Anyhow, we took a quick family trip to Branson, MO last weekend. It was beautiful down there. Breath-takingly beautiful. We got to swim outside it was so warm on Saturday. On Sunday we went to Silver Dollar City and the temperature was perfect t-shirt weather (without being hot). And on Monday we were treated to peak fall foliage on a scenic train ride. We don't always get it right, but we sure did last weekend.
The first thing we did at Silver Dollar City was take Michael down into Marvel Cave. Going through Marvel Cave is one of my earliest memories. The giant cathedral room, riding the tram back up. Those things were so impressive they have stuck with me my entire life, so it was really important to me to take Michael through the cave too. He might still be a little too young to remember it, but being in a cave is such a different and grand experience, if he does remember anything from this age, this should make the cut. My only fear as we went through the cave is that he would have to go to the the bathroom and then he'd just have to wet himself because there really isn't another choice. Thankfully, we made it through no problem.
View from the bottom of the Cathedral Room
A waterfall... complete with mood lighting
There are many impressive formations in this cave
The tram that brings you back up to the surface
After the cave tour, it was on with the rest of the park. We took the train around the park and I got us the seat behind the engineer.
Something was slightly wrong with the train, so I thought it was really interesting watching the engineer get out and inspect the train a couple of times... much better than the silly little train robbery they stage.
"Panning" for "gold". Michael was much more interested in playing with the water than the treasure he was supposed to be finding.
They have a super cool play house for the kids with thousands of these balls and tons of hoses to suck them up and air cannons to shoot them from. It was a perfect wonderland for Michael.
The baby swings... not impressed.
Bigger swings, but still not impressed.
Impressed! He rode it twice. Turns out we have a ride junkie on our hands. The faster, the better.
Monday we stopped and checked out the Table Rock Lake dam.
Lake Taneycomo downstream from the dam.
Then we went and took a scenic train ride. This was Michael's first REAL train ride and it did not disappoint.
If you have never been to the Ozarks, you probably don't know how beautiful it is here. We may not have beaches or oceans but we have some of the most vast and beautiful deciduous forests sprawling over our ozark "mountains". My heart will always belong to these woods.
The train ride was pretty neat. It took us over 2 huge old tressels and through 2 tunnels.
Tressel shadows on the valley below.