"Path of Totality" Or Bust

We had no idea what to expect. Traffic signs on the interstate around home, Charlotte NC, began alerting drivers, weeks earlier to prepare for traffic delays on eclipse day, August 8/21.

We have been planning for the #eclipse at least 6 months: made reservations at Lake Hartwell State Park in South Carolina in the path of totality, and purchased a 5-pack of Eclipse Glasses (CE and ISO Certified Safe Solar Eclipse Shades). This was to be our first total eclipse and we were not about to miss it. 

We left Charlotte on Friday 8/18 for the 3-hour drive south on I85 to our campsite - we wanted to beat the traffic. We didn't get 5 miles outside the Queen City and we were shocked to find ourselves going 10 MPH in 4 lanes of bumper to bumper. We were not off to a good start.

The drive ended well, albeit a little longer than usual, but we arrived alive. The campground is full with "eclipse-seekers", kindred spirits, excited all for the big day.

We are making plans for the big show, tomorrow: 
  • scouted viewing location
  • list of provisions
  • camera batteries charged
  • checking the weather (so far pretty good - mostly sunny)
Stay tuned.


Bandits Roost Campground, NC

Gail was visiting her sister, in central New York, so Terra and I decided to check out a never before visited campground in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in western NC, less than 2 hours drive from home.  This was to be a recon mission for future exploration. There are 3 US Army Corps of Engineers (COE) campgrounds on (or near) W. Kerr Scott Reservoir and after careful research, I decided to stay at Bandits Roost Campground first and check out the others while in the area.

What a great place, easy access off highway 421 in Wilkesboro, NC, hidden in the foothills on a beautiful 1,500-acre lake (actually a 1,475-acre reservoir). My immediate reaction was "how have we missed this place in our 14+ years of camping in the Blue Ridge?"

The coveted camping on the point.

Just the Facts:

  • Camping: The campground has 102 campsites, including 17 tents sites and 85 standard sites with water and electric hookups, showers, drinking water and a dump station. There is a gGroup tent area with a covered shelter, water and electricity, a grill, six tables and seven tent pads.
  • Boating, canoeing, kayaking: There is a boat launch for 1475-acre reservoir, and Anglers will find channel catfish, large and smallmouth bass, bluegill, threadfin shad, spotted bass, hybrid striped bass, and tiger muskellunge 
  • HikingMiles of hiking trails surround the lake, including the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail, which has a trailhead at Bandits Roost campground. 
  • BikingThere are 25 miles of biking trails nearby.

View from Overlook Mountain at sunset