Oh, how I long for the days of my youth. Where I was wild and free, hitting the road for random weekend getaways with the girls, staying out until the bars closed, and eating decadent food in the wee hours.
Nah, that's not true at all. I love being a responsible adult with a family and schedule to adhere to. But, every once in awhile, I do jump at the chance to partake in a kid-free, girls-only night out.
It doesn't happen often, so when the stars magically aligned this July and I managed to have the same couple of free nights as two of my oldest girlfriends (as in years we've known each other - not their ages...we won't go there!), we knew we had to do it up. I hadn't seen Erin and Sharon in almost a year, and it was definitely time to play catch up.
Now, when I say that we had the same free nights, notice I didn't say we had free days. And, as an added twist, our two nights of planned revelry were not on consecutive dates as we all had various jobs and places to be during the 9-to-5 grind. We needed to plan our reunion accordingly. We were looking for fun, close to the action, and yet the feel of being on a relaxing vacation. Lo and behold, we discovered the KOA in Wilmington — staycation, here we come.
Now, in Adirondack camping terms, nothing seems to say girls' night out more than glamping. So, for our first night of festivities, we chose to stay in one of the KOA's newly added glamping tents.
Don't worry, if you're not familiar with the term, the following pics should clear up any confusion.
We weren't exactly sure what to expect when we arrived - we were more than a little blown away. You see, to me the term glamping refers to fancy camping; basically tenting with a few added cushy amenities. In KOA's case, glamping means a sturdy, super-thick canvas tent on an elevated platform, with basic electricity, a grill, covered sitting room, and comfy beds. Forget tenting, this is nicer than some motels I've stayed at!
Of course, since we were going all out, we had already upped our camping game from the standard paper plates, burgers, potato salad, and beer cans. Our fancy digs were the perfect place to break out our decorative plasticware, fancy appetizers, delicious steak au poivre, stuffed grilled portabellas, and a couple of bottles of red wine.
I won't lie. This place was great. I was shocked, the girls were shocked, and our Facebook friends were jealous of the fun they were missing. Who knew an evening so close to home could transport you so far away so quickly?
The evening ended as all good camping should — blazing campfire, toasted s'mores, and the smell of nature embedded in our clothes. However this night, instead of crawling into a tent and cuddling up to some roots, we were blessed to rest upon real mattresses as we gazed through the screened canvas at the dying embers of a neighboring fire.
So the rundown of Glamping Tent 06 - cuz I know you're wondering:
Honestly, as we packed our bags and headed out in the morning, we were more than a little pleased. Anytime you want to go glamping, I think I can speak for us all when I say, sign us up!
Cabin, what? What exactly were we in for on our second night at the KOA? After the delight of the glamping tents, we didn't think anything could compare.
We were wrong. Open the door to our Deluxe Camping Cabin...
Now, in all honesty, I don't know if it's fair to compare the two stays. In my mind, they are weighed on totally different levels. While the tent was absolutely ideal for our get-close-to-nature and chill-but-do-it-girly-style night, this cabin was a haven in the woods. If I were traveling with family of varying ages and attention spans, and looking to stay for more than one night, I think the cabin might win out.
Why you ask? Well, here are the Deluxe Camping Cabin deets:
Again, we did our dinner up fancier than our traditional tenting meal. With the convenience of a fridge, stove, sink, and grill, we opted for grilled chicken, a medley of fresh fruit and veggies, all accompanied by a variety of mixed drinks.
After doing the dishes and changing into comfy clothes, we headed out to our fire where we ended the night under the stars with a few more s'mores.
Of course, I should take a few sentences to highlight the KOA's many amenities: a mini-golf and outdoor pool, hayrides, theme nights, and the close proximity to many local attractions and activities. Bring - or rent onsite - a mountain bike and hit the miles of local trails, fish the shores of the famed AuSable River, or ride the gondola up Whiteface Mountain. It's all within minutes of whichever campsite you choose. Catch a free concert at the Lake Everest beach, or bring the whole family to visit Santa at the North Pole and follow it up with ice cream at one of several seasonal stands.
And, while we think the KOA was a great choice for a girls' getaway, it seems the guys like it too! Our neighbors for the evening were three Canadian visitors touring the Adirondacks on motorcycles. They must have read this blog highlighting our awesome bike routes!
As the morning dawned, I packed up my gear and headed to work — more relaxed than if I had stayed in my own home. A mere 15-minute drive into the bustling village of Lake Placid, and I was soon sitting in my office already contemplating a return trip.
Whether you choose a glamping tent, camping cabin, or a classic tent or RV site, the girls and I agree: You'll have a great time in the Whiteface Region. And heck, if you're planning a girls' getaway hit us up, we'd be happy to tag along - we'll even bring the s'mores!
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