Where’s the soap?

What’s so difficult about equipping a flush-toilet bathroom?

There are four key components for a decent campground restroom, the most obvious of which is that it needs clean, usable toilets/urinals. Beyond that,there should be a sink or two for washing hands, a soap dispenser for cleaning them and either paper towels or a blow dryer for drying them off.

We’re camping in a string of Mid-America state and national parks, paying $25-35 a night partially for the privilege of having flush-toilet restrooms. At Hot Springs National Park (Arkansas) and Lake Bistineau State Park (Louisiana) there were no soap dispensers. At Petit Jean State Park (Arkansas) we found soap but nary a towel dispenser nor blow dryer.

I was thrilled to find that Table Rock State Park (Missouri) seemingly got it right. The men’s side had twin toilets, urinals and sinks with a soap dispenser. I happily used the facilities, washed my hands with foamy soap and walked over to the blow dryer.

I pushed the button. Nothing happened. It was broken.