Downtown Ketchikan, Alaska's First City - Thursday, August 10, 2023

Downtown Ketchikan, Alaska's First City - Thursday, August 10, 2023
Downtown Ketchikan, Alaska's First City - Thursday, August 10, 2023

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Oaklawn Park Race Course and Captain Marvel - Sunday, March 31, 2019

"Divide and conquer," say Bob and Susan, "if you don't want to do the same thing." Today was one of those days. 

Bob wanted to go to Oaklawn Park Race Course, ranked #5 of all thoroughbred race tracks in North America. An unusual feature to see is a world-class-ranked horse racing facility in a national park. 
Assembling the horses before the race.
There's a bugler in this photo somewhere.
(Photo by Bob Alton.)
Oaklawn racing (a moment from a video
by Bob Alton)
Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort has been one of the premiere Thoroughbred racetracks in the country since 1904, best known as the home of the $1 million Arkansas Derby (so says their website). There is no admission fee for general admission. If you want a reserved seat, there are different levels of seating for a cost.

Anyway, Bob had a lot of fun watching the horses race. It was a beautiful day to be at the races. One nice thing is, he didn't have to vie for an expensive parking space! I dropped him off in front of the gate and took off for a movie.

I'm really missing going to the movies with my BFF Susan Medlin. Captain Marvel has been out a week or two and I'm just now making time to go. This is a good flick. The beginning credits showed memories of Stan Lee and a dedication to him. 

This movie goes back in Marvel Universe time and we get to see the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., including Phil Coulson and Nick Fury, when they're getting their start. I thoroughly enjoyed Goose, the cat, as well. If you plan to go, make sure to stay to the very end for the two teasers. Well done! I enjoyed it, and now I'm looking forward to The Avengers Endgame coming out April 25! 

After the movie, I called Bob to let him know I was on my way to pick him up. He met me at the laundromat across from the race track.

When we returned to Gulpha Gorge National Park Campground, we took a walk along the creek and over to the other side of the highway. It was a beautiful evening. Here are some photos of the campground and our walk. We were in Site #3 and do not recommend it. It is next to a very noisy road, highly unlevel, no view or sound of the creek, and just barely big enough for a 33' 5th wheel and Ford F350 long bed truck with a crew cab. Also, there is no campfire ring here, just a BBQ grill. We feel fortunate, though, that we secured a site in the campground.

Site #3, Gulpha Gorge National Park Campground.
Gulpha Gorge National Park Campground.
Gulpha Gorge Amphitheater (closed for the season).
Gulpha Gorge (sites along the creek).
Gulpha Gorge (more sites along the creek).
Our walk along the creek.
We followed the creek to the other
side of the highway.
Bob in the late afternoon sun.

Here's something to keep in mind if you want to camp here: The campground is first-come, first served. Let me explain how you obtain your campsite. It's easy if there's an just pull in and then go to the gatehouse and pay for it on their automated machine, but it has to be after noon. If you get a site at 10:00 a.m., you need to pay for it at noon or after.

First a little background. Bob and I really wanted a creek-side site! When we arrived on a Wednesday afternoon, only two non-creekside sites were available. The site we chose had been vacated two nights early by a couple who switched to a creekside site. They had already paid for site #3 for two more nights, so we had to pay for their site #21 for two nights. 

We stopped by their site and asked if we could move into their site when they left and they said, yes, they would let us know when they were leaving. They told us their friends were leaving too, so two sites would be available on the creek. 

On Friday morning, she knocked on our door and said they'd be leaving in an hour to an hour-and-a-half. We started getting our 5th wheel closed up and ready to go. Bob looked down to their site after an hour and they were still there. We didn't want to crowd them, so we waited. About ten minutes later, Bob looked out and said, "Forget it, someone is already in it." We thought we could get the second site, but when Bob walked to look at it, someone had put their chairs in the site to "save" it. We were SOL.

Here's what happens (in case you're interested in camping there): People looking for a camping spot at Gulpha Gorge arrive around 8:00-10:00 a.m. They drive around the campground looking for someone getting ready to vacate. In fact, when they saw us putting our slide-outs in, they asked if we were leaving and we told them "Yes," thinking we were moving to the creekside. We weren't cutthroat enough and didn't drive our rig down there to wait for the site, so we missed out. 

Tomorrow, we head to Memphis, Tennessee, and lots of music history!

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