Camping in Cleveland


Streetsboro, actually.

So, Nathaniel and Haley’s biological mom’s family lives in Hinckley. We visit them a few times a year, but unfortunately since it is a 2+ hour drive up and 2+ hours back, we maybe get to spend 3 hours there. Their full-blood brother lives up there, and they want/need to spend more time with him. So, when their cousin Brittany graduated from high school and we were invited up for the party, we decided to camp up there so the kids could spend more time together.

The kids’ Uncle Ken recommended a KOA right down the road, and I checked it out and it looked good. We booked the weekend and even took off friday so we would have more time up there.

So with our old camper, it was 5800 pounds and we had no WD hitch so if we got the camper over 50 mph it would begin to sway. Our new camper is over 7700 lbs GVWR but out truck maxes out at 8600. I am sure we are several hundred pounds over weight, fully loaded. So far, it had not been a problem. With the new camper and the WD hitch we could cruise along at 70 mph no problem!

Well, then we went up to Cleveland. I never noticed before when I was driving in a car that about 75% of the drive to cleveland was UPHILL. We were crusing along at 70 mph when all of a sudden the engine started screaming and the RPMs jumped to over 4000! I had to kick off cruise, and from that point on, on any of those long uphill grades, I had to take it off cruise and keep the speed around 55 mph or so to keep the engine revs in the green.

We know that in a few years we will need to get a better, newer truck to haul this camper, but we still need to get a few years out of this one. We dont do much freeway driving so it normally wont be a problem, but lesson learned!

So, the KOA in Streetsboro was nice:

They gave us and end space, which looked awful on the map but turned out to be one of the sites we’ve had:


Tons of room to spread out, nicely landscaped, and they even bent the rules and let Nathaniel set up his tent. Super nice staff, which made up for the long wait to check in. The guy ahead of us was driving a huge class A and towing a sailboat! And they staff was panicked trying to find him a site where he would fit! It all worked out though.

This dock was even more rickety than it looks! One of the few downsides of the campground.
We had a visitor!
Nathaniel roughing it. Notice the extension cord to power his iPod and his earbuds so he could watch Netflix!

We had a great time. Saturday night it poured buckets, and we learned another lesson with the new camper. Our awning was out and all of a sudden there was a huge lake of water on top, so for the first time I had to angle the awning so the water would run off! A little scary there for a bit.

Sunday morning the kids Uncle Ken and Aunt Deanne brought their brother to the campground and the kids fished and swam for a few hours before we had to head back. We spent a lot of time talking to Ken and Deanne, and we successfully transferred the camping bug to them! There are some nice cabins at that KOA and I would not be surprised if they are visitors there soon!

On the drive home we had one more first with the new camper. We hit lots of construction heading home and the 2.5 hour drive took us 3.5 hours. We were hungry about halfway home, and for the first time we pulled into a truck stop to eat. It was a TA up near Lodi. I was not sure what to do or where to go, so I parked with the semis while Julia and the kids walked in and picked up food to go from a Pop-Eye’s chicken. I was too nervous to leave the truck unattended, so I sat out on the tarmac. I was a little amazed to see the truck scales, truck wash, maintenance buildings, etc.

Hoping nobody tells me to move!

We were ok on gas so I didnt have to gas up while hooked up, which would have been another first, but I gained a little more confidence so that I will be a little more prepared for when I eventually have to.

Our favorite thing to do!

So now, for the first time in the year-and-a-half since I started this blog, I am caught up! This was our last trip 2 weeks ago, and our next trip is 2 weeks from now. It will be nice to not be overwhelmed with all of the blogging to catch up on. Next time, we are back at Autumn Lakes for Fourth of July!

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Julia and I both camped as kids and wanted our kids to have the same fun experiences. We have a son Nathaniel and a daughter Haley. We live in Marysville, Ohio.

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