Reading the guest books when you stay at a cabin can be so much fun! When we checked into James River State Park, made some coffee and sat outside on the deck to enjoy the view, I had already opened the cabin guest book.
Some of my favorites are the big block lettered comments by kids, they see things that we might not see like the big curvy tree at the end of such and such trail that is great for climbing! These are things not printed in visitor books, but undiscovered gems!
"This was our 4th visit to J.R."
Later in the day, this being my very first visit to J.R. I began to call it J.R. as it had a nice ring to it. Not anything like the sinister J.R. Ewing on Dallas, for those of you who know who that is. So for the rest of the day, after reading the cabin guest book and all the happy comments, I decided that I too love J.R.
Walking down the road to hike a couple of trails and visit the ponds and the campground, I just happened to see this field and the contrast of the red Virginia clay and the sky was spectacular! I too love J.R.
A field such as this provides critical habitat for the bobwhite quail, whose population declined 62 percent between 1970 and 1991. You may see these fields at all your favorite state parks.
Hiking the trail up to the Tye River Overlook we heard some rustling in the leaves and there off the side of the trail was an eastern box turtle. Another cool reason I love J.R.
If we had been talking we would not have heard this turtle in these leaves
Wandering around the pond we came across the welcome campfire, where I envisioned excited squirming campers flailing sticks in the air and pushing them forward to reach the billowing fire. This after the long car ride to James River State Park, being told to "keep still we are nearly there" for 150 miles straight.
Are s'mores better than ice cream or pizza in the kid-world? Perhaps, not in taste maybe but in excitement and danger. Where else do Mom and Dad allow you to play with fire, cook outside and stay up so late? I love J.R. for all the excitement and danger and staying up late.
A favorite of kids of all ages is the welcome campfire (cabins and campgrounds unite around the fire for *smoring and Ranger talks)
Drive Time: Northern Va., three hours; Richmond, two hours; Tidewater/Norfolk/Virginia Beach, four hours; Roanoke, two hours; Charlottesville, one and a half hours; Lynchburg, just 58 minutes.
Contact Info: James River State Park104 Green Hill Drive, Gladstone, VA 24553; 434-933-4355;[email protected]. Call 800-933-7275 or email[email protected]to learn more about park offerings. Be sure to specify the park of interest.
— Visit J.R.'s website here.
— Visit the Virginia State Parks main website.
Come on out and see if you love J.R. too!
*Smoring is a verb, not the s'mores themselves, but the act of making s'mores, i.e. a sharp stick with a flaming marshmallow on the end and squeezing it between two graham cracker squares onto a piece of chocolate to make a delicious hot lava confectionery – then eating it. Preferably done by tiny fingers with long hair and a lack of equilibrium.