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Headed South

September 12, 2013

I know the travelogue ended abruptly just before we got to Maine.  I’ll go back at some point and recap that part of the trip.  I had so many photos and so much to write about that it just became a little too time-consuming at the time.  Suffice it to say that it was an awesome adventure for Nell and I, and I promise I’ll share it with you.

But now, after another extended stay in Mount Vernon, Ohio, we’re working our way slowly back to Texas.

Big Bone Lick State Park KY1

Big Bone Lick State Park, Kentucky

Mount Vernon, Ohio to Union, Kentucky, 179 miles

The last few days in Mount Vernon were busy.  On Friday afternoon, we visited with some of Nell’s family at First Friday on the square.  We spent Saturday and Sunday with the kids and grandkids who now live in Columbus, and on Sunday evening one of Nell’s sisters and her family stopped in for a last visit at the campground.

After a visit with Nell’s Mom on Monday morning, we pulled out of Rustic Knolls Campground, Ohio, topped up the gas tank in Mount Vernon, and made our way down Hwy 36 through Centerburg and Sunbury.  We linked up with I-71 and made our way south.  We drove through Columbus easily enough, but chose to take the bypass around Cincinnati.  There are a few long uphill pulls that weren’t bad as long as I was paying attention before we started into them, but it still beat driving straight through downtown Cincinnati in my book.

Our experience last September on our way south told us that parks were going to be pretty empty after Labor Day, so we pinpointed Big Bone Lick State Park as a stopover.  Because there was some archaeological history there, we chose to stay two nights, giving us a full day to explore.  That also gave us a chance to have a delightful dinner on Tuesday night with a former co-worker of Nell’s who lives in nearby Florence, Kentucky.  If you travel I-71 in that part of the country, you may be familiar with the big water tower overlooking the interstate with the big sign that says “Florence, Y’All!”.

Our timing was good.  The park was almost empty and we had our pick of sites.  Also, there was a new discount at Kentucky state parks, which gives seniors a two-fer: two nights for the price of one at a special rate.  So, we paid $20.71 total to stay two nights at the park.  According to the Camp Host, the Park Service is trying to lure people in during the slow time after Labor Day.  The rate applied only for Sunday through Thursday.

The odd name of the state park refers to the springs there that were rich in salt and minerals back during prehistoric times.  The bones of wooly mammoths, mastodons, giant sloths and bison were found in the area.  The giant creatures came for the salt and minerals and became trapped in the bog of the salt marshes.

There is a small museum with quite a display of bones, fossils, arrowheads and the like, and several walking trails.  We took one down by the creek which was milky in places due to the salt content.  We also took a trail down past the small group of bison they have at the park.  We were hoping to especially see three four month old babies and a three week old white one.  Unfortunately, they were all beyond a wood fence so we couldn’t get a good look.  This was an interesting park, and we were glad we stopped.

On Wednesday morning, we hit the road again, and drove 168 miles to Cave City, Kentucky.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Yorky permalink
    September 13, 2013 6:14 am

    Safe journey south Ralph.

    • September 20, 2013 1:25 am

      Thanks Doug (Yorky). We’re working our way slowly, but it’s getting hotter the further we go!

  2. September 14, 2013 6:35 pm

    sounds fun..i am originally from Worthington,just to the north of Columbus..beautiful country there..

    • September 20, 2013 1:23 am

      Hi Tim, I know where Worthington is. I love the countryside in that part of Ohio. Nice to hear from you.

  3. Bonnie Kitzmiller permalink
    October 6, 2013 1:06 am

    Beautiful photos. and so much information about your trip wonderful. Bonnie Kitzmiller Sarasota Fl. also Rustic Knolls Oh.

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