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We took a short two night trip to Burr Oak State Park & Lodge in southern Ohio. We had stayed here thirty years ago on our Honeymoon. This time we went back in style... With our Promaster camper! The "campground" was at a boat dock and had eight sites all jammed together. This time of year ( weekdays) no one seems to use these sites. We had a quiet place next to the lake to ourselves.

Seeing as how Cheryl and I met via a backpacking club and remain active hikers, it was appropriate that we take a hike to celebrate. We hiked a section of the Buckeye Trail that passes thru here. Lots of short, steep hills here on the trial. In a 6 mile loop we accumulated over 1500 ft of elevation change. When we got back and cleaned up, we took a short drive up to the Lodge and had a rather expensive dinner.

The next day before we headed home we stopped at a nearby trailhead in the Wayne National Forest. There is a five mile loop there we had not hiked for several years. The parking area and joining grassy area are nice and it would not be a suprise to see some house sized "camp" trailer jammed in there. And there was one. But what caught our eye was the brightly painted Skoolie off to the side. A highly decorated full size school bus emblazened with (as we later learned) "Dirty Kid Rescue Team". A number of rag-tag looking people with several big dogs running loose. Jugs, bottles, boxes, bags, a couple of small tents... all kinds of stuff scattered all about. A load of modern free-style Hippies! Some counter-culture to be sure.

Of course, I went over to visit and have a chat. Very polite, well mannered (and well decorated) folks from all around the country. They claimed their mission was to find and help anyone lost or gone astray in life. And anyone was welcome to join them. The "leader" ? had a necklace of metal claws, chains and eyelids painted black with orange blazes. His feet were also painted black. Quite an image. They mentioned the current "Rainbow Gathering" going on in Iowa but were heading to Columbus , Ohio in a couple of days. This was a flashback for me as 30+ years ago I was backpacking here and stumbled into a Rainbow Gathering a few miles up the trail.

I complimented them on the paint job on the bus. They were quick to offer to do our van! I thanked them for the offer but declined. We all had a good laugh.

During our walk I found a lost hoody. I carried it out. Back at the trailhead I offered it to the group and they graciously accepted. It went onto a pile of other communal clothing. They invited us to stay and have dinner but we wanted to get moving.

Our three hour drive home was uneventful but we had some interesting things to talk about along the way. ---KenA

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Neat. I grew up on the western side of OH. It looks like I moved away too soon to really explore it well.
 
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