The plans I had been planning on didn't go as planned.
I thought that I was going to be spending the night at Chatfield state Park, but that didn't work out for me because of a rule so stupid that it's hard to believe even a government agency could invent it.... but they did
When I went to the state Park yesterday and talked to the park lady about having a camping site available today she told me, the office opens at 9 o'clock so get here and get in line by 8:30 and you stand a good chance of getting a spot.
That made perfect sense to me, it's Summer, the park is filling up, so get here early before all the spots are gone, I've done all that before so it's no big deal. Just to be safe I got there at 8:15 and sure enough I was the only one there, everything was going great.
When the same park lady opened the office at 9 o'clock me and about five other people walked in the door. I asked her if she had any sites open and she said they have three open right now and will probably have more after the 12 o'clock checkout time, I said great and handed her my credit card. She looked at me kind of funny and said, you can't check in until 1 o'clock. And I said, that's okay I'll just pay for an empty site now and come back at 1 o'clock. She gave me a look as if to say "what in the world is wrong with you" and said, you can't pay for a site until 1 o'clock, you are first in line, so go outside and stand by the door and you will get the first site available at 1 o'clock.
It took a few seconds for me to realize what was really going on here. The park lady was telling me that if you want a site you have to come here at 8:30 in the morning and stand in line until 1 o'clock in the afternoon at which time she will tell you if there's a site available or not.
Well no wonder I didn't understand what was going on, this concept was so alien to me it never occurred to me that they really wanted their customers to stand in line for 4 or 5 hours just to see IF there was going to be a site available but that's actually what was going on.
The people in line behind me were no happier to hear this than I was and started asking questions. One guy asked, do you really expect us to stand out there for four hours? And she said, you can bring a chair if you want to.
I stayed there another couple of minutes listening to people complain and then left. By the time I started up the truck I could see the other people going to their RV's so I assume they weren't going to stand in line till 1 o'clock either.
Not knowing what else to do I just drove to 11 mile reservoir state Park like I had planned on doing tomorrow, and quickly and easily got a boondocking site for a couple of days.
I stayed at Chatfield state Park last year and didn't have to go through this because I was there in September and that wasn't their busy season, apparently they have the four or five hour wait during peak season when the families are here so family members can bring poor old dad food and water while he stands in line so he doesn't die from heat stroke... Heaven forbid they should let you take a number in the morning and then come back at 1 o'clock to claim a site.