I am sure you have heard the saying “You live and you learn”. This pretty much sums up our vacation this year.
With us currently being in the process of demolishing our debt, I did not want to take a step backward by going on an elaborate vacation. I also wanted to do something completely different and a tour of Europe was out of the question.
I’ve wanted to go float in a river for several years now, after hearing about how fun it was from some friends.
We decided to go to the Guadalupe River in New Braunfels because we wanted to go to San Antonio after.
After searching for cabins and realizing, # 1 they are rather expensive, and #2 they were completely booked for every weekend in July, my lovely dad suggested that we camp out…IN A TENT!
At first I was completely opposed to this idea! I had not camped in a tent since I was 15. I LOVE hotels!!! I am not talking about your average hotel either. I am talking about the ones that make you feel like a rock star! ←Of course this has been a large contributor to the debt we are currently in!
The more I thought about it, the more I realized, this was something we had never done, as a family, and we needed to try it at least once. I sat out and began planning. I packed everything that we could have ever possibly needed including our own personal potty. I planned out our meals and made a grocery list. I made a to-do list, a shopping list, a packing list…you can say that I was definitely prepared.
Or so I thought…
First of all, we had to get all of this equipment into our Explorer. After a couple of hours of rearranging, repacking, shoving, stuffing and fitting together the pieces of our camping jigsaw puzzle, my husband was able to fit almost everything!
And we were off…
Our first stop was pretty much uneventful. We stopped overnight in the lovely town of Fredericksburg. We stayed in the most charming little hotel with the most beautiful pool I have ever seen!
If you are ever in Fredericksburg check out the Fredericksburg Inn and Suites.
After touring the lovely town the next day, we headed to our camping destination.
We arrived at Roy’s Rentals on the Guadalupe in New Braunfels around 3:00. Our camping spot was amazing! We had shade, soft grass, a beautiful view, and the temperature was in the 80’s. I was convinced that this was going to be fun…and then the adventure began!
The house across the river apparently had a million dollar sound system in which they began playing my most loathed music of all time TEXAS COUNRY!!! It was so loud that our tent was shaking!
Then 27 college kids (ok maybe it was more like 9 or 10) showed up…in the camping spot directly behind us!
By 10:00 that night the college kids behind us were completely inebriated and had a very colorful vocabulary and apparently they were hard of hearing, considering they felt the need to scream their obscene language to one another. The house across the river had turned off the Texas country (thank the Lord), but were singing karaoke at the top of their lungs in the key of drunk.
Somehow, we were able to get some sleep, but I had every intention of making racket early in the morning when we got up!
Our college friends finally went to sleep around 4am.
We woke up the next morning, surprisingly nice and rested, and had our morning coffee and my lovely husband made us bacon and eggs.
Somehow, our college friends were already up too!!!
WHAT THE HECK…DIDN’T THEY JUST GO TO SLEEP?!?!?
After breakfast and several cups of coffee we were ready to float the river!
We covered ourselves in sun block and headed that way. When getting our tubes we were asked if we wanted one with a bottom or without. My husband and nieces were the only ones who “wisely” chose a tube with a bottom.
We then chose the longest float…5 ½ hours.
When asked if we need a tube for our cooler, they looked at us crazy when we said no, we didn’t have a cooler. We just grinned and took off to begin our float.
Adventure on the river
On the river, my ears were IMMEDIATELY assaulted with more Texas country!!! Am I seriously the only person in the world that has any taste in music???
Not only was one person playing Texas country, everyone had these massive cooler with built in stereos that were all blasting various Texas country songs! Every so often someone would float by and have different genera of music and I would be like “can we pleeease be yalls friend for the remainder of the float!!!”
OH how I wanted to “accidentally” flip their cooler tubes over! I did pray that God would make their batteries run out!!!
Once we were able to find a semi-quit place, we floated semi-peacefully down the river…for 5 ½ hours. We were having a great time until the river got so shallow that, those of us without bottoms on our tubes were dragging our behinds on the rocky bottom of the river. I seriously had to plank on my tube for a large portion of the way. Not only did I have a beat up bum, our skin began sizzling! Yea…we should’ve brought the sun block with us!
All in all we had a great time on the river, especially after I convinced my husband to trade tubes with me 😉
The Road Goes on Forever and the Party Never Ends…
We were met with a great surprising upon returning to our campsite. The population had quadrupled, everyone ages 8 and up were holding a beer, people were making out, women were in bikinis (who should not be), and those who were physically fit to be in a bikini were barely wearing that! People were so intoxicated that they could barely take care of themselves let alone the little ones they were carrying around. Above all, the Texas country was even LOUDER!!!!
As we sat in our camp observing the scenery around us, we witness married men hitting on the half-naked college girls. Some sort of wedding ceremony was being performed. An obvious granny, whose boobs were hanging near to her waist in her bikini top, was making out with her husband (maybe boyfriend, maybe someone else’s husband) right on the bank!
On a more positive note, we cooked steaks and baked potatoes for supper and we just knew that these people were going to be smooth passed out by bedtime…
They were partying louder than ever. The game of washers going on in the college kids camp was getting more and more intense, the screeching Karaoke across the river was getting more out of tune and now we had even more campers that were contributing to the Texas country commotion!
With a little help from some melatonin and headphones we were all able to get some rest.
The following morning was a little more peaceful as some of the partiers were sleeping it off. While we were enjoying our coffee and the peaceful morning, the lady camping directly in front of us stumbled out of her tent, half asleep, still in her bathing suit from the day before, hair sticking up all over the place, with a cigarette barely hanging on to her top lip, looking for her son that she apparently had lost. No worries…he was across the campground throwing a football with another young boy.
Considering we all had 7th degree burns, we decided it was not a good idea to go back on the river so we decided to take a break from the river and drive into New Braunfels for the day. We went to the natural bridge caverns which was an amazing place! We went 180 feet underground.
Next, we did a maze, which was a lot of fun (for everyone except my daughter, who got very irritated when she could not find her way out!).
Before we left, the girls did some gem and fossil mining. We had a lot of fun and can’t wait to go back.
After a peaceful family day, it was time to reenter Woodstock 2016. As expected, the party continued…
We decided to go get a tube and get in the water for a while where we witnessed a near drowning incident. A very inebriated young lady fell off of her tube and her equally sloshed friend jumped in to save her. Neither one could seem to get to the surface. Luckily a girl on a tube pulled them both up. The first girl proceeded to choke and puke all over the other girl’s tube. They made it back to shore just in time for another beer.
Bedtime, believe it or not, was even worse! Now the college kids behind us were yelling at the house across the river to “Quit singing” in a much more descriptive manner!
We left extra early the next morning (the hubby’s idea). We got to our hotel in San Antonio at around 1:30 and I pleaded with them to allow us to check in early and they did! We all took showers followed by 4 hour nap!!!
Lessons Learned from camping on the river:
- Not family friendly
- There are apparently no rules
- Get a private cabin
- Get a tube with a bottom
- Take sunblock on the float
- Take a cooler of water
- Never, under any circumstance, enter a porta-potty the morning after…
- Bring personal stereo!!!
All in all, I cannot say that we did not have a good time. It was a beautiful place! Camping was a success (stay tuned for my post on how to camp like a pro) just maybe not for the river. We enjoyed floating but will do a little more research next time. Hopefully my kids learned a life lesson from watching the foolish behavior of all the plastered people, who ended up being our greatest source of entertainment!
Now to go work on that trip to Europe!!!