How Not to Camp
How Not to Camp Guideline
**This guideline for how NOT to camp came about purely out of laziness – not for lack of outdoor skills **
My boyfriend and I decided we wanted to take a short road trip to the eastern side of my state. I work during the week and he works Monday – Saturday which leaves us not very much time for any kind of trip. We decided we would leave Saturday afternoon after he got off work, drive the 3.5 hours to Gatlinburg, camp for the night, get up early to visit Cades Cove, head into Gatlinburg to eat, drink and walk around before driving back that afternoon.
Seeing as it was only one night of camping, we didn’t do much planning at all. By at all, I mean zero planning. Besides looking up the address of the campgrounds, taking a tent, sleeping bag, food and drinks – we did nothing.
The thing is – we both are campers. We knew what we needed and didn’t need, we just simply thought – eh, we can deal without anything for one night.
We were at a campsite and weren’t doing any primitive camping here, so obviously it wasn’t a matter of safety but let’s just say we didn’t take nearly what we needed.
If you want to do camping incorrectly, just follow these simple guidelines:
1. Forget the flashlight. Or, any light source for that matter.
We didn’t purposely say screw the flashlight. I always keep one of the large maglites in my car for lighting purposes and it makes a really good weapon. However, for some reason it had been taken out of the car before this and I didn’t know that until we got there. No lights while trying to eat, look for firewood, make a fire, or do absolutely anything at all for that matter is not an easy task.
2. Forget firewood and/or lighter fluid.
We have firewood at home. I kept saying, “Don’t let me forget the firewood.” We forgot the firewood.
3. Skip looking for firewood to go explore.
We got there with plenty of light left to find firewood. Do you think we used that time to do so? Nope. I wanted to go do a quick loop through Cades Cove to see the sunset and any wildlife that may or may not be around. I think we saw one deer.
4. Forget eating utensils & be forced to use large knives to make peanut butter & jelly sandwiches.
Yep, we definitely used two very large knives – about 6 inches long a piece – to make our sandwiches. We forget the eating utensils, but we do have large knives with us everywhere we go. Makes perfect sense.
5. Give up on making fire or seeing anything in the dark. Take drinks into tent. Drink until you fall asleep. End up soaking tent and sleeping bag in peach flavored gin.
Once the fire wouldn’t stay lit no matter what we tried (since we forgot the lighter fluid) and we had no light to do anything else, we decided to just take our drinks into the tent and talk until we fell asleep. Worked quite well, until we woke up because one of us (I won’t name any names) knocked over said drink and soaked everything. Now, everything has a lovely peach aroma.
Even though it was frustrating at the time, it was all pretty fun and humorous. We obviously would have gone more prepared if it were more than just one night.
Have you ever forgotten something essential on a camping trip or any trip for that matter? What do you do when things go wrong – get angry or just laugh it off?