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Face Off! (Less Serious) > RA Says Camping Blows! What do you say?

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message 1: by RandomAnthony (last edited Aug 21, 2009 06:16AM) (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments Jackie said recently she's going camping with her family soon. Someone in my neighborhood tried to organize a "neighborhood camping trip". We have a tent in my backyard sometimes. Camping talk is popping up in my late summer life.

I'm just going to say it right now. I don't want to camp. Ever. I want to stay in a hotel room, at worst, but I don't want to sleep on the ground and I don't want to cook over a little campfire and I don't want to pretend I'm having some deep and meaningful nature experience when all I'm doing is hauling some shit into the woods, setting it up, hanging out, taking it down, and driving home again.

I do pee in the woods while hiking, though. So I hope that counts as a meaningful nature experience.

What do you think about camping?

message 2: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments dude i cook porkchops on a rock:


nuff said?

message 3: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments You can cook pork chops on a stove, too, you know. That's why stoves were invented.

message 4: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments sure, and you probably want to use a pan too

message 5: by Heidi (last edited Aug 21, 2009 06:35AM) (new)

Heidi (heidihooo) | 10825 comments I LOVE camping!

I like sitting out under the stars and conversing with friends until we start nodding off in our chairs. I like falling asleep to the crickets and tree frogs and other sounds that can only be experienced at night in the outdoors. I like waking up to the smell of dewy grass and the muffled sounds of the people whispering in the next tent.

One of my fave parts of the camping experience, though, is when I get home where I can take a shower and sleep in my bed between my sheets. Sometimes it takes a little uprooting to appreciate your personal comforts. It brings that appreciation to a whole new level.

message 6: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments Maybe it's because I live out near cows, but I can hear crickets, etc. in my backyard. But then again I didn't like camping when I lived in Chicago, either...

message 7: by Richard (new)

Richard | 347 comments Camping is like taking a dump on the doorstep of civilization. The logic evades me entirely. Why work your arse off to surround yourself with all sorts of creature comforts and then leave them all behind when you finally have the time to enjoy them to the full? I don't want to wait in line to use the bathroom. I don't want to make love and sleep on a semi-inflated mattress with spiders crawling over my butt. I don't want to be transformed into Stephen Hawking as I sit in a stupid chair trying to read under a light that not only hisses but also attracts every insect in a three-mile radius. I don't like the scent of humid canvas. I detest the sound of endless zippers. And I hate washing up.

That said, I don't mind camping above the tree line in the Pyrenees, for example, but only because there are no other alternatives. (Those heli-drop outfits don't do pick-ups apparently.)

PS: Hope you're all well. Resuming cover.

message 8: by Heidi (new)

Heidi (heidihooo) | 10825 comments RandomAnthony wrote: "Maybe it's because I live out near cows, but I can hear crickets, etc. in my backyard. But then again I didn't like camping when I lived in Chicago, either..."

I don't have a backyard. Consider yourself lucky.

message 9: by Heidi (new)

Heidi (heidihooo) | 10825 comments Hi Richard. :)

message 10: by Félix (new)

Félix (habitseven) I gave up camping several many years ago. I will go back to it when civilization collapses, and I have no choice.

message 11: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments richard - good to hear your thoughts again. always interesting and humorous

for me, most of camping is being with the people i like to be with. camping brings out some great convo, stories and laughter. this lack of comfort seems to add to this. plus campfires usually accompany camping and i think i have made myself clear concerning how i feel about fire

message 12: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments bun, was that in this lifetime or a previous one?

message 13: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments i was in Mauritania a few years back and they do a camel caravan across the salt flats on the sahara that looked totally cool. i would love to do that (if i started winning lotteries)

message 14: by Félix (new)

Félix (habitseven) Camels don't look comfortable at all.

message 15: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments bun - it sounds awesome. looks so nostalgically romantic. especially after i read Caravans by James Michener. i would totally do it. i will sign you up when i go

message 16: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 13815 comments I love camping. We never camped when I was a kid, but I loved being in the woods. I started camping in college and love it. Foil dinners are about my favorite thing ever. I also like the lack of light pollution, and the sounds.
I'll admit I'm more into car camping than backwoods. Since we never camped when I was little, I never really got comfortable peeing in the woods.
I like driving to a state or national park, putting up a tent, playing some guitar. I like hiking and swimming during the day, and cooking over a campfire afterward.
I love camping just off the beach at Assateague, where you hear pony footsteps in the night, and on the beach in the San Juans, and anywhere within sight of Mt. Ranier, and Zion with the bouncy mule deer, and anywhere on the east coast with a waterfall (Stone Mountain, NC; Cloudland Canyon, GA).
Did I mention I love foil dinners? I love them.

That said, I'm with Bun on the canal trip as well (I want a vacation on a barge in France) and the equitrekking. There are great horseback trips all over the world from a company called Cross Country International. I've been getting their catalogs since I was ten. Someday.

message 17: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments King Dinösaur wrote: "What do I say? I say RA is a big PUSSY!!! :)

I love camping. I love forests. I love dirt. I hate bugs, but I'll deal with 'em."

[standing behind KD:] yeah!

message 18: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments King Dinösaur wrote: "What do I say? I say RA is a big PUSSY!!! :)

Betrayed by a fellow King Diamond fan...

message 19: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments I like being outside. I hike all the time, etc. I just don't like to camp. Now, if you go out to the woods naked with a Bowie knife and a yard of twine and return alive six weeks later, I will bow down to you. But carry all your crap in a car and set up a little camp stove...well...just not my thing.

Jackie "the Librarian" | 8993 comments I hate mosquitoes, I hate stinky toilets, I hate mosquitoes, I hate having to make my way through the woods in the chilly dark to the toilets where there are scary big bugs hovering around the orange lights.

I hate trying to do any kind of elaborate cooking over campfires and camp stoves, but I do like foil dinners and smores. And have I mentioned I hate mosquitoes?

Camping in dry (mosquito free) areas and on beaches can be okay, but overall, I'd rather do a day hike and go home at night.

message 21: by Nuri (last edited Aug 21, 2009 11:02AM) (new)

Nuri (nools) | 538 comments I love camping! -- or at least I did the last time I went, which was. Wow, almost ten years ago. I don't mind the dirt so much (I rather dislike foregoing with the washing), and I, too, am in the Death To All Mosquitoes camp, but one of my favorite sounds ever is river and wind in the trees, and OH! the stars! I also like (for not-terribly-extended periods of time) being forced into the company of family and friends. As long ago as my last camping experience was, I remember a disconcerting freedom in escaping any kind of electronic reception.

It's weird, but there are, in fact, more things a person can do with others in the wilderness with absolutely nothing than we are often inclined to sitting side by side with computers in front of us.

message 22: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments exactly nools. we are compelled to communicate

message 23: by Kevin (new)

Kevin  (ksprink) | 11469 comments yeah, if we all were camping together we would be at a major loss without our keyboards and wifi signal :)

Jackie "the Librarian" | 8993 comments I guess it's different for me. Chris' family is so big, and the kids are so noisy, it doesn't really matter whether we're at home with them, or in the woods.

There's always plenty of interaction, but not much communicating going on.

message 25: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 13815 comments These days you also have to fight the encroaching technology in campgrounds. People pull up in giant RVs with satellite reception, and proceed to watch TV all night. It blows my mind.

Jackie "the Librarian" | 8993 comments I don't understand that at all. Why are they bothering to go to a campground to watch tv?

One of the best places I've ever camped is actually in Wisconsin. Devil's Lake, which had some easy trails, not too many bugs, and a wonderful lake to swim in that wasn't freezing cold like the ice melt lakes here in the Washington forests.

message 27: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 13815 comments We used to ride our horses on Weyerhauser land as well. It was posted, but they had a big hill that was supposed to be our evacuation point if the dam in town ever broke, so we figured we could always say that we were just practicing flood drills.

I also once went camping near Mt. Ranier with a bunch of friends who were all international: a Scottish girl, a South African, a Russian and me. We arrived too late to get a permit from the office, but we went ahead and camped anyway. When the ranger came, prepared to fine us for camping without permit, we all babbled at him in assorted languages and accents, until he backed away and told us very slowly that we'd be ok for the night, but the next day we should go back down and get a permit.

message 28: by Sally, la reina (new)

Sally (mrsnolte) | 17320 comments Mod
I ♥ camping. I don't care what RA or Jackie says about dirt and bugs and sleeping on "the floor" I think it is the most fun ever. Sadly, I married a man who is more of the gentle librarian persuasion than the hardy KD type, but 'sok.
I grew up backpacking, 9 miles in, 13 miles out, constant chorus of "how much farther, now?" ringing in my ears. We carried in all our own water and food, a water filter and a stove (whatever, RA, it's better than burning a giant hole in the ground). We'd pack out all our trash and even our poo.
I loved being up on the top of a mountain above tree line, listening to the sound of the wind whooshing through the pines and nothing but a distant airplane to mar the silence.
After you've carried in 20lbs and eaten a pack of dehydrated noodle soup, that sleeping bag is the most comfortable nest in the world.

And like Heidi says, the shower when you finally do get home is AMAZING.

Camping rules.

message 29: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments We took an RV (not ours, my wife's parents') across country for our honeymoon fifteen years ago. That was totally cool, and I have to admit most of the KOA campgrounds were great, but I got to sleep in a cozy RV with a working stove, bathroom, etc. So if by "camping" you mean a "house on wheels", let's camp, people!

If TC went camping I'd be in the nearest coffee shop with internet access looking for local hotels. Jackie and Chris would probably be looking over my shoulder.

We'd pack out all our trash and even our poo.

Conversation over, as far as I'm concerned...

Jackie "the Librarian" | 8993 comments You know, I DID the camping thing. I was a camp volunteer, and then a camp counselor. I've built dozens of campfires, gone hiking with a dozen 8 year olds, made smores, banana boats, biscuits on a stick, biscuits in orange peels, and foil dinners. And I've gotten bit by a zillion mosquitoes.

It's fun, but it's a lot of work, it doesn't seem to get me away from anything I really WANT to be away from. I just don't sleep as well on the ground anymore, either. And I HATE MOSQUITOES. They eat me alive and their bites itch unbearably.

The few times I've camped on beaches, the soft sand and ocean breezes keeping the mosquitoes away had me actually enjoying myself...

message 31: by Félix (new)

Félix (habitseven) Well ... at least we know that Jackie loves mosquitoes.

Jackie "the Librarian" | 8993 comments No, no, Larry. You've got it backwards. The mosquitoes love ME.

message 33: by Félix (new)

Félix (habitseven) What's not to love?

message 34: by RandomAnthony (last edited Aug 21, 2009 01:19PM) (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments It's fun, but it's a lot of work, it doesn't seem to get me away from anything I really WANT to be away from.

Yes. I agree totally, except for the "fun" part. If you have to get out in the woods to "get away from it all", you speak a different language than me. Like I think I said earlier I can hike one of the state parks (and we have a slew of them nearby) or even hike in the city and that helps clear my head and get away from it more than erecting a tent and sleeping on the ground.

I hiked through a wetlands (about two of the seven miles) Wednesday, Jacks, and rued my lack of bug spray...at least I took a few score down in the process of slapping my neck every ten seconds...

Jackie "the Librarian" | 8993 comments I used to use DEET to keep mosquitoes away, until it melted part of my car. It went right through the plastic tray under the radio.

message 36: by RandomAnthony (last edited Aug 21, 2009 01:25PM) (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments It's probably still moving toward the center of the earth...

message 37: by Félix (new)

Félix (habitseven) What an imagination that guy's got.

message 38: by [deleted user] (new)

I prefer a low-budget hotel over camping. I agree that if you go camping, you should camp and not just bring all your luxuries from home and put them in a tent.

Just recently I took myself (and my dog) to a hotel in northern Michigan and we had a nice, relaxing weekend. Just walking the dog, reading, and chilling out. Too bad I can't do that more often.

message 39: by Sally, la reina (new)

Sally (mrsnolte) | 17320 comments Mod
I'm like you, Bun. I guess I just don't taste good to bugs, or something, but I'm rarely bothered by mosquitoes, bees, or even flies.

Except in California they have these mean biting flies that nearly drove me insane!

message 40: by Micheal (new)

Micheal | 38 comments I don't know, I went camping with my uncle and cousins before, but my wife says that it's not camping unless you are 75 miles away from anything and getting chased down by at least 3 cougars. That doesn't sound very good to me. I would say it blows.

message 41: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments Bugs don't usually bother me either. I must smell funny. I have trouble wearing perfume too so that's my theory.

message 42: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 13815 comments I had heard blood type had something to do with it as well. We used to drag my dad hiking because he was a mosquito magnet and when he was with us they would ignore everyone else. I don't often put on bug spray, but I rarely get as bitten as anyone else.

message 43: by Sally, la reina (new)

Sally (mrsnolte) | 17320 comments Mod
"milk protein" = extracted/detected after drinking milk?

message 45: by Jaime (new)

Jaime | 158 comments Ok...I have been busier lately and somehow missed this thread.

Just have to say that I absolutely love camping. I used to go 3-4 times a summer until I was 16. Then four years ago I decided that my friends and I would make a trip. Now its an annual thing. We went about a month ago and had a great time. I love sitting around the fire and chicken cooked over the fire is the best chicken ever.

And as far as the bugs...they werent that bad this year. I get more mosquito bites @ my annual cookout @ my house than we do camping.

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