Every Georgia State Park.
Got my Annual ParkPass.
Got my Annual ParkPass.
Dames Ferry, #19
CAMP (Y/N?): Y (2 nights, Tent)
MY ACTIVITIES: Camp
NOTES: AMAZING views; Lakeside camping
Dames Ferry Campground is technically part of High Falls State Park, but I am including it in the tally/count because, well, because I can :) and because on the Georgia State Park website listing State Parks, there are 4 categories: State Parks, State Historic Sites, Outdoor Recreation or Historic Areas, and Partner Sites. My April'19-April'20 includes only the State Parks, of which Dames Ferry Campground has it's own line listing and website link. Providence Canyon is another example of 'not a state park' listed there. I'm not complaining! I think it is fine as is - but the fair/logical person in me thinks this should be at least explained here in my blog. :)
While at High Falls State Park back in the summer, I had a conversation with the Camp Host Volunteer. She mentioned that campsite #28 was the best camping site she has EVER had in her state park travels. Saying that you "wake up looking out over your toes at the water you are so close".
Yes. This may very well be the BEST camp site in the Georgia State Park campground system. I have yet to find a better one - and I look and analysis at every campground. #28 is at the tip of a small 'peninsula' on Lake Juliette.
I arrived just before sunset. I wanted to hurry and get my tent up in the light. The beauty of the sunset was over the top. I totally cried at the intensity and loveliness of it all. A couple of boats were on the water, but mostly it was quiet with a gentle occasional lapping of water at the lands edge. Being surrounded by 3 sides of water is delightful.
Dames Ferry is located near Indian Springs State Park and High Falls State Park, making it a wonderful home base to explore these two parks. Also nearby is Jarrell Plantation, which was closed during my Sunday night to Tuesday trip.
In a conversation with Camp Host Lindy here, I learned so much about Dames Ferry and Indian Springs as he had been at both parks and working Maintenance for 5 years, but lived in the area most all his 72 years. And I got a few stories of High Falls before it became a State Park, including about the 1994 flood washing the bridge and campground away, and his experience of fishing overnight in the old utility tower guardhouse as a young person. Lindy's Indian Springs stories included about how there was a train from Floville to there, a Olympic sized swimming pool, and even a ferris wheel.
This is something that sneaks up on me sometimes - the history and experience of a place before it was what it is now. To hear his stories added a depth of understanding and realization of the connection for the community and the land for generations - not just the parks that are the 'storefront' of this day. I know that some transformations to a park were only because of a community wanting it and making it a reality. I know that some have towns buried beneath waters or limit access to swimming holes that had been tradition.
Change is inevitable. Change is both good and bad, sometimes more one than the other. I think I'm really happy to have the Georgia State Park system so that I can experience and explore now. And I'm delighted when I see a park with the maturity and integrity to acknowledge it's history with a lens of fairness and truth that the story told might have been one-sided and now is opportunity to change to tell many sides for a more inclusive history.
I digress. Mostly all I want to say about Dames Ferry Campground is go and enjoy! :)
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herbalist, locavore, engineer, mom, traveler