Camping and Fishing at Jim’s

A tranquil late afternoon view of Jim’s pond.


Hi and welcome to the blog!  On Wednesday Jenny and I went out to Jim’s to do some fishing and cooking.  The weather was exquisite with the high temperature being 73 degrees – perfect weather for the feline companion.  Jenny and I went for several walks.  She had a blast… I think.


Available for a buck or so in the Wal-Mart sewing department. Put the chicken liver on the hook and wind, wind, wind the elastic cord. It breaks easily.


Jen and I arrived in the early afternoon.  She stayed in the van much of the time, resting on the comfortable chair.  I fished for a while.  The poles had recently been restrung with new line.  One had a treble hook with chicken liver.  The other contained a large single hook with stink bait.  Just a side note – chicken liver tends to fall off.  The solution is to buy some elastic cord at Walmart and tie it around the bait with many wraps.  That worked great.


Some friends from “across the pond” having a conversation…


Unfortunately, the fish and turtles weren’t biting… other than to steal the chicken liver and stink bait.  In the afternoon Jim and I started a big fire in his pit.  While the steaks were exquisite, the star of the feast was the foil packet.  It contained yellow and red potatoes, onions, rainbow carrots (yellow, orange, purple), as well as butter, olive oil, and spices.  Also on the plate was a small caprese salad made from fresh cherry tomatoes (from a work friend) and fresh mozzarella.


In Jim’s yard is a fire ring purchased from Prison Industries. It makes for some fantastic grilling. He has it elevated about 6 inches to allow for air circulation underneath.


By the way, here are a couple of tips for packet cooking.  Seal the packet as air tight as possible.  Large air pockets invite expansion and the foil could rupture.  Also, use two layers of foil and don’t buy the cheap foil.  The more expensive stuff is so much sturdier.  Double wrapping will also slow down the cooking process a bit (over the extremely hot coals) and that way the food won’t burn.  Rotate, flip, rotate, flip about every 10 minutes with a stick.  I do it even more often.


Jim S and our fine dining.


The dinner and conversation were enjoyable.  The large steaks were actually ones that the store had marked down due to age.  I had a porterhouse and Jim had a t-bone.  A lot of people don’t know this but both cuts come from the same piece of meat – the “short loin”.  One end has a smaller fillet mignon – that cut is the t-bone.  The porterhouse steak is sawed from the opposite end of the short loin.  It looks almost like a t-bone but the porterhouse has a larger fillet portion…  Both steaks taste and cook up the same — heavenly!


One of the aquatic fowl leisurely swimming.


Jenny had multiple opportunities to play outside on the leash and seemed to have a great time.  She and I slumbered peacefully in the van.  I’m hoping Mister Duke, the black tomcat, will eventually take an interest in camping.  His first adventure will be in the driveway… perhaps next week!


Jenny peering out of the van checking out all the sights and smells.


Speaking of the driveway, I slept there last night while the cats dozed in the house.  It didn’t seem feasible to bring the CPAP and medications in the house after the trip to Jim’s.  I’ll be camping again tonight – no need to unpack and repack.  Besides, it was also a lot more quiescent outside without the 3AM meows.  Instead the darned wooden wind chimes rattled all night right by the van.   🙂

Today is Friday and I’m leaving right after work.  The plan is to go see buddy Johnnie in Muscatine, camp, and Saturday we’re going to see the next installment of the remake of “IT” by Steven King.  It should be a fun time!  There will be pictures and good food, of course.  There will be pictures.

Well, life is getting better each day.  I jokingly tell people what doesn’t kill us makes us suffer longer.  The pneumonia is finally gone, the breathing treatments are no longer needed, and the endurance is returning.  There is a lot to be grateful for these days!

Thanks for stopping by!  Safe and happy camping this fine late summer weekend!

Brad and Jenny and Duke
Jones County, Iowa



 440 total views,  1 views today

Bookmark the permalink.

About VanTrekker

I am a former vandweller in Eastern Iowa who, for several years (off and on), lived in a 2007 Chevy cargo van. I still travel around Iowa with my tortoise shell cat, Jennifer Stefanie. Our favorite place to explore is the Country Heritage Community, the four far northeastern counties of Iowa (Clayton, Winneshiek, Allamakee, and Fayette). Ride along as we fish in pristine trout streams, enjoy fine home cooked camping meals, and meet new people. It's all possible on a shoestring budget. Happy travels always! --- Brad, the "Van Trekker"

2 Responses to Camping and Fishing at Jim’s

  1. Jo Harmon says:

    Sounds like a wonderful time, Those steaks look fabulous and so doesn’t the rest of the food.

    And another trip for tonight and the next couple days. Hope you have a great time.

    • VanTrekker says:

      Hi Jo! It’s always fun to cook up a great meal and spend time with good friends. Jim and I had a great chat and, of course, Jenny didn’t mind the cool weather a bit. Take care! 🙂