne.  And now we’ve met Bill Guffey and his family.  This was a wonderful stop and we had a great time with these folks.

Next, we meet up with relatives in Chattanooga, and artists in Alabama and Mississippi, before pointing the motorhome toward Texas and our winter locations.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Loretta permalink
    September 17, 2012 4:40 pm

    I hope Nell feels better. For gout you should drink black cherry juice. You can find the concentrate in health food stores in the area. Hope it helps.

  2. September 23, 2012 12:13 am

    After reading your post on Dale Hollow we are going to stay there 4 nights starting 9/29 – sounds great

  3. September 23, 2012 12:15 am

    After reading your post on Dale Hollow we are going to spend 4 nights there starting 9/29 – sound great!

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