Strolling Amok

Pops goes on tour.

Archive for the tag “Chain-O-Lakes State Park”

Cranes, and Stuff

Awww, look at that little guy!

Yesterday began nicely, even though it once again was destined to become hot and humid. I had spotted the crane family you see above days before as they wandered around both the campsites and the shallower water areas. This shot as taken just as I was leaving for an appointment in a nearby town. As photos go, it’s a miserable one to be sure, but who knows when I’d get another chance?

There are snapping turtles in the area too – one lady recently found one that had been run over by a car, put it in her trunk, and hauled it back up to the entrance shack, where she was encouraged to take it to the Read more…

That is Illogical, Captain

In northern Illinois, this is the opportunity to get away from it all.

Now and then, I’m at a loss to explain what might be behind what I observe, when it comes down to the human element. It’s not just the verbal and nonverbal messages during conversations that are considered to clarify the message, the ones that are almost certainly there but are imperceptible in my realm. You know, things you’re supposed to be able to pick up on, read into, decipher, and signal back, in so many words and gestures. The lack of ability to sense and deal with them can be intensely awkward at times. When a conversation stops making sense or begins to become peppered with contradictions, that’s when I have the feeling that there’s something hidden going on that’s not showing up on my radar.

One might reasonably think that continued experience in dealing with such things would be the cure. You know, learning and adapting! That’s simple enough, right? Trouble is, the internal wiring Read more…

Chain o’ Lakes State Park

“Ahhhh, west and wewaxation at wast!” ~Elmer Fudd

Made it! After a time-consuming tour of the campgrounds to find the right combo of traits and availability for two weeks, I opted for a site with electrical power and cool shade. There was exactly one site without that hookup (at a cheaper rate), but it looked to me as if I’d be battling very limited daily spans of solar if I took it, particularly in light of the Chicago area’s predilection for “Chicago sunny weather” (grey overcast). True, the cost is a choker ($145/week at the discounted Senior Rate), but oh well…   That cool shade ought to come in handy less than a week from now, as the daily temperatures climb from the current low 70s up over 90 degrees. Chain o’ Lakes is in Spring Grove, Illinois. Given the boggy terrain, the major crop production here in the growing season is mosquitoes.

I actually stayed two nights at the Petro Truck Stop in Rochelle, wallowing in Read more…

Chain-O-Lakes State Park



I made it to Chain-O-Lakes State Park in Spring Grove, Illinois at 3 PM yesterday. To say it’s lush is pretty accurate. In fact, the undergrowth is so thick that you’d need a machete to carve a new path through it. You can’t simply walk into the woods. Signs say that ticks are plentiful here. I don’t know about that, but my hopes of coming in too early in the year for the mosquitoes and biting flies were in vain. Still, the classic rule to avoid sunrise and sunset works, as does keeping moving.

The spot I made reservations for has no hookups of any kind, and the overhead treetops limit solar power to most of the day rather than all of it, which will likely be good enough. I had to be careful about that, since most of the Read more…

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