Als ich wisse das Morgen der Erde enden wuerde, immernoch wurd ich mein Apfelbaum pflanzen.

Even if I knew the world would perish tomorrow, I would still plant my apple tree. - Martin Luther

"Factory work's easier on the back, and I don't mind it, understand, but a man becomes what he does. Got to watch that. That's why I keep at farmin' although the crops haven't ever throve. It's the doin' that's important." Madison Wheeler in Blue Highways by William Least Heat Moon

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Mountain Pies and other Fallish Things: Hiking and Camping at Trout Pond, WV

The weekend is a gorgeous one here.  It would be a great one to be camping.  We often go late in the fall because it's quiet and you pretty much have the place to yourself.  This year we went much earlier.  Camping has got to be one of our favorite family activities.  It's cheap, highly entertaining and you get to spend quality time together without being distracted by electronics and house work.  Fall is probably my favorite time to be out there. 
We love going to Trout Pond.  It's a campground in the National Forest in West Virginia (near Wardensville.  When we camp we always make Mountain Pies for dinner.  They're super simple and you can come up with all kinds of great combinations. 
Before you start,make sure you have a really good cooking fire.  You want nice coals here - not flame.
Here's the basic idea...
1)  Butter the outside of two pieces of some kind of bread.
2)  Put sauce and toppings of your choice - not too much - on the non buttered side of one slice.
3)  Cover with the other slice (butter side up).
4)  Spray a mountain pie maker with cooking spray.
5) Put your pie inside the maker and then cook for about a minute each side until toasty. 
6)  Eat!
Here are some of our favorites:
Pizza: white bread, pizza sauce, canned mushrooms, diced onion, diced green pepper, pepperoni
Greek:  mini pita (slit open on one side - fillings go inside) feta cheese, Greek olives, peppers, red onion
Mexi:  corn tortillas, refried beans, salsa, shredded Mexican cheese
Grilled Cheese:  a variety of cheeses
Breakfast:  English Muffin, slice of ham, a small amount of scrambled egg - pre-scrambled works best, sliced of American cheese
Dessert:  Pie Filling (apple, cherry, blueberry) and a piece of chocolate
Pumpkin Pie:  Libby's pumpkin pie filling (not just canned pumpkin) one marshmallow
Practicing the fine art of fire poking.
We also took a great hike with our friends around the back side of the campground and then around the dam.  It was a gorgeous day.

Witch Hazel  - I think....

Rockcliff Lake, - Trout Pond, WV

Wild edibles:  Winter Green and Birch Twigs

We're pretty sure this is a Leatherback - the kind of mushroom Mushroom man brings us.  Just to be safe, we didn't pick it.

We love taking our pop-up camper along.  If the site is level then we can have it up in about 15 min. Plus there's a lot more room than a tent, and we're in better shape if it rains on us.  I don't think we'll ever go back to tenting.  

We spent a rainy morning playing Forbidden Island: an incredible cooperative game.

Have you taken your family fall camping this year?  Where are your favorite places to camp?  We're always looking for a new adventure. 

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