Two weekends ago we spent the weekend with Kelly’s family up at her dad’s cabin. This last weekend we spent some time at my parents farm in Madelia. After two weekends without real camping, Kelly and I were itching to get out and get some camping in. So Kelly booked us a couple of nights at the Ham Lake Campground in Ham Lake, MN. We decided this would be perfect since it is only about 30 minutes from our home and I could continue to work during the day and join them at night.
The Ham Lake campground proved to be the perfect place to spend a few weekdays for our family. The campground is kept really well and has a nice woodsy feel.
The campground also has a fantastic petting zoo. When we first arrived this is all our kids cared about. They wanted to see the goats, horses and birds. I had no idea they would be so into the animals, if they had it their way they would have spent the whole time sitting by the fence feeding the animals.
Minnesota was sitting in the 90’s for heat this past week so we were SUPER thankful that we had a trailer with AC. This was the first time that it completely changed our camping experience.
Along with the animals, Ham Lake also had plenty of space and playgrounds for the kids to run and play on.
This camping trip was really extra fun because Channel 12 came out and visited us for two hours on Wednesday for a story they did on our family camping blog. It was really cool seeing how they put together a story and how a professional camera man saw amazing shots where nobody else did.
After the news crew left I had to leave to go to work on Tuesday but Kelly and the Kids stayed and played with animals and swam all afternoon.
When I got back from work everyone was telling me how amazing the beach was (I hadn’t actually had a chance to check it out yet) and they were not wrong. The swimming area is perfect for a family like ours. For nearly 100′ the water depth didn’t get past 3-4′! It was super shallow and super clean water. We found out later that the campground has their workers spend 2 hours a day cleaning the beach and swimming area.
The swimming area is really what put this trip over the top. I have honestly not found a better place for my family to swim. And since it wasn’t a public beach is wasn’t crowded at all, we pretty much had it to ourselves. It was a fantastic way to stay cool in the 90+ heat.
Tuesday night Kelly, Keegan and I all stayed up after the little ones went to bed (forgot to mention Mikaela is at camp all this week) and were planning on having a little fire outside the camper. Once we realized the heat wasn’t going away we decided against the fire idea since that would have just made us sweat, but we were able to sit up and have some amazing conversations with our son.
After two days of camping we got up bright and early on Wednesday and headed home. Ham Lake was a perfect place to fit in some weekday camping.
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Hey there, I’m Ryan, the face behind Beyond The Tent.
With decades of camping experiences, my journey into the wilderness began on the rustic trails of a farm in southern Minnesota, where my childhood was filled with explorations and camping by a picturesque river.
My family’s adventures across the United States, from the majestic Colorado mountains to the serene national parks and the pristine Boundary Waters Canoe Area of Northern Minnesota have given me a broad perspective. With each journey, whether in state parks or private encampments, and through the homely comfort of our camping trailers, we’ve amassed a trove of stories, experiences, and invaluable camping wisdom.