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Sunday, November 15, 2009

Montgomery Bell State Park

Just returned from a 2 day, impromptu trip to a beautiful little park in central Tennessee. Montgomery Bell State Park needs to be on your short list. The odd part of this blog is that we did not travel in our beloved Admiral (motorhome) but dared to venture out in a vehicle. You know a car!

The Admiral is in for minor repairs and alas we made the trip without the motorhome. However, part of the trip was to discover a new park and campground. We are forced to search south for camping in the winter months due to the Commonwealth of Kentucky closing almost all state parks for winter months. How stupid. Every hear of global warming? Fortunately Tennessee needs the money and keep most parks open year round.

Please venture to central Tennessee to this park. Named after Montgomery Bell, an entrepreneur in the ore or iron business in early 1800's, the park is located approximately 40 minutes drive due south of Clarksville, TN. Roads are good and the park is also located about 45 minutes west of Nashville. This makes for a busy park during spring through fall, but wonderfully slow in winter.

The Campground offers full hook up on many sites with various discounts. None of which we qualify for. I remain too young for most of these. Located along a wide creek fed by a nearby lake, the campground is near hiking trails and offers access to all parts of the park.

Now for those who need accommodations, the lodge is quite good with lake views from all rooms and the park includes several new cabins along the lake. Do not feed the geese. This may result in expulsion from the lodge to the nearest tavern for drinks for all. Also, please ask for "Darlin" at the front desk. She is quite friendly and usually does not beg for a biscuit. A word of warning here. BRING UNMARKED PAPER OR PLASTIC CUPS FOR YOU ADULT BEVERAGE, WINE ETC. IN FRONT OF THE LOBBY FIREPLACE. This lodge is DRY! I have always wondered when Tennessee and KY. will wake up to the fact that people drink, smoke and spit. While they tolerate smokers outside the facility, you can spit most places except in the floor, they will not permit adults to sip adult beverages of their own without hiding same in paper cups. Just remember, the slight of hand does work and just sit by the fire and enjoy!

Now that I have vented! Let us continue.

Please take the opportunity to visit the 1810 Presbyterian Church and minister's cabin. This is a glimpse of the early 1800's and well preserved. Two trail heads start here and surround the campground. We just entered the church and a young man was playing guitar and prayer was easy and soothing.

We will return to Montgomery Bell State Park in December for a 3 night stay. They do not accept reservations, but is you will call on the way, they will save you a site. Ask for the camp host and be prepared for a long conversation. They are great hosts and spend most of the year in the park. Do not forget "Darlin" at the front desk of the lodge.

Happy Trails!

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