Sunday, September 6, 2009

Would you do it again??

Hidden Lake photo courtesy of Madison

That was the question of the weekend. We went on our first backpacking adventure with the girls. Our good friends came along with their 2 kids to make quite the expedition of kids ages 7, 5, 4 and 2. Along the journey we would often ask each other "would you do it again" to gauge the fun factor. My last backpacking attempt was 13 years ago and was not a success at all. After that I doubted if I would ever want to go backpack camping again. But I felt it was important to give it another go. Especially now that I am much more outdoor savvy than I was 13 years ago and we have access to the REI supply closet for all the newest and best gear we could possibly need.

The weather was questionable at best and almost stopped the trip before it started. But we figured that was what gortex is for. At the worst, we could hike in and have dinner and then hike home. But once we got to the campspot the weather was clearing up a bit and we even had a bit of blue skies so the tents went up and camp was set. Yes, the Kimmet tent is the giant one. Technically not a light and small backpacking tent but it was nice and roomy for this family. The space was especially appreciated at 7:30 in the morning when it was pouring rain and we were able to eat breakfast inside the tent.

We did have an unfortunate accident when Levi fell on a rock and got a deep cut on his chin. So our friends had to pack the kids out in the dark to go to urgent care for stitches. We missed having them around for the entire trip and look forward to doing it again with them with no complications.
So even with questionable weather and injury, the answer to the question if YES YES YES I will definitely do it again. The camper has been great for getting out and exploring new places but I never really feel it is real camping. There is a bit too much convenience and people and not enough "roughing it" and the great outdoors. Especially as the girls get older I see us moving more towards tent camping and backpacking our gear into all sorts of amazing locations. It felt so great to be out camping where there was no noise but the wind in the trees, rain in the lake and crickets chirping. The girls did an amazing job hiking in with their packs (it was a very short 1 mile hike but was good for a first attempt) and stayed easily entertained finding "jewels", climbing rocks and exploring nature. We will certainly still get use out of the camper as it provides an easy and cheap vacation opportunity. I hope we can balance the two with a bit of both styles for the best of both worlds.
Now, I must admit that the question really needs to be asked to Tom since he did the HUGE majority of the work. Packing up the gear, setting up camp, cooking on the camp stove, taking down camp..... So before I commit to a handful of outings I should probably make sure he is onboard for this as much as I am!!

1 comment:

Amy said...

Looks like fun, despite the rain!