Cheraw State Park Camping - Friday, Oct 15, 2010

We woke up Friday morning to a bit of a chill.  The weather was almost perfect the entire weekend.  I say almost -- the sun was out everyday, but the mornings were a little on the chilly side - low to mid 40's.
Early more chill off the lake!!
(Be sure and click on photos to see larger version)

It warmed up to the 70's during the day --  almost perfect!!

Bill and I got out real early and hiked about 2 miles (green line in photo) to an abandoned group camping area.

It was a nice quiet walk, but we never saw much wildlife.  Thought we would come into contact with a couple of deer, but nothing! 
Abandon Camping Cabin at end of trail

By the time we returned, Bill and Chris were in the process of setting up their screen room.  It is a real neat little screen tent which opens much like you would open an umbrella.
Since this is their first camping trip, everything is new to them and they wanted to practice taking the tent down.  Well, it didn't want to cooperate. The directions said, just pull the tab in the middle of the top and it will collapse.  Well, they pulled tabs and pushed buttons and it would not collapse.  Finally, Bill Mills got inside and pulled or pushed something and it collapsed with him inside.  We all had a good laugh over that one.

We spent the rest of the morning talking and tinkering at the campsite.  We got some lunch and then decided to head into Cheraw to go geocaching which is a fun way to do some sightseeing. 

Cheraw's most famous son is Dizzy Gillespie, the famous jazz trumpeter and this weekend Cheraw was hosting their annual Jazz Festival.  Keep in mind that Cheraw is a very small community.  We thought parking and crowds might be a problem, but it wasn't an issue.  We had our choice of parking any where we wanted directly behind the old Tobacco Market.
Side View of Tobacco Market

We walked up the side of the market to the main street and headed towards our first geocache location. 
Front of Tobacco Market on Main Street

Our walk took us past Town Hall which is across the street from Gillespie Park, our first geocache location.
Town Hall

Gillespie Park

We never did find the geocache.  Caches are rated 1-5 as to how difficult they are to find.  This one was rated a 5, so we didn't feel too bad that we didn't find it.  It is the search and spending time in beautiful places that really attracts us to geocaching. 

Nancy here...
OK, that is Nancy's version of geocaching.  Bill's version is a little more intense...hunt and kill would probably be a better description of Bill's approach to geocaching. So we had the hunt, but didn't make a KILL at this location! So we needed to move on and find a new prey!!

Our next cache was located near Old St. David's Parrish.  It was not on the grounds, but near the sign outside the fence.
Bill found the cache near the base of the sign.  It is a micro cache so it was not easy to see.  The two Bills had a difficult time getting that little canister open. 
They work on it for quite some time to get it open.  There was a log inside that little case. After registering the "KILL", we wonder around the Parrish grounds and cemetery. 
The cemetery was VERY old!

Looks like a pumpkin is stuck in this tree stump!!
Little bit of history on this grave marker.
Another VERY old marker!

Never got a picture of the outside of the Parrish, but snapped this photo through a window of the inside.

Next stop........RIVERSIDE PARK
Off we went in search of the third geocache.  It was a great day for a walk and we didn't have any crowds or traffic to contend with.
The GPS took Bill and Chris to the location where they should be able to locate the cache.  But they could not find it. 
There were 3 local residents on the landing looking at us like we were crazy. Once Bill told them what we were doing, they joined in the search.  Even with all the extra help, we never located that cache either.  However, we saw a beautiful park and a nice view of the Pee Dee River.

We decided to head back and tour a little more of downtown Cheraw before heading back to the campground.
Short-cut across the tracks -- who are those HOBOs anyway!

Like we said...not very crowded!!
But what a pretty little town!!

There were a lot of fancy restaurants for such a small town.

Back at the campground, the weather was beautiful.  Bill Jordan and Nancy took a walk to the dam.  Nancy snapped some beautiful photos.
No wind makes for a great reflection on the lake.

 They hiked down the side of the dam to get this great photo!

Exposed tree roots caused by some major erosion!
Perhaps that is why the dam was built.
Beautiful view of the lake from the bridge!

Back at the campsite, it was time to break out the champagne to toast Bill and Chris' first camping trip. 
Here's to many more camping trips!!

We started a campfire, made some smores and drank champagne. 
Chris and Tess enjoying the campfire.
It just doesn't get much better than the day we had today!!
Friday Night Sunset


  1. Very very nice pictures. Looks like a great town to poke around in too.

  2. Well I owe you a big thank-you Laurie! You are the one that told me about the Nikon D3000. I love it and can't wait until I have time to really learn to use it. Right now that camera is doing all the work!!

  3. Excellent pictures, you kids look like you're having the time of your life.

    Remind me to always stay on Bill's good side, anyone who "Kills" a geocache is a man to be feared! ;c)

  4. Glad you enjoyed your visit. My wife and I moved to Cheraw in 1975 and have enjoyed it immensely. The State Park is one of our favorite places. I've hiked over to the old "group camp" cabins, the way, they are still groups, scout troops, etc., can reserve the entire group camp area. Hope you'll come back for Jazz Festival again, or maybe for our Spring Festival, which is held in April.

  5. Thanks Dortypew...

    As a matter of fact we are coming back and bringing about 7 other couples with us. We are coming to the State Park on the weekend after Labor day. Most of our couples have kayaks and we hope to spend a good deal of time on Lake Juniper. Also plan on hiking and checking out the town of Cheraw as well. It is a beautiful spot!!!