Last summer, Pokemon Go was all the rage. People were all over the place trying to “catch” Pokemon with the help of their phone GPS. It brought families out from behind their TV’s and Ipads, and around area parks and other green spaces. There were even Poke Stops at libraries and other fun places.
What if I told you, you could do something similar, but with the possibly of finding prizes in the process? That’s Geocaching, also known as the “World’s Largest Treasure Hunt!”
Geocaching has been around for well over 10 years. It is really simple: you use your smartphone’s built in GPS or a handheld GPS and hints to hide and/or seek “caches” — little gifts hidden around the world. As of 2016, there are over 2.8 million geocaches hidden throughout the world and found by over 4 million geocachers. You could go on vacation to Italy and still be likely to find a geocache that may have something to take home as a really neat souvenir! Some caches are large, others are really “nano” small and some just contain logs where others contain trinkets and prizes to swap out. Many cachers will have a “signature” item like a trading card, rocks, buttons, or even marbles that they swap out on their finds.
The one good thing about most state parks is that they, too, have geocaches hidden within the park. This is a perfect activity for the family when camping- you can go on a treasure hunt with your crew- sometimes just the journey to find the geocache is plenty fun enough, but the feeling of accomplishment when you eventually find it is pretty awesome too. We’ve geocached at Percy Quin State Park, where there are several caches. One of them is pretty well hidden and when we found it- it felt pretty awesome! (and muddy!)
If you want to try geocaching, it’s pretty easy to get started. Your first step is to download the Geocaching app. Once you sign up and get your app installed, you will see markers for all of the cache’s nearby. All you do is click on the marker, read the tips and hints, and start searching! Depending on your terrain, dress appropriately, bring your bug spray, some snacks, water, and your own trinkets to trade in the caches, and give it a try! If you find a cache, be sure to share a pic and log your experience so others will know it’s still there, and if you find a useful trinket or prize, be sure to put one back in. It’s that simple!
Next time you go camping, I hope you and your family will take the time to try geocaching! You never know what you might find!
Nestled in the rolling hills of northwestern Mississippi, just one hour south of Memphis, John W. Kyle State Park is a large, sprawling state park that is home to the Sardis Lake Reservoir and accompanying dam as well as a campground, fishing, boating, and vacation cabins. It is also only about 25 miles away from Ole Miss, which makes its location ideal for anyone wanting to visit the campus or a football game in the fall.
We made our visit to John Kyle State Park in November 2016, right before Thanksgiving. We spent 5 days and 4 nights at the park. We thoroughly enjoyed the scenery and serenity of the campground and were pleased with the size of the campsites. RV pads were mostly level and made of concrete and the roads of the campground were paved and provided ample space to back in. Our campsite was spacious, but not shaded. There were sites with trees that were more shaded, but those were not open to reservations at the time. Sites included full hookups, however, the distance between the water and sewer hookups to RV’s required additional length than what is typical. Be prepared upon arrival- you may need extra hoses! I think someone in our party needed a 65′ hose to get to his camper from the hookup.
Finding the campground within this large state park was difficult; signage was not clear or adequate to find the RV campground. Upon our arrival, which was in the late afternoon, there was no park employee available for check in. I think during our whole stay, we may have seen a ranger/park employee one time.
We aren’t sure if it was because it was before a holiday or because it was an off week, but our group and one or two other campers were the only people staying at the campground in this moderately sized campground; therefore, there was not a whole lot of social activity. We tend to like to socialize with camping neighbors and get to know others who enjoy the great outdoors. Amenities include a playground, bath houses, boating and fishing. The environment was a great representation of the beauty of the outdoors as the leaves were turning colors and the lake was very still. It was nice that our kids could ride bikes and play without risk of danger from speeding cars and trucks. The playground area was well equipped and shaded, and the dam was an interesting excursion that was also educational for the kids.
The one downer of this park is that the bath houses left a lot to be desired. Of course, having an RV, we don’t NEED the bathhouse, but sometimes it is nice to be able to use them to save time and effort during the evenings. The bath house that was closest to our campsite was closed and we had to walk considerably further to another one. That one was incredibly dated, musty, and full of cobwebs and broken knobs and did not look like it had been cleaned in a while.
There isn’t much around this area, however, you can head one or two exits down to Batesville, which is a quaint little town with a train station, many cute shops, a Walmart, Kroger, etc. If you want to stick nearby the park, there is a large Dollar General with a small selection of groceries and basic necessities right on the other site of the interstate.
Overall, we enjoyed our visit to John W. Kyle State Park, as the natural beauty and overall quiet nature of the park was great for our extended family to enjoy some valuable quality time. Reservations can be made at Reserve America. This park would be great for LSU or any SEC fans headed up to Ole Miss for a game or to just spend a quiet weekend of R&R.
AMENITIES ⭐ ⭐
BATH HOUSES ⭐
OVERALL CLEANLINESS OF PARK ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
KID FRIENDLY ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
CAMPSITES ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
SERVICE/FRIENDLINESS OF PARK PERSONNEL ⭐
OVERALL RATING ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
We LOVE our camper. It’s roomy, it’s got tons of storage and many modern conveniences like an automatic awning, nice new controls for the water tanks and electric, and beautiful wood cabinetry, an outdoor kitchen and other great amenities.
I don’t however, love how BROWN the interior is. There is an ongoing discussion among several ladies (myself included) in a Facebook group for RV owners that you can tell RV interiors are designed by men because they are overly monochromatic with neutrals like gray and/or brown.
In the case of our lovely little traveling estate, it is brown. Or, more specifically, the trim name given by Keystone that year was “truffle.” Truffle was an understatement. There was so much brown when we went to see it at the dealer, I immediately insisted, once we signed the papers, that I HAD to at least get a new blanket for it because there was so much brown.
It’s been a little over a year since we hooked our truck up to her, and I still can’t stand all the brown. Especially since my friend Kristin at Taz & Belly just completely overhauled her 2007 Keystone Jag and made it look amazing. Her modifications inspired me to definitely brighten up the colors of our travel trailer.
Lest you think I’m over exaggerating, I can assure you I am not. Just these few photographs can show the overabundance of brown within the camper. Notice the brown sofa, the brown cornice boards, the brown curtains, the brownish table, the wallpaper border, the cabinets, etc. All so much BROWN.
Stay tuned, though, because the BROWN is about to go DOWN! I got the okay to make a few cosmetic changes as long as they were not permanent. I’ve purchased some fabrics with plans to cover some cushions and make some window treatments!
Many years ago, we were thinking of our retirement future and we always thought it would be fun to have an “estate” of sorts with a fun play on our last name. My husband loves fishing so he always thought it would be fun to have a fishing camp for our retirement “estate” but then as we added to our family, we discovered our love for RV camping.
My husband and I have been camping since the beginnings of our relationship. We often went tent camping around the metro area several times a year and enjoyed our experiences. In 2010, we purchased our first travel trailer and we took it on several camping trips that we really enjoyed. The following year, we used it as a “fishing camp” and then we had our son! We sold that one (much to my dismay) and for the first year of our son’s life, we skipped out on the camping life. But then, just a few months later, we realized how much we missed our trips in the great outdoors and we invested in a camper our neighbor was selling. That first “family” camper was such a great investment for our family and we certainly got a lot of use from it. We took it to many state parks and even to the beach for a long weekend mini-vacation. But as our son grew, and our camping needs changed, we opted to invest in more space and a new camper. But the one thing we held on to was our adaptability to our new surroundings no matter where we went camping. We purchased our Keystone Outback in January 2016 and have set forth on many fun and relaxing camping adventures since then. When we purchased our new “vacation home” as I call it, I told my husband that we should name her!
Our last name is Savoie, often pronounced “Sav-wah” so it seemed like the expression “Savoir Faire” was an ideal match for our “vacation home.” After all, the expression “Savoir Faire” is a reference to adaptability in any situation— and certainly our RV adventures require a level of adaptability! Like our tagline says, “Always at home, wherever we roam.” We thought it was a perfect play on our last name AND on our travels in our travel trailer!
Hello! I’m Andie, the founder of the Savoie Faire blog. Born and raised in Louisiana, otherwise known as Sportsman’s Paradise, I grew up with a fond love for the great outdoors.
It was while I was searching for a resource to look up campgrounds, gear, and trip experiences that I realized I would love to keep track of our own outdoor adventures in our own blog to share with others and add to the community of “Happy Campers” we have become a part of over the years! Since 2013 my family has been enjoying our local (and not so local) parks and campgrounds in our RV, a bumper pull travel trailer. When we had our son in 2011, we couldn’t wait to create more memories with him and develop a love for the outdoors with him as well, and now we’d like to share that with you!
Get your graham crackers, marshmallows. and chocolate and come join us around the campfire, we’d love to get to know you!