Thursday, June 22, 2017

Bowling Green KOA - Bowling Green, Kentucky

We have a history of passing through Bowling Green, Kentucky, while traveling up and down I-65. Sure, there are iconic buildings along the Interstate that catch our attention, but not enough to lure us off the highway until now.

Iconic Corvette Museum, which is easily seen from I-65

Our goal was to meet up with a group of fellow Airstream owners all planning to share an adventure touring Kentucky on a Wally Byam Caravan Club International (WBCCI) caravan and Bowling Green was the first stop.

The timing was fortunate in that a national rally for Corvette owners was also taking place in Bowling Green that week. Why Bowling Green? Starting in 1981, all Corvettes were built there.
The rally brought thousands of Corvettes and their owners back to Bowling Green and it seemed as if most were on display in the parking lots surrounding the National Corvette Museum.

Corvettes in the parking lot

You cannot go to Bowling Green without going on the Corvette Factory tour. Even car skeptics are impressed after seeing how Corvettes are assembled.

National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky

The Corvette Museum is next to the factory and houses many Corvette models and concept cars. The museum made the news a while back when a sink hole opened up and swallowed six rare Corvettes worth more than $1 million. The building has been repaired, but several of the cars could not be restored.

Windows on the floor allowing you to see the sinkhole that opened up in the Corvette Museum

One of the Corvettes that could not be repaired after falling into the sinkhole

Another Corvette that could not be rebuild after it fell into the museum's sinkhole

If you find yourself in Bowling Green, you don't want to miss the Corvette factory tour nor the museum.

Another Corvette at the museum
Corvette Concept Car

If you have read through some of the past postings in this blog, you probably noticed that KOA campgrounds tend to puzzle me. We have stayed in KOA parks that range from pitiful to nice with more on the negative side of the ledger than on the positive. So, I approach all KOA campgrounds with low expectations.

KOA in Bowling Green, KY

This particular park falls in the better than average group for KOA campgrounds.

Some of the positive things about this park are that most of the sites are pull-thrus, many sites had shade and there was a reasonable amount of distance between campsites.

Rosie, our Airstream trailer, parked at the Bowling Green KOA

Some of the things we felt could be improved were the views. It didn't matter where you looked outside your RV, all you saw were other campers. Also, you were left with the impression that the franchisee wanted to pack as many amenities in as possible.

Yes, there is a miniature golf course here, but you need to emphasis the word miniature. Yes, there is a fenced dog park here that is a miniature. Yes, there is a children's playground here. You guessed it, the playground is miniature. You can check off the park's features and write "tiny" next to each.

Here are some specifics about this park:
  • Our site had 20 and 30 amp electrical service. Some sites had 50 amp service.
  • Our site also had water and sewer connections. It was nice to have full hookups.
  • Our site was gravel and not level. It took multiple tools to take the left-to-right lean out of Rosie, our 25 foot Airstream trailer.
  • There is a dump station at the front of the park. We didn't need to use it since we had full hookups.
  • There were two bathhouses in the park that we found. One was next to the campstore and the other was in the middle of the park. It seemed that every time we went to one of these bathhouses, it was clean and the floor was freshly mopped.
  • The dumpster is near the front of the park. Some sites have a long walk to get to the dumpster.
  • AT&T placed a strong 4G signal over the park for both voice and data.
  • There was WiFi service, we think, in the park. The password we were given didn't work.
  • The park had cable TV service. We elected to bypass the cable and watch over-the-air TV signals. We were able to pickup ABC, CBS, FOX, PBS and NBC stations. Plus, we saw digital signals from Antenna-TV, GET, GRIT, BUZRZ, ION, CW, MY-TV, ESCAPE, COZI, LAFF and several others I failed to record. Missing was ME-TV, one of our favorites.

Downtown Bowling Green

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Cages Bend Corps of Engineers Campground - Hendersonville, Tennessee

Our goal was to find a campground north of Nashville for one night. We were traveling up I-65 to join up with a WBCCI caravan the next day and we didn't want to pull Rosie, our 25 foot Airstream trailer, thru Nashville's commute traffic the next morning. Also, stopping north of Nashville would set the stage for us arriving on time for the caravan's rendezvous in Kentucky.

We found Cages Bend Campground on our iPhone's AllStays app. The park's reviews were positive, it was along a lake and we were able to get a waterfront site. That pretty much checks all the boxes for a good campground.

Cabes Bend Corp of Engineers Campground

I won't hold you in suspense any longer. Yes, Cages Bend is a good campground.

We wondered if Google Maps and our GPS were conspiring against us as we followed their suggested route to the park. It appeared that we were led thru neighborhoods on roads with noticeably decreasing widths. I found I was hoping I wouldn't meet a big rig coming from the other direction.

It is easy to make a wrong turn going into the park. Yes, there is a faded arrow painted on the road directing you to enter thru the left lane, but is easy to miss. Very easy! Besides, you normally enter parks from the right lane! Fortunately, we only had to back up about 25 feet to angle into the park.

Rosie along the lake at Cages Bend Campground

Enjoying the view

The last words told to us by the park's attendant was that they were having some water problems and the water pressure was up and down. "Down" was the critical word.

As soon as we backed into our site, I could hear other campers asking each other if they had water. A quick check told the story. Our site didn't have water and our fresh water tank was empty. We really should know better than to take Rosie out with an empty fresh water tank.

Evening along the lake

Thankfully, the water came back after about 45 minutes with adequate pressure. The work crew was trying to stop a leak in the park and had to turn the water off while making repairs several times that afternoon. Word on the street was that the repairs would resume bright and early the following morning. We quickly filled the fresh water tank so that we would be prepared when the workers returned the next day.

With the water crisis behind us, we were able to enjoy the park. We kept remarking that this was a beautiful little Corps of Engineers park. Our neighbors on the next site remarked about how difficult it was to get a lakeside site there. I guess some people left early because of the water problems.

One of the standouts for this park was the trees. They were huge, both tall and wide. Plus, they were beautiful.

Some of the trees in Cages Bend Campground

More trees!

Trees around Rosie in Cages Bend

Here are some specifics about this park:
  • This is a relatively small park. There are less than 50 sites in the campground.
  • Our site had 30 and 20 amp electrical service. 50 amp service was available at some sites.
  • Our site had a water hookup. As mentioned earlier, the park was having trouble with its water service while we were there.
  • None of the sites had sewer connections.
  • There is a dump station near the bathhouse.
  • There is a single bathhouse in the park. It wasn't exactly centrally located.
  • The bathhouse was clean and well maintained. It was also dated and needed to be renovated.
  • The dumpster was located across from the bathhouse.
  • AT&T placed a strong 4G signal over the camp for both voice and data.
  • There wasn't any Wi-Fi service in this park.
  • Our site was level.
  • It costs a few extra dollars to book a site on the water. It is well worth doing so.
  • The park is near the flight path to Nashville. While you will see lots of planes, their noise isn't distracting.
  • This was a strong spot for television. We saw more networks and digital channels than I care to list. Let's just say that Rosie's antenna picked up everything we cared to see.
While walking Suzy, our dog, I started talking to a man at the RV dump station. He was wearing an "Army Retired" hat and, as an Army vet, I stopped to thank him for his service. I noticed three stars on his truck as I walked away. I walked back to say I was unaware that I was talking to a three-star general. He was very gracious and thanked me for my service in the Army, which was more than 40 years ago.

This was a great campground find for us. We camped in site nine and will add this to our "Return To" list one day.

Rosie in this park

Trees in Cages Bend
Selfie in Cages Bend
Our site at Cages Bend