Douthat State Park Camping

Hello Everyone! I hope you are having a great weekend! We spent a very pleasant Saturday afternoon catching up with my family for my Dad’s Birthday. Unfortunately, my brother and my kids couldn’t be there, but both of my sisters were there with their families. Although I have seen parts of the family individually over the past several months, this was the first time we had all been together since the summer of 2019.

I have just one sewing project to share today. When we got home from camping last week, I really gave my fabric purse that I made many years ago a hard look. I needed a new one! I have several that I switch out, but all are starting to show real wear on them, especially on the bottoms and the straps.

This is the London City Bag by Pink Sand Designs and is the second one I’ve made. The purses I’ve made have all been with flower print fabrics like Bonnie and Camille. This time I decided to go a little more sedate and modern looking with Grunge and Grunge Dot by Basic Grey.

The inside has a nice zipper pocket and three open pockets. It’s not a large purse if you like to carry lots of things, which I don’t, but I did make it slightly larger. It has a cross body strap, but since I used the D-ring and Swivel set hardware, I can adjust the straps so it’s also shoulder bag length. I used Soft and Stable instead of the fusible fleece and Decor Bond called for. When making bags like this, I would recommend using a #14 needle in your machine to go through all the layers.

Now for our trip. We arrived at Douthat State Park near Clifton Forge, VA on Monday and left on Friday for a 4 night, 3 day trip. Unfortunately when we left on Monday, we had just read about the gas pipeline troubles so we made sure that after we set up the camper we went back out and filled up with gas. Our plan was to go to either Clifton Forge or Covington one day and ride around the area, but we thought we shouldn’t do that. By the time we left on Friday, there would have been places to get gas, but we didn’t know. We were totally without any kind of phone service except at a few places in the park. It was also a cool week. We had two afternoons that were in the high 60’s with some sun, and one day in the 50’s and cloudy. It was in the low 40’s at night.

There are four campgrounds in the park and we stayed at the White Oak Campground. To get there, you cross this low water bridge. It did look a little sketchy going over it the first time, but we had a little extra room on either side. We did see a video of water over the bridge when it rained and your vehicle would be stuck in the campground when this happens. There are hiking trails in and out so you wouldn’t be totally stuck. I don’t know what happens to people who are scheduled to come and go on the days it’s closed though.

This was a beautiful campground that ran along Wilson Creek. Most of the spots were pretty level and they were nicely spaced. Our site backed up to the creek, but it was about 15 feet down a steep bank. It was very pleasant to hear the running water. The bath house was nice and clean and they had a fish cleaning station. My husband didn’t bring his fishing gear, but with the number of trout we saw people with, we might have had a nice dinner one night if he had. Next time!

We went on a couple of nice long hikes on Tuesday and Thursday and then had a picnic lunch at the lake on Wednesday (the cold day). The blue line is a trail heading out of our campsite, up and over a small mountain. We used that access both days as the starting point of our hikes. The red line is the 5.5 mile hike we did on Tuesday and the green line is the 4.5 mile hike we did on Thursday. As you can see, there is still plenty of hiking left, but some of those will require full days to do. Most of the trails were also mountain bike trails and some were horse trails.

At the top of the first trail, there was a view of the lake. The first day, we hiked to the Blue Suck Falls.

Most of the trails were rated moderate to difficult and from this picture you can see why. In some places they were nice and smooth, but in others, there were lots of rocks. To get to the falls, you hiked up a very rocky trail. In fact for about 10 feet, you were actually hiking up through the creek.

Blue Suck Falls

These are the falls. A little disappointing after some of the falls we’ve been to recently, but it is May, not March, and we really do need rain in our area. If we had known, we probably wouldn’t have hiked to them because the trail really was difficult.

We continued our hike that day through a Mountain Laurel grove which was still in bud but is probably beautiful now. We also crossed lots of creeks. The one above was near the end and one of the easier ones to cross. I did manage to keep my shoes dry! We had a great day and did a little relaxing at the campground for the rest of the afternoon.

Wednesday was mostly overcast and cool, but we did take our lunch to the lake. There are several nice picnic areas in the park and a beach area. Next to the Lakeside Campground (shown at the end of the lake above) there is a boat launch area. Just trawling motors are allowed, but there were always people fishing. I’m glad we decided not to stay at the Lakeside Campground because the sites were much closer together. If you don’t mind this and have your kayak and want quick access to the lake, then this would be the place for you.

Douthat SP was built by the Civilian Conservation Corp in the 1930’s. The lake has an earthen dam and these two spillways. The lake is very well stocked for trout (there is an additional fishing fee for the park) and you can rent canoes, kayaks and Jon boats.

The sun did come out a later that afternoon and we walked down to the creek by the campground. There were people fishing along here everyday, too.

Thursday was a sunny day and we decided to hike by the lake. You can see the beach area on the other side. There were wildflowers in bloom all along this part of the trail, too. We hiked down to the Lakeside Campground, then back up and around through the woods to one of the picnic areas.

From one of the picnic areas, there is a kids only fishing spot at the bottom of the spillway. It was a very pretty area. Behind the fence at the top of the hill on the other side, is another really nice picnic area (where we had lunch) with access to the lake trail and the camp store.

We will definitely be going back to this state park. It was only a few hours away and easy to get to. Next time, I’ll try to get some pictures of the park facilities because it really is one of the nicest state parks we’ve been too.

We have already planned our next outing to a Pennsylvania SP near Gettysburg in June. I hope it won’t be too hot, but I am looking forward to camping in a little bit warmer weather.

Thanks for stopping by and have a nice week.

This entry was posted in Bags and Tote Bags, Camping, Hiking, Mountain Trips, Rpod, Travel, Virginia State Parks, Water Falls and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Douthat State Park Camping

  1. says:

    How fun. We were full time rovers for 41/2 years. Loved it !


  2. Little Quiltsong says:

    Thank you for taking us along on this beautiful trip of yours, Brenda! The pictures are so pretty. Your purse is lovely. I really like the fabrics you used for it. I too like my purses smaller, and this looks like a perfect size.


  3. Lydia says:

    Looks like a fantastic camping trip-love the new bag too!


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