Tuesday when we arrived at Oak Mountain State Park, south of Birmingham, we checked the electricity at our site and found the voltage was too low. We talked with the rangers at the office and found there were a number of sites that were having problems. The power company was supposed to be working on it but of course the had some higher priorities such as schools still without power. Hurricane Zeta caused tremendous damage south of Birmingham last week. The winds were still tropical storm strength when they arrived at Oak Mountain and there were many trees down. (Very unusual for Alabama to suffer from hurricanes 250 miles from the coast.) The park was closed for about a day and a half while they cleared roads. The campground was without power for a couple of days and the park was still without phone service when we arrived Tuesday. The rangers and volunteers were so helpful in trying to find us another site. They were trying to keep us close to Mark and Jo but all those sites were having the low voltage problem. They did the next best thing and provided us a full hookup 50 amp site at the equestrian campground for Tuesday night – while still holding our reserved site for when the power was repaired. The equestrian campground is at the opposite end of the park from our original site. However, about 7:00 Tuesday night while we were enjoying a campfire with Mark and Jo, the power company arrived and made the necessary repairs. We still stayed the night at the equestrian campground because we didn’t want to move after dark. We actually were glad to learn of the equestrian campground because it is about 5 minutes from I-65, south of Birmingham, and with nice pull through sites it would make a great place to overnight for people just passing through.
Wednesday was another beautiful fall day at Oak Mountain State Park and after breakfast we moved back to the main campground where we had a site close to Mark and Jo. The four of us headed out to do some hiking mid-morning. We decided on a trail around the lake and really enjoyed ourselves. The trees and the lake were beautiful and we saw areas of the park we had never visited previously. Mid-afternoon more NOMADS friends, Rita and Dave who live in Birmingham, joined us for a great visit. The 6 of us have worked together in the past and it was again a great time of catching up – of course with social distancing. So much fun!
Mark and Jo pulled out Thursday morning in route to their next project where they will be leaders next period. We spent the day hiking and geocaching, and exploring other areas of the park. Oak Mountain was one of our state parks that we had visited once or twice with friends but had never camped at and never really explored. The staff was amazing and the park beautiful with many amenities. We really enjoyed our stay and plan to return.