We’ve been to a fair amount of campgrounds over the few months on the road. Most of them are pretty family-friendly, and I have a compilation of things to look out for when searching for them.
Your best campgrounds will most definitely be KOAs. These are more expensive, but you can count on a well kept campground. Their play area for kids is normally great, as well as their pool. Clean bathrooms are always a part of the KOA experience.
Another type of campground is the Good Sam endorsed campground. This kind of campground can really vary in cleanliness, levelness of sites, friendliness of staff, etc.. You’ll want to do your research before you book a Good Sam endorsed campground. We've been to Camp Lake Jasper and Big Texan RV Ranch, both Good Sam campgrounds, and we liked them both. On goodsam.com, they review each campground based on facility, restrooms and appeal.
The last type of campground is privately owned and not endorsed by a large organization. These campgrounds can also vary in quality, so take a look at reviews before you book a campground like this. Note: You can look at reviews for KOAs and Good Sam campgrounds as well, but especially look at them with this kind of campground.
Here are some reviews that you will see that will be a clue that you should probably not go to this campground.
Comment 1: Yikes. We heard coyotes all night while we stayed here. Don’t go here!
Comment 2: I’ll never go here again! The sites were very uneven, and our automatic leveler couldn’t do it’s job.
Comment 3: The bathhouse is awful here! They were smelly, dirty, and outdated. Also, the staff was unapologetic and had a “Just man up” attitude about it.
The warning signs for bad campgrounds are listed here:
Dirty Bath House
Bad Customer Service
Again, these are warning signs to look out for. The reviews are a good indicator of the quality of the campground.
I’m writing to a mainly south-eastern audience who probably don’t visit Denver on a regular basis. However, having spent a while here, I’ve compiled a travel post for your use if any of ya’ll are going there soon.
We’ve gone to many parks, so here’s a list of our top 3:
1. Westlands Park- This park has 2 climbing walls, a great playground area, an outdoor instrument area, skatepark, observation tower, and a huge green space. This is definitely my favorite park.
2. Wheat Ridge Park- Another family-friendly park, this has a climbing wall, a toddler play area, playground for 5+, a skatepark, and a nice trail around it. This is situated on a hill, so be prepared for some exercise!
3. Prospect Park- While we were staying in Denver, our RV park was right next to this park. This has 2 playground areas, a lake, and a bike path that leads you to the city of Golden.
Here are our favorite 3 places to eat in Denver:
1. Snooze- This great breakfast place hosts a ton of great food, from cinnamon roll pancakes to corned beef hash to avocado egg toast! This is definitely a must eat in Denver.
2. Woody's Woodfired Pizza and Watering Hole- Apparently it's a Colorado thing to put honey on your pizza crust. Woody's Woodfired Pizza has great pizza with a nice sweet ending to each slice!
3. Zig Zag Smokin' Burger- This burger place has amazing food all around. With the Triple Pig sandwich with fries, grilled Brussel sprouts and a house made root beer, I was perfectly happy.
Here’s our top 3 favorite Denver attractions:
1. The Denver Museum of Nature and Science: This museum is great for all ages. We went 3 times, and 2 of the 3 days we went, they had a special program going on: looking at the sun through a highly sophisticated telescope, and watching the Mars rover, Insight, land on Mars. Also, their regular exhibits, such as their health and space exhibits, are superb and interactive.
2. Defy Thornton- This trampoline park meets American Ninja Warrior place is really amazing for those who want some extreme fun. From 2 obstacle courses to a wipe-out machine that spins 2 foam logs to try and knock you off a small pedestal, this indoor house of fun is amazing!
3. Pikes Peak- America the Beautiful was written on this awe-inspiring stand alone mountain south of Denver. We took a bus up to the top, that was guided by a superb guide. And while you’re up top, don’t forget to eat the world famous donuts (that aren’t so good) in the gift shop! They figured out how to cook them at 14,000 feet.
If you’re a sports fan, Denver is definitely a place to go, from the Broncos football team, to the Nuggets basketball team, this city is highly supportive of their sports teams.
Welcome to Denver!
On Wednesday night, we called an audible to attend the public viewing of President Bush as he lay in repose at St Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston. Normally on travel days, we like to keep our agenda light and easy as these are mentally and physically tiring days; however, this was a once in a lifetime opportunity. I asked Will if he wanted to join me and I am so glad we went together....
This was an incredibly organized and well planned out event. 41 would have wanted nothing less. What we saw that night was a wonderful picture of humanity, a grateful community coming together to honor a great man despite all of the logistics involved in such an excursion. The lines were long, the weather was cool, added security was in place and it was certainly a large investment of time. All worth it.
I tried to pay careful attention to the types of people who were in attendance. What I noticed was a blend of people of different ages, ethnic backgrounds and races. Black, White , Hispanic, Asian , many people speaking in a variety of languages in various accents. I pondered why all of these people took time out of their evening to spend a few hours driving in traffic and standing in a long line patiently waiting to barely get a minute to actually see President Bush’s flag draped, military guarded casket. What was their story and why did they come? Of course, I didn’t know any of those people, but I can only imagine that each family and person had their own version of their American Dream affected by the life of President Bush.
On the ground at this event, I didn’t see or hear division, hatred, protests (thankfully) and vitriol. Just a very large group of thankful people who had the decency and respect to honor a man of such high integrity and character. For a brief moment, at least, we weren’t Republicans vs Democrats, Liberal vs Conservative. We were people simply coming together around a common theme. Respect...
Well done, Houston.
For me, the 1988 election was my first presidential election in which I could vote. As a student at the University of Georgia during the Gulf War, I had my first real appreciation for the might and unwavering resolve of the US Military. I’ve always had a deep respect for our men and women in military service and thank God that we had President Bush as the Commander in Chief during that period of our history.
I came home that night with renewed optimism that this type of decency is still very much alive in America. Despite the amped up rhetoric in social and traditional media outlets this week (ok....24/7), I hope we won’t forget that as a society, we can do more together on key issues than we can on opposite sides of all issues. Political preferences will always be present. Despite that reality, my sincere hope is that integrity and character will always serve as great equalizers we can all rally around in how we choose to live in the world today.
Thank you Mr. President - you were a class act. May your legacy be forever remembered.
Will is 14, and enjoys running track, writing,