Wednesday, September 02, 2009

My First Camping Trip

This past weekend, I was taken on my very first camping trip. I was privileged to go with experienced campers who (as I found out - to my delight) don't rough it at all - even though we didn't use any of the premade campgrounds. We had everything we needed to enjoy a very comfortable time. There were so many aspects of it that I loved (the view, hiking, the fire, the coziness, the fresh air) and only one that I didn't (I'm planning on getting better at camp sleeping in the future).

The road to camping......

With our friends, Doug and Liz, we drove from Fort Collins (after sampling some excellent (Dark Knight HBA) and not-so-excellent (Belgian Style Kriek Ale) beer at Coopersmith's Pub the night before) to the Poudre Canyon for some scenic and idyllic camping. We followed the Poudre River along until we started heading up into the mountainous forest to find a campsite. We passed people hiking, fishing, swimming, and lazing around in tubes in the river. While the boys were chopping wood, Liz, Curry and I went on a mini-hike (mini because the altitude was bothering me). I wish I had taken pictures, but with a dog attached to one hand, and a beer in the other, over uneven terrain, I had no easy way to document it.

Satisfied with the site and the setup - it is time to get the cooler out!

Found it!

The four of us passed the evening playing a board game (The Alhambra - check it out!), cooking dinner (potatoes and onions, chicken with zucchini and couscous, and bread with rosemary), roasting marshmallows, and catching up.

Then came the real fun: sleeping. In a tiny two-person tent, broad shouldered Monte, restless and wanting to be indoors Curry, and claustrophobic me tried to pass a comfortable night. Every time I felt too confined and had to unzip the tent to get some air, Curry got up to try to find a more comfortable spot; every time Monte fell asleep and started snoring, he woke me up; every time I elbowed Monte to stop snoring, he woke up; every time an animal made noise, Curry stepped on both of us and woke us up. Thankfully, morning finally arrived (I woke up wedged in between the two inflatable mats we had under our sleeping bags) and we got up to have tea and read while the sun slowly started to warm the forest.

"Good morning! Did you sleep well?"

It is the end of the summer and time to get back to school. Starbucks Coffee is already serving Pumpkin Spice Lattes and winter is just around the corner. I'm so glad I got to spend a weekend outside like this and can't wait to do it again next summer!