A few weeks ago, we took our youth on the trip of a lifetime! Not only did we camp in two different state parks… but we also visited two National Parks during this eventful week! The road to get there was long but totally worth it.
Franklin Mountains State Park
After driving across Texas for almost 12 hours, we made it to our first campsite at Franklin Mountains State Park. We spent the first night exploring the surrounding area, watching a beautiful sunset, and setting up camp. Being surrounded by mountains with close access to a scenic overlook was perfect! This was our home for the first three nights.
Carlsbad Caverns National Park
On our first morning at camp, we headed out bright and early to visit our first National Park, Carlsbad Caverns. We opted to walk down the pathway into the cave on the way down, which was an incredible experience. It was here that we saw countless stalactites, stalagmites, and other rock formations. One of our favorite sights here were the old ladders left behind by those who explored the caves years ago.
After a day of exploration at Carlsbad Caverns, we headed back to camp for dinner and a cozy campfire. We roasted marshmallows and talked about the adventures for the next morning.
Hiking at Franklin Mountains
Our second morning began with a beautiful hike up to a cave located within the Franklin Mountains. The incline was tougher than anticipated but every single student rose to the challenge. After we made it all the way there, we spent some time hanging out and appreciating the beautiful scenery. Then we hiked back to camp, gathered our gear for the day, and hit the road again.
White Sands National Park
We arrived at White Sands National Park just in time for lunch next to the dunes. At White Sands we spent all day sledding, surfing, and running down the dunes. It was so much fun playing in the sand and we all definitely (accidentally) took some sand home with us. We even stayed until the park closed so we could watch the beautiful sunset over the distant mountains. This day was a fan favorite for many of the youth on our trip and we’re hopeful to go back soon!
San Angelo State Park
For our last full day we drove across Texas to our final campsite at San Angelo State Park. This park was absolutely beautiful. We spent the night preparing dinner all together and then cooking our meal over the campfire. Then we each shared our favorite moments of the trip, funny stories, and lots of laughs. This trip was one that none of us will soon forget.