We went to Oklahoma for the fall festival at Robber's Cave State Park. We participate in the Fall Foliage Cruise that features pre-1981 vehicles. Some of them restored and some of them customized. This year the last count I heard was that over 630 vehicles had registered. That's a lot of shiny paint and wheels!
It's an unspoken rule that you must get up before daylight, eat at McDonald's, and quickly drive up the mountain to Robber's Cave State Park. As you approach the park all you can see is the flashlights from the Park Rangers and Oklahoma Police directing you into the park. You peer through the dark to find the perfect place to park. You want a place close to the main tent and where your vehicle can be easily seen. There's always someone with a flashlight to help you get backed in and not hit the many large rocks that are scattered throughout the park. I breathe a sigh of relief when that's all done. Then I get out and head to the lake to watch the sunrise. This year it was pretty cloudy, but thankfully we didn't have any more rain.
For those who are interested, our truck is a 1940 Ford. It's been customized and is called a street rod. It's not all original. You'll first notice the bright red paint and those shiny Crager wheels. It also has power steering, air conditioning, seat belts, and a larger motor. The actual body is original, but restoring the whole vehicle to original is not practical if you want to drive it and enjoy it. Older motors are not made for our faster highways and the miles we put on them. We do have the original bench seat and it's quite bouncy as you travel. My head is still a little dizzy from bouncing up and down even though we've been home a few days. Okay, enough of that, let me get back to my day.
As I mentioned already the first part of day is spent sitting on a bench by the lake waiting for the sun to rise. When it finally arrives I'm off to wander around the park. This year I discovered a walking trail that I'd not seen before.
It led me to a small spillway with my favorite thing . . . water.
I passed by two young boys about ten or eleven and they told me I had to follow another trail and see this really cool engine. I was more interested in the rock house. I can't imagine how they hoisted those massive rocks to create the engine house. Evidently the engine was used to pump water from the lake.
The street rod show is part of the areas fall festival. There are craft booths, amusement rides, horseback rides, and a quilt show. I enjoy looking at the craft booths and I always check out the quilts. My favorite quilts are in the first picture below. These were all handmade in the early 1900's. The second picture has the more modern quilts.
The expected attendance for the festival was about 70,000 people. That's about 69,990 people more than I'm comfortable with, so I spent a lot of time down by the lake enjoying the view and keeping my back to the activities. There's music playing, good oldies, that covers a lot of the crowd noise. When I'm not visiting with our friends, I'm quite content on a bench with my camera.
On Saturday night the antique cars and trucks cruise the main street of town. After eating at a wonderful Mexican restaurant we sat in the back of our friends old truck and watched the the cruise. He was parked in front of The Picture Show, which has long since been abandoned. I thought their truck looked pretty good sitting in front of the old building.
That brings me to Sunday morning. Once again we get up early, but not as early as Saturday. Once again we meet at McDonald's for breakfast. Then we head toward the rising sun back to Arkansas. There are two things about our truck I don't like. First, there is only one windshield wiper. I guess in the 1940's they didn't think the passenger needed to see out, but I do! And, the other thing is that there are no sun visors. Heading into the sun can be blinding even with sunglasses on! I duck my head or hold a notebook in front of my face until the sun has risen.
I hope you've enjoyed the trip to Oklahoma with me. It was so great to get away. We love traveling in Old Red and being with friends.