Oak Mt. Camp Tranquility

I’ve always heard about Camp Tranquility. Okay, well, “always” isn’t true. But a long time ago I read and cut out an article in the local paper about the abandoned Boy Scout camp on Oak Mt.

But I had no idea how to get to it. But it’s just my kind of place. I love abandoned structures. They lead to all sorts of daydreaming and pondering, wanderings and pontifications. I *love* them. I love their falling down-ness if there is such a thing. Their picturesqueness. Their ability to tease about the history of a place and leave so much to the imagination. I’m smitten with ruins.

A beautiful cabin seen through the fall folliage

And this area of Oak Mt. is full of smittenness. I mean ruins.

I like me some ruins! They're fun. BUT one of the ruins had LOTS of logs with nails scattered all around. Be careful with dogs around these type of ruins!! Always check their pads when you get home too!

It is a $3 admission for adults, and $1 for children and seniors (62+). It is easier to find than I thought. We got out at the first major trail head on your right after entering the park and has a good bit of parking. It is the trail head for the Red Trail which is a mountain biking trail so do be aware of any whizzing sounds coming up behind you on this trail. You follow this up to the branch off towards tranquility. It’s not a long walk there at all. I’m sorry to say I didn’t pay attention to which way we went to get to Tranquility off of the Red trail. I think it was left, but if you’re concerned then ask at the toll booth going in. I bet they know.

Signs like these are helpful to identify where everything is.

The camp was built in the 30s by the Rural Works Administration and the CCC. Anything built by the CCC I usually instantly love. This was no exception. I fully intend to go back and stomp around and pay more attention to the ruins. With so many people and one off leash dog, most of my time was spent trying to not let whiskey be a nuisance. These Meetup groups, not all the people are dog friendly. I don’t want my dog misbehaving and getting dogs banned from being on hikes. I don’t know how we did (or were interpreted by others) because another dog was off leash and I felt it made us look pretty bad. Their rough play was perfectly acceptable but not in a group of people not accustomed to dogs, their barks growls and roughness at times. The other dog wasn’t fixed either so there was a bit of dominance and attempts to mount (ugh). But overall the dog was a sweetie and I wish we could have been at a fenced area to let them play. There were a few bumps into people which I regretted but short of turning around and going home, there was little I could do to prevent (again, the other dog off leash, so they were approaching us and roughhousing and the only way not to have this happen would have been to go home. I wasn’t going to do that!) But I am sorry for the leg bumping that occurred while Whiskey was trying to escape the other dogplaying. I tried my best to stay in the back of the group to avoid any problems but that wasn’t always possible. Oh well.

Mr. Blade says "I will be dominant!" Whiskey said "uh no. Bark. snap. Get yo nasty paws off of me you beast." And that was pretty much it.

Whiskey and Blade make nice and be friends joining together in numerous sniffing adventures as the morning went on.

Links: A document from the boy scouts about repairing the camp with a map (that I thought was pretty much useless) and interesting tidbits.

A great historical overview of the camp is available in this document as well as contact information about the Camp Tranquilty Preservation Association.

The official website for Camp Tranquility with individual pictures (much better than mine) of most of the cabins we saw today.

Just google “Camp Tranquility Oak Mountain” and you’ll find tons of additional links.

Rating: 8 excited tail wags for….unmarked trail hiking, varied terrain (lots of hills and valleys to dip into and out of), lots of ruins, Lake Tranquility, horse and deer smells for the dog to ponder, etc. The important thing to remember when you get up to the campsite is to wander around off the trails and find cool stuff. That’s what made it such a great hike!

Camping, geocaching, fishing, hiking on and off trail, picnicking, boating, horse riding, bird watching, nature center, easy and harder trails, mountain biking (good trails for bikejoring!!! We’ll be using them this winter Fo Sho) are all available here at Oak Mountain. Pawsome. Oh and did I mention you can camp and rent a dog friendly cabin with your dog? Let’s go!

In front of one of the bigger cabins

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