Dad's Memories

- 08 September 98 - 12 October 98

Our Maine Campsite - Mt Blue State Park - Weld, Maine

We began Recreational camping in 1950, when Helen & Fletcher Freligh, Architect, neighbors in Glastonbury asked if we'd accompany them on a weekend camping trip to Coolidge St Park in Vermont where there were CCC built log leantos that you could reserve in advance. Fletch was a good salesman, and we bought sleeping bags for the occasion. We all stayed in one 10x12 ft log leanto, spread the sleeping bags on the raised wood floor, had a generous supply of firewood under the rear overhang, cooked over the fire in a fireplace out front, had a nice view over the Vt hills---and were sold on State Park camping. We camped at several Vt State parks with the Freligh's on weekends.

With vacation time approaching, Grace looked thru Maine Park literature, saw an article on camping at a Mt Blue State Park. Called the phone # listed and talked with a Mrs. Edith Stulpin, the Park Supt.'s wife. Grace explained that we'd enjoyed camping at Vt. Parks in their leantos, and asked if there were such leantos available at Mt Blue. Edith-- (they had an immediate rapport)-- said the sites in their camping loop were set up for trailers, or tents, tho they did have one very large leanto, at a location remote from the camping loop, used for groups --like Boy Scout troops etc. -- accessible only by boat, about a quarter mile down the lake from the main beach area. They'd never had a family camp there, however, it was not yet reserved for the first two weeks in August -- if we wanted to camp way out in the woods... And, after a lengthy "visit" on the phone, we had a reservation to camp at "South Shelter" - Mt Blue State Park on our vacation.

Camp friends (Leah Tomford ?), Edith Stulpin and Mom - on "our beach" - Mt. Blue State Park - 1957

Rick on the rock - main beach, Mt. Blue in the background - 1957

(Click here for an almost the same Pic from our 1998 trip)

The 300+ mile drive to the Park was always an adventure. Our German Shepherd, Lobo, named by the boys, after a former neighbors Shepherd -- was the worlds worst car traveller, excited, barking at things, jumping around,... Our Vet gave us some pills to quiet Lobo down, but wobbly, and half out, the boys still had a time with him in the back seat.

At the Park HQ, the Park Supt's home, Edith Stulpin welcomed us, and directed us to the Camp Area -- over on the opposite shore of the large lake (Lake Webb). Checked in at camp HQ, Ed Stulpin filled us in on camp routines, we piled in one rowboat, Ed loaded our gear in another ,and we rowed down to our private campsite. In a clearing, about 100 ft wide, and back some 200ft from the lakeshore, was the huge log leanto (about 14' x 28') dirt floor, built under FDR's 1930's CCC youth program, logs over a foot in diameter, with a six ft overhang in front, a big fireplace out from the overhang, a "pitcher pump" about half way down to the shore - where we had our own nice sandy beach - a clean "Chick Sales" one holer off in the woods nearby -- all the comforts of home - and isolated.

Dad getting ready to do the honors - South Shelter - Mt. Blue State Park, Maine - 1957

(Click here for an almost the same Pic from our 1998 trip)

That was 40 years ago, and we've kept in touch over the years. Ed left the Maine Park Service and was Supt at a Park on the Rhode Island shore. Recieved a letter from Edith last year, Ed is not in good health -- getting old -- aint we all.

Dad's Memories Index | HOME

This page created with Netscape Navigator Gold

This page has been visited  times.