Highlights - Memorial Day 1999

Memorial Day Camping Trip '99

Destination:    4th Annual Seneca Rocks, WV Camping Trip.

Group: 18 Adults, 3 Children, 4 Dogs

Suzanne Ruth, Eric Ruth, Hope Reed, Joe Baigis, Valerie Schutz
Greg Grieff, Karen Farrell, Mitch Lebold, Carol Lebold
Mike Green, Brenda Coe, John Kristofits Sr, Ann Kristofits
John Kristofits Jr, Marylinn Kristofits, Steve Shala, Lynne Shala, George

Jennifer Kristofits, Lucas Kristofits, Nathan Kristofits

Tucker, Whitney, Riley, Sierra

Friday  5/28

Weather:  Sunny, Hot, Highs in the mid 80's

3:30Pm  First Group (John Sr and Ann) arrive at campsite.

3:31pm  Second Group (Eric, Suzy, Joe, Valerie) arrive at campsite.

3:32pm  Exchange hello's, and start to setup camp.

3:35pm  Ann observes "Lack of shade"

3:45pm  John Sr. assembles sunshade from Blue Tarp and wash line poles.
              The sunshade sags a bit in the middle.

4:00pm Tents Pitched  (Suzy and Val discover that Hope's tent is "In side out"

4:05pm Joe says "We can put it up like that...just put the poles on the inside"

4:15pm  Joe and Eric attempt to assemble sunshade without instructions

4:25pm  Joe and Eric resort to assembly instructions

4:30pm   Volleyball net setup

4:45pm Hope's tent begins to fly away.  Tent stakes are taken from volleyball net to secure Hope's tent.

5:30pm  Lynne, Steve and Sierra arrive.

5:45pm  Steve Attaches "Zap collar" to Sierra.

5:50pm  Steve demonstrates "Zap collar."  Lynne Protests.

6:00pm  Steve begins to inflate Air Mattress with "Cigarette lighter air pump"

6:30pm  Greg and Karen arrive (With the food and Drinks)

6:45pm Steve and Lynne assemble their Tent (which resembles a Condominium with a small   in-law Apartment)

6:50pm Still inflating Air mattress

6:55pm Greg uses bike stand as support for sagging sun shade

7:00pm Group is hungry.  Pepperoni bread, Shrimp, Baked Potatoes, Chicken Noodle Soup and pasta salad prepared

7:30pm Wood purchased from ranger.  Fire Started

8:00pm John, Marylinn and the kids arrive. (The roof rack is packed high enough, that the c
            clearance on some WV  underpasses could have been an issue)

8:15pm  Air mattress finally inflated

8:30pm John & Marylinn's tent is pitched (this tent resembles a 3 bedroom town house.)
            Val comments that this could be the tallest building in WV

9:30pm  Stranger arrives at campsite asking if "anyone knows Mike Greene"

9:35pm Stranger Identified as "Dave" who has been wandering campgrounds looking for our camp site.

9:40pm  Dave introduced to group...Enjoys the fire

10:00pm Everyone shares stories of narrow misses with opposing traffic on Rt. 55

11:00pm Hope arrives, and informs the group that she is going to brave the wilderness without a
                sleeping bag for the weekend.

11:30pm Dave departs for walk up camp site.

12:30am Group retires for the evening.

1:30am Mitch, Carol, Mike, Brenda, Tucker, Whitney and Riley arrive at campsite.

1:35am Mitch wonders "Is this the right Campsite"

1:40am  Sierra hears other dogs and starts to growl and bark.

1:41am  Lynne wakes up and tells Sierra it's the "TV" go back to sleep.

1:44am  Sierra and Lynne go back to sleep

1:45am Tents pitched.  Everyone Sleeps.

Saturday 5/29

Weather: Sunny, Hot, Highs in the Mid 80's

6:15am John Sr. rises walks to local store for supplies

7:00am Dave returns to campsite.  Discovers that Mike is still sleeping.  Dave argues "come on, the sun is up,
            we should be out there climbing"

7:05am  Mike remains in tent

7:10am  Dave leaves

8:00am Dogs begin Barking...and Barking...and Barking...

8:15am John & Marylinn's children get up, and encourage the Dogs to bark MORE!

8:30am Everyone is up, begin cooking breakfast (Eggs, Sausage, Bacon, Potatoes)

9:30am Breakfast is finished.  Dishes have been washed.  Group begins to make plans for the day.

10:00am Mike, Brenda, Mitch and Carol meet up with Dave, and climb for the day. Ann stays to guard the camp.
                The rest of the group hikes the back side trail to the top of Seneca Rocks.

11:00am Depart campsite on foot.

11:10am Take leash off Tucker, Tucker disappears.

11:15am  Yell for Tucker to come back.

11:20am  Riley drags Jenny for 10 feet until she lets go of leash.

11:25am  Let all dogs off leashes.

11:30am   Wrong turn on trail leads to Dead End.  Turn around and backtrack.

11:35am 2 women ahead of us discover 4' black snake in path.  They will not proceed.

11:37am John Sr. Moves Snake from the path.  Everyone continues down the path.

11:45am  Reilly takes off after rabbit.

11:48am  Reilly comes back with no rabbit.

12:00pm Hope looses footing on leaf covered trail.  Narrowly avoids sliding down the mountain.

12:05pm John Sr. gives Hope Tylenol as Val holds a cold water bottle to her head.

12:10pm  Val and Lynne help Hope up and coax her into continuing to the top.

12:30pm Group reaches the top of the Rocks.  All enjoy view from lookout.

12:35pm    Group discovers that Whitney is missing.  Begin Searching

1:30pm Lunch at the Top

1:45pm Still searching for Whitney

2:00pm Horseback riding group has found Whitney and returned her safely to the Group.

2:30pm  Members of group get their Smurf names (

2:45pm Dogs drag everyone down hill.

3:30pm Greg prepares pot of Chili.  Everyone enjoys

3:45pm Greg (on bike) and Karen (on foot) head down to river to take a dip.  John and family decide to join.

4:00pm River bathers hear loud bang... observer notices large hole in Greg's bike tire, accounting for noise.

4:05pm Nathan looses left aqua shoe in river.  John begins scouting for shoe along riverbank.

4:10pm John and Marylynn stage stick races in the river to determine where
            shoe might have floated.  Shoe officially lost.

4:30pm Greg's crippled bike loaded on John's truck, Greg and Karen walk back to camp.

5:00pm Volleyball playing Started

5:30pm  2 Drunk folks from the Pig roast next door join the Volleyball game.
                Welcomed by Lynne hitting one of them in the groin with the ball.

6:30pm  Lynne takes VERY COLD Shower in Ladies Shower room

6:30pm Eric takes VERY HOT Shower in Mens Shower room

7:00pm Getting too dark to continue playing volleyball.  Time to start cooking dinner

8:00pm Sausage sandwiches served

8:30pm George arrives at campsite, Looking for Mike Greene

9:00pm Mitch, Carol, Joe, Eric, John Sr. and John Jr. go to Amphitheater to watch
            Pig Roasters sing Folk Songs and Drink.

9:15pm Discover that Pig roasters are a group of FSU Alumni, On their 24th annual Memorial Day camping trip.

9:30pm Receive invitation to 25th annual Memorial Day camping trip (somewhere in Tennessee)

10:00pm Mitch, Carol, Joe, Eric, John SR and John JR Return to camp.

10-12:30pm  Camp Fire Chatter. Smores, Banana Splits prepared.

12:30am Group turns in for the evening.

Sunday 5/30

Weather:   Sunny, Hot, Highs in the mid 80's (Am I sensing a pattern here?)

7:30am Dogs Bark, Kids play, Campers Begin to climb out of bed.

9:30am Breakfast:  Pancakes, Sausage, Bacon, Honey Ham

10:45am  Greg steals Val's bike wheel and Karen borrows Lynne's bike.

11:00am Greg, Karen, Eric, Joe, Steve and Tucker depart for mountain biking expedition at Spruce Knob.

11:00am Suzy, Hope, Lynne, Valerie and the Dogs decide to hike up the front side of Seneca Rocks.

11:00am Mitch, Carol, Mike, Brenda and George pick a more difficult climb for today.

11:00am John, Marylinn and Jenny decide to take horseback ride to top of Seneca Rocks

11:15am Horseback rides booked til tomorrow morning.

11:30am John, Marylinn and Jenny hike with Suzy, Hope, Val and Lynne.

12:00pm Mitch, Carol, Mike, Brenda and George search for umbrella as rocks rain from above

1:30pm Marylinn Sprains ankle while hiking, nearly tumbles down the mountain

1:45pm Tucker chases and finally kills chipmunk despite Mt. Bikers protest.

2:00pm After 10 mile ride, bikers return to vehicles.  Greg, Steve and Tucker decide to continue riding.
            Group decides on a meeting point.

2:15pm Eric and Karen find mud puddles to ride through.

3:00pm Joe, Karen and Eric arrive at (what might be) the meeting point, No Greg/Steve/Tucker.

3:30pm Still searching for Greg/Steve/Tucker

4:00pm Joe, Karen and Eric find Steve.  Steve knows where to find Greg and Tucker.

5:00pm Greg, Karen, Steve, Joe, Eric and Tucker return to camp...
            Covered with dust from dirt road leading to spruce knob.

5:05pm  Suzy asks "Oh my God, What happened to the car?"

5:30pm  Greg, Eric, Joe, Val, Lynne all take VERY Cold showers.

5:45pm  Ranger turns on the hot water to shower rooms

6:00pm Steve and Joe begin to prepare fire for baking potatoes (Must have LOTS of hot coals)

7:00pm  Begin cooking dinner (BBQ-Chicken and Baked potatoes)

7:45pm  Dinner is served.  Everyone enjoys.

8:15pm Test fire temperature by throwing Coors light Beer can into coals.

8:20pm  Beer can has melted, Fire is hot enough.

9-12:00am Keeping warm around the camp fire.  Smores, Hobo Pies, and Banana Flambe a'plenty

12:30am Group retreats to tents for the Evening.

Monday 5/31

Weather:   Sunny, Hot, Highs in the mid 80's (Group decides that Mike and Crystal must have been
                responsible for the inclement weather of previous years)

7:30am  John SR and Ann pack up and head for home

8:00am  Marylinn and Jenny go Horseback riding

8:30am  Breakfast!

9:00am  Everyone begins to break down camp

10:00am  Mike medicates, and bandages Tuckers injured paw.

10:30am Tucker "hamming it up" limps around the campsite on 3 paws.

11:00am  Left over food is auctioned off! (cheap)

11:30am Group picture taken

11:30am Vehicles packed, and ready to depart (Except John, who is still packing truck)

11:45am John stops packing truck to go pick up Marylinn and Jenny from Horseback riding.

12:00pm Group says Good-bye's, and departs ('til next year)