Wednesday, February 11, 2009

California Crossing: Dos Picos Regional Park in Ramona

Day 5

The wipers screeched across the coach windshield. Rain pelted the metal roof making loud pings. The road ahead faded into a thick gray fog. It was time to call “quits” to the day’s road trip.

Ed found Dos Picos Regional Park on the outskirts of Ramona, California. After a quick call to Ranger Kyle, he confirmed site #14 for our large Prevost and headed down a road labeled “Dead End.” We’d been down dead ends before with the coach. I asked for assurance that road lead to the park. Ed promised I wouldn’t be helping him to disconnect the car and dolly to enable him to back up; this was the road to the park. The dead end road wound through California horse country where paints and quarter horses seemed to be enjoying the rainy day.

Dos Picos Regional Park sets in a grove of oak trees. Although the maintenance crew keeps the branches trimmed to give 14-foot clearance, the branches hung heavy with rain. A blacktop park road with raised curbs wound between the trees. We didn’t want to damage the trees, curbs or coach so I put on my purple plastic raincoat and grabbed the walkie-talkie. Did I mention it was still raining?

One overhead branch with a stray elbow barely cleared our roof dome. And, the dolly rose up over the curb on one turn. Our site was not a pull-though so the car and dolly needed to be unhitched…in the rain. Both Ed and I felt soggy wet by time we settled in for dinner and a beer, wait…we were out of beer! Well, we simply settled in for dinner.

“I thought it didn’t rain here,” I commented.

“I heard there’s a drought,” Ed replied then called me a weather jinx.

The rain did stop early enough for us to take a walk and explore Dos Picos Regional Park. We found walking paths through the oaks, an inviting redwood pavilion for group gatherings, and scenic viewing areas of California’s rolling hills. The park was immaculately clean with plenty of room between RVs to make you feel like you have your own green country lot.

Ed said over and over, “This is the nicest campground we’ve ever stayed in…better than Watkins Glenn, better than Banff, even better than Roger’s Rock at Lake George.” He was over the moon about the place and so was I. One night didn’t seem like enough, but in the morning when the sun shone bright, we unhooked and continued our California crossing.

The County of San Diego Parks and Recreation Department operates Dos Picos Regional Park. Our partial hook up cost $24. Saturday ranger programs meet in the amphitheater weather permitting.

February 7, 2009

Dos Picos Regional Park

17953 Dos Picos Park Road

Ramona, CA


No comments: