You will see a lot of posts featuring Lake Glendale at Shawnee National Forest in Southern Illinois, near Paducah, Kentucky on this weblog. I like to think it has basically become our unspoken home base campground. We were there probably 4-6 times last year.
One of my favorite features of this place is the very tall, slender trees:
M’s husband C has an awesome family that brought their kids up coming to Shawnee so they are very friendly with the camp host and some of the surrounding businesses.
Also, Lake Glendale campground has THE NICEST bathroom/shower house I’ve ever been in. It’s super clean, cool in the summer and heated in the winter, which is nice! We spent this past winter doing weekends in Lulu and sometimes in C’s family Airstream.
This post is mostly sharing my first trip to Shawnee last April; another M and Jen camp weekend sans husbands (they do accompany us sometimes, I promise!)
This campground is close enough to home at 2-2.5 hours, has a great liquor store on the way (shout out to Speakeasy!) and sits on a beautiful lake. It also features a stable nearby for horseback trail rides plus firewood and ice at the entrance. This campground is nearly always quiet, the primitive camping section is spaced nicely and feels private. The RV electric sites are also super nice!
This entry isn’t as wordy in detail or filled with weird unexpected guests (I digress…most fellow campers we’ve come across have been helpful, kind, trustworthy or non-interactive at all…I know Campfire Mike on my last post was truly harmless. It’s the thought of two women by themselves being approached by a lone camper in the night that adds a little flavor of sketchiness! Disclaimer: no need to be offended or disgusted when I half-jokingly refer to people we meet in the woods as creeps or weirdos, they’re always treated respectfully, it’s all in jest for the story.)
What I really remember of this trip was how beautiful the weather was (actually one year ago today! Came up on my timehop.) I also remember my body aching from riding a horse, which I hadn’t done since I was probably 11 years old. Oh, and falling off of it. Twice. M says it was the most graceful fall off of a horse she’s ever seen. The second time I fell off of it however, nearly dropping my elbow in a nice steaming pile of horseshit was not as graceful. I’m severely awkward at dismounting apparently. Definitely feeling grateful that I don’t get embarrassed easily and can laugh at myself. Let’s be real, if I saw anyone fall off of a horse twice within an hour, I’d absolutely make fun of them. It’s just that person was me. You’re welcome.
Another delightful slice of this trip was spending the afternoon out on the water. M has a couple kayaks we drag with us often and this trip they were very welcome. A bottle of wine each, some sunglasses to shield our highly possible sleepy sun naps from passers (floaters?) by and some music drifting from one of our iPhones. For those of you curious – our campground playlists often consist of Neil Young, The Eagles, several bluegrass and Americana artists, CCR, Nikki Lane…and the occasional Slayer and Metallica.
This trip was also when we dubbed our cowboy boots “piss kickers” thoughtfully derived from the traditional term “shit kicker” – because peeing in the woods at night is tricky. Hey, I never claimed we were entirely ladylike.
All in all I am always happy with our stays here at Lake Glendale. If you should ever find yourself in the vicinity do yourself a solid and spend a night!
You can follow our past, present and future trips on IG #winetimewithbigfoot