Illinois – On Rappel

by Funhog Family on July 28, 2011

Scouting the rappel

Imagine being on the edge of a 75ft cliff and as you look over the edge of it, your 2yr old comes up to you and says, “Me do that!” What would you say to him? The only really fun answer I could think of was, “Absolutely buddy, let’s do it!” As we dropped over the edge Elijah starts squealing with delight repeating, “Fun, Elijah have fun”. This is how our first day in Illinois ended. We traveled to the Garden of the Gods, which is an area covered with sandstone cliffs that go for miles. Our campsite was about fifty feet from the spot where Elijah and the rest of the family had so much fun rappelling off the 75ft cliff. Being so close to camp, I was able to set everything up during nap time with Kendall and Chloe in tow.

Garden of the Gods

After the rappel was set up, the girls and I hiked around the area. We started looking for a restroom, and I was beginning to think I needed to drive to town for water since we were running low. The girls said we needed to pray, and Chloe began doing so. Soon we came to the Observation Trail, which I told the girls we would hike with the whole family, but Kendall wanted to check it out anyway. When we got to the start of the trail, there was a water pump and a restroom! Yes, God answers prayer! (And before this trip even started we prayed that He would make Himself known to our children on this trip, that they would see Him at work.) The next morning the family hiked through, around, and on the sandstone cliffs on the Observation trail. It was a full time job making sure everyone stayed within my predetermined safety zones while scrambling all over the cliffs. Also, we used the old time water pump to get drinks. Everyone took turns pumping. We even washed our hair under it with much laughter.

Cave in the Rock

Our Illinois leg ended with a visit to Cave in the Rock State Park on the Ohio River. There are sandstone cliffs along the Ohio river and the park is around a huge cave entrance in one of the cliffs. We walked into the huge cavern entrance and soaked up the cool breeze. The back of the cave was really muddy so we decided not to walk to the end. This park did not take much time to see, so we were on our way quickly and found that the road ended at the Ohio River. To get to the other side a small barge ferried us across. It was a really cool experience!

Funhog Mama


Funhog Daddy









Family Time

Happy Dude



Ken Hawkins July 30, 2011 at 11:19 am

I wasn’t fooled, that guy just looked like he was hanging upside down. It was all trick camera’s, or you held the camera upside down. lol

Funhog Family July 30, 2011 at 5:56 pm

It is amazing what you can do with computers these days :). Just think – maybe we never even left Phoenix and are able to do the whole trip from the comfort of our living room. Jodi and I were talking and have decided that we are going to get you on the rocks next time we are together. Then I can take a picture of you hanging upside down.

Jamie T. August 5, 2011 at 12:18 pm

It was nice meeting your family at the end of the Garden of the Gods trail in IL a couple weeks ago! We pray for a blessed, safe, and adventure-filled trip for all of you! Brian, Jamie, & Sam

Funhog Family August 14, 2011 at 3:08 am

Thanks Brian, Jamie, & Sam. We loved the Garden of the Gods observation trail and especially the water pump. It was great meeting you, if only for a moment.

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