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Camping at JP Coleman State Park This Weekend

Posted by Keith Elder | Posted in Family | Posted on 20-05-2008

I can’t remember the last time I went camping, especially with my family.  I’ve been on some one night excursions but I haven’t been on an all out full blown camping with my family since I was little.  We used to camp all the time back in the summer. 

Camping With The Elders

My Dad’s brother’s, Jerry and Lavaughn, along with our cousin Bobby are at the point in life where they are really having fun.  Together they’ve combined forces and have amassed a rather large collection of man toys.  Tractors, bull dozers, backhoes, a fleet of 18 wheelers, campers, boats, a custom theater and game room to just name a few.  One of their latest acquisitions was a grill.  And I’m not talking about a little charcoal grill.  I’m talking about a grill that requires a truck to pull it around that can cook an entire cow in one cooking!  I was informed they’ll be bringing the “man” grill camping this weekend.  They’ve already got the meat and wood to smoke it all up.  Can you say fantastic!?

I’m not sure what other families do when they camp but during the day we mainly fish for catfish and ski.  My Uncles and cousin Bobby took the pontoon boat out to JP Coleman the other day where we’ll be fishing while camping and caught 50lbs of catfish in no time.  Not many people would “test” their fishing hole before camping so I guess testing runs in the family.  I guess you’d call that Test Driven Fishing?  🙂

For those that don’t know where JP Coleman State Park is it hangs off the Tennessee River where Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama converge.  It is a massive body of fresh water.  A lot of people don’t actually know this but you can put a boat in anywhere along the Tennessee river and drive it all the way to the Gulf of Mexico or even all the way to Pennsylvania or even Minneapolis, MN!  How?  The Tennesee-TomBigbee Waterway makes that possible. 

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The waterway connects 14 river systems totaling 4500 miles of navigable waterways that serve mid-America.  My Grandfather used to have a home right on the waterway where we would fish and ski.  Needless to say, all of this is a massive body of freshwater.  And that means GREAT fishing and skiing.  If you haven’t ever explored our country’s river system it would be worth your time to investigate it.  Here’s a map to give you a closer perspective of where we’ll be camping.  I also think this is the first time I’ve shown where I grew up on my blog.

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Gave Away My Camper, Had To Buy A Tent

A couple of years ago, my sister moved to North Carolina and she didn’t have a place to store their popup camper.  She gave it to me when they moved.  I used it a couple of times but the camper had problems.  Eventually those problems turned into major problems.  I tried to set the camper up this past weekend but couldn’t.  The wood around all the sides was completely rotted.  I had a friend come over who is a carpenter to see if he could fix it.  After looking at it more I decided it wasn’t worth my time nor money to fix it and just gave the camper to him.  With the camping trip only a week away, I needed to purchase a tent.

I started looking at tents and decided that I would purchase a tent that would cover the back of my SUV.  I like the concept of having access to the back of the SUV to store things and also being able to watch a DVD from the tent with the trucks DVD player (I know, rough life).  After a lot of searching around I decided on the Napier Sportz 81000. 

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Our tent will be arriving tomorrow and I have a few other things I need to purchase like a cooking stove.  I’m sure I’ll be taking lots of pictures during the trip and hopefully have some prize catfish to show off when we return.  It is going to be nice to just get away from the home office and enjoy nature for a few days over the Memorial Weekend. 

  • Cool, My neck of the woods!! (no… Not red either) Lol.
    The TennTom is a great place. When I was in Starkville we used to take weekend “spur of the moment ” road trips up there. Very beautiful, from what I can remember. 😛

    Thanks! Bill