Monday, September 2, 2019

Calling All Campers

Happy Labor Day! I hope you are not laboring today, unless it's laboring over planning your next break. We're at the shore all week, which is now a staycation for us, doing some work on the house after the end of weekly rental season and doing some vacationy type things too. A book I read recently had me thinking about camping though. I haven't been in many many years, and aside from the wall of Daddy Long Legs near the bathroom, I really liked it and I'd do it again.

Is it for you?
Almost anyone can camp. Except people alone. I've seen the movies and read the books and you have too. No, go alone if you're on a vision quest but like many things, there's safety in numbers and camping is safer when you’re with other people. If you have specific health requirements, you might want to skip it also. Tents aren’t the most luxurious of accommodation options and might not fit your needs. However, if you need a comfortable bed to sleep in at night and constant access to individual electrical outlets, you don't have to cross camping off your list entirely. You can always consider glamping, which is specialist camping at set sites that are more accommodating to more people. I would totally try glamping.

Where to?
The first step is deciding where you want to camp. Do you want to head to a campsite with showers and electricity? Or do you want to head a little further out into the wilderness? Wherever you decide to camp, make sure you have permission and that it isn’t somewhere dangerous. Some spots can have dangerous ground or wildlife. Always seek permission and do your research first. 

What you Need
You’ll have to invest for your first camping trip, picking up essentials like a tent, a camping mattress, and a sleeping bag. You may also want to pick up other items that will make life easier for you, like a mallet to push tent pegs in, microfiber towels that pack away lightly, tin cups to drink from, and other bits and bobs. Remember you can use all of these items tor all eternity once you have them. When we went camping the last time we borrowed a lot of stuff from more well equipped friends and that worked too. 

Consider walking boots, a good quality waterproof coat, plenty of pairs of socks and hats. Clothes depend on the season, of course. And the basics: your toiletries, sunscreen, insect repellent and a topical antihistamine in case you get bit by something, hand sanitizer, first aid kit, toilet paper!!!

Skill Show
When you go camping, you may find yourself in situations that you don’t face on a day to day basis. That's much more challenging than sitting on the beach, and that appeals to me. You’ll need to be able to pitch a tent, cook food on a portable stove, and start and extinguish a campfire safely. You will also need basic survival knowledge, such as avoiding rivers and wearing shoes at all times in order to prevent yourself stepping on sharp matter. We've all seen Naked and Afraid, right? Shoes matter. 

As with everything, the better prepared you are, the better time you’ll have.

Happy birthday to Mark today - he was on the last camping trip I went on over 15 years ago. LOL

Are you a camper? Any tips to add? 

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