Friday, June 22, 2012

Camping Notes 2

I think my "Camping Notes 1" was a Facebook status at least a year ago.  It pretty much just said:

Did you pack the air mattress?

which, incidentally, we did not for our first real camping trip.

So here's what I learned on our second go:
1. 53 degrees when sleeping indoors under a down comforter is NOT the same thing as 53 degrees when sleeping in a tropical weight sleeping bag, with 2 other people in a 6-man tent.
2. The 6-man tent that sounded like a good idea when you thought you might take the dog camping with you is probably not necessary, and will not even be advisable when it comes down to camping in cooler weather than 80 degrees.  You're not going to generate enough body heat to be comfortable.
3. There is no such thing as too much kindling.
4. You're probably not sorry you didn't take the dog with you.
5. Those cargo pants with the zip-off legs are the best $60 you've spent in this whole million-dollar preparation.  You'll wear them for the whole trip.
6. If you can find a campground where there is a curfew for generators: go there.  I loved that it got quiet after 9:00pm.
7. Did you pack the long underwear?

These are the pants in question. They walked home on their own steam.

Do I hear kindling falling?

And I quote: "I'm not sure I can survive 2 days with no screen time."

Dave tolerated my campfire cooking quite well. The addition of spicy chorizo sausage to everything probably helped.  You don't have to refrigerate that stuff.

She can't skip a stone, but she sure can chuck a rock while looking cute.

We will probably go camping again; we have a million dollars' worth of equipment now.  But maybe not at 3300 feet above sea level.  That was just plain cold.  We spent 2 nights in Linville Falls, and wimped out at the prospect of a third night, since it was booked for Pisgah Mountain, at even higher elevation.  I reasoned that we could find an outdoor outfitter store in Asheville and buy enough polar fleece to stave off hypothermia, OR we could spend an equal amount of money on a hotel room.  Dave and Hannah both voted for the Hotel, and who am I to impose my camping will on others?  We grabbed one of the millions of rooms available for hapless campers in Asheville on short notice.  Now we only had to break camp, not set up again, and that freed us up to spend the day at the North Carolina Arboretum, where I dragged Dave and Hannah past every brass plaque I could find.  Plus there was a really cool exhibit based on the book Wicked Plants by Amy Stewart.  Now I have to buy that book.

Hey. It's vacation.  I'm going to have a good time if it kills someone.  Preferably not someone I was hoping would drive me home.

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