Thursday, October 11, 2012

Camping..Really?

Bill, the camping man
Last week I agreed to a couple of nights camping in a nearby State Park with my Hubby.  In our twenty years of marriage I have gone camping about five times.    He loves it.  Me?  I just don't get it.

Let me recap my experiences.

Me, blending in with my environment
Camping trip #1.  This was the most successful.  Young, single, in love.  Camping by some river.  Bullfrogs singing their bullfrog songs.  Nice campfire.    Outhouse nearby.   After camping trip #1 I thought, this isn't so bad.

Bill gets our tent site ready
Bill carts in our camping gear
Camping trip #2.  A night in the boundary waters.  Newly married.  Adventurous.  Left our cozy A-Frame and paddled into the wilderness.  Set up tent, ate dinner.  Went wandering.  Chipmunk ate my ginger snaps.  Retired for the evening.  Thunderstorm with high winds throughout the night.  Bill was fearful but didn't tell me.   I was too stupid to be afraid.  Paddled back the next day in the rain and wind.  Fun?  I think not.


Wildlife crossing road.



Hiking trail
Camping trip #3.  A summer camping trip with another family.  Family bonding.  Hiking.  Dinner on the campfire.  Smores.  August temperatures dipping into the low 40's at night.  I am not prepared.  Freeze my rear end off.  Could hardly sleep.  Fun?  I think not.

Lake Pepin shore
Frontenac State Park at night
Camping trip #4.   Camping to do a pre-check of Boundary Water camping gear. Darling Daughter and I join Hubby and his Boundary Water Buddy at a Wisconsin state park.  Nice shower/bathroom facility but a little bit of a walk.  Get the tent up.  Do the campfire, dinner thing..barely.  Rain begins and goes on and on and on.  An absolute downpour.  We hunkered in the tent and played cards.    Middle of the night still raining when I ventured out to the outhouse (closer than nice shower/bathroom facility).  Fun?  I think not.

Camping trip #5.  Our most recent two-night adventure in Frontenac State Park.  Gorgeous fall colors.  Lovely hike along the cliffs above Lake Pepin.  Temperatures cool but I was prepared.  Ate at a nearby restaurant but made a nice cozy campfire later.  Forgot the smores.  Went to bed.  Hours later, still awake listening to the non-stop sound of freight trains.   Chugga, chugga, chugga.  Even Bill, the camping enthusiast, was miserable.   Packed up the next day.  Fun?  I think not.

Cool fire.  No smores.
While I agree there are times when the only way to see what you want to see may be by camping, the rest of the time, why would you?   If you can get a nice warm, dry room, with a nice soft bed with breakfast and have that wonderful park/river/vista/hiking trail (you name it) a short drive away, why would you spend all day putting together camping supplies for a night or two outside?

I just don't get it.  Except for the smores.

Frontenac Path to site #6

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