Summer is here and a few years back I read about Adult Summer Camps. I didn’t pay much attention to the Adult Summer Camp craze because I was too busy being, you know, a parent. Besides, I’ve done my fair share of camping, backpacking, and attending summer camps as a young Boy Scout and also as a Boy Scout troop leader. Oh, and don’t forget my trips to various Girl Scout camps with my daughter as well. So you can imagine, I’m not too interested in sleeping a musty old cabin eating bad food at the dining hall as an adult because we now have an Adult Summer Camp opportunities abound.
So, you see, the idea of Adult Summer Camp doesn’t really appeal to me. However, I can see that it is a great idea because it already exists and someone is making some money. However, I believed these “summer camps” are called business conventionsand trade shows and held in places like hotels. Usually you have to attend because your job requires you to. Or you could go for pleasure and attend something like Comicon. You know, a place where you can dress up in a costume just like you do on Halloween. There is nothing wrong with that. It is a hobby and hobbies are something you enjoy doing and I strongly encourage you to attend a convention if you want to. I just don’t understand why someone wants to head out to the woods and go back to summer camp. I’d much rather head to a hotel and enjoy the pool and spa services.
Of course, I’m a fool for not cashing in on the Adult Summer Camp craze. I know a number of experts (aka friends) that could assist me in creating a new summer camp. If someone wants to pay me to attend a summer camp, who am I to stop them?
What courses would I offer? The list is endless!
Lawn Mowing and Lawn Care
Complaining & Whining
How to Fail
Drone Flying (and Crashing!)
Home Beer Brewing (and its sister course Beer Drinking)
How to Be Depressed in Your Life without Mental Illness
Boating and Floating
Scotch and Whisky Drinking
Pretty much whatever you can imagine, we could offer it as a course. I could rent some old summer camp, set up some old army tents, get some retired school cook for my mess hall, and we would have our summer camp up and running in no time. Daily Field trips to the local pub for inspiration would be a must. Hands on experience (like painting my house) with a touch of reality (see my highly regarded course “How to Fail”).
I know you are dying to sign up. For only $1499 per week, this summer camp experience can be yours. You can send me cash anytime. I promise to save your spot for you.
Have a great idea for a course? Want to be a part of a winning team (or you need a job for the summer)? Let me know! Frankly, I need all the help I can get.
Lately, we have been getting some good heavy snowfalls in the mountain regions of the Puget Sound area. Today we were excited to set off for Paradise (Elevation: 5400 feet), on Mt. Rainier, for a play day in the snow. Do some snowshoeing, perhaps even build a snow cave or even an igloo.
The drive to Paradise isn’t too bad if the road is clear. You enter the Mt. Rainier National Park though the Longmire gate entrance. However, with the recent snowfall, and then having the temperatures rise back up a bit, plus you add some rain and you have a great situation for avalanches. The park service is pretty good at keeping the road closed if it should be closed (due to dangerous conditions). The National Park Service (NPS) also requires you to have tire chains even if you have a vehicle with all wheel drive or four wheel drive.
We were just outside of Elbe, when we decided we had better check the National Park Service’s Twitter feed and discovered that the road to Paradise from Longmire was closed. Oh well. Drive an hour or so to discover you can’t get into Rainier National Park. But then again, that is the nature of winter weather.
We are hoping to return to Mt. Rainier National Park over the next few weeks if possible.
At the end of June and beginning of July, our Boy Scout Troop headed down to Camp Meriwether located near Tillamook, Oregon. This was our third year there and this was probably my last Boy Scout summer camp. It was a bittersweet trip. Sure, I complain about summer camp and how the kids behave, their lack of good hygiene, and the sleeping conditions (hey, it’s not my comfortable bed at home). Don’t get me started about how far I have to walk to use a shower or flush toilet. But it is Boy Scout camp; not a hotel on Kauai.
This being my final summer camp, I had a pretty mellow attitude. I gave all the scouts and adult leaders (of our troop) custom paracord bracelets (made by one of our scouts) as a gift. I believe most of the scouts liked them. Of course, one of the older scouts took his apart to make a clothesline. So much for my $6 gift lasting forever and bringing fond memories of camp back to him. I found this was a bit annoying considering how long it takes to make the bracelet and that I paid for it.
Of all the times we have gone to Camp Meriwether, we have had some great weather. Cool and comfortable during the evening, not a lot of bugs (due to our campsite location), and not blazing hot during the day. Meanwhile back in the Seattle area, they had record high temperatures and it was uncomfortable. Sometimes, it is nice to get out of town.
Highlights: The scouts had fun building sand castles during the beach party. Some of the scouts and leaders did the Polar Bear swim on Thursday morning. I averaged 22,000 steps per day and didn’t have my daily ice cream thanks to my friend Dan who was on a “camp diet”.
Overall, it was the best summer camp I have been to as a leader. It makes me almost want to go back next summer….almost.
This coming weekend I’m headed out on a 3 Day/30 mile Boy Scout backpacking trip outside of Darrington, WA. We will be hiking the Pilot Ridge Hike picked by one of my senior scouts (who runs cross country and is in great shape). So you can imagine, I’m a little concerned about the least fit members of our backpacking trip. I’ve nicknamed it Anthony’s Death March in his honor.
The weather conditions this coming weekend will be sun and showers on Friday, with mostly clear skies on Saturday and Sunday. I’m not too worried about the weather. I’m more worried about the actual hiking and backpacking. The elevation gain and loss on this hike is quite a bit. The bonus of sleeping outside two nights on the hard ground is also a big draw. Hmm, nice hard ground instead of my soft bed. Gee, I can’t wait.
I’m not too worried about the backpacking part except for my backpack will be much larger than my day pack. You have to carry everything you need for three days. At least it is summer time here so I can carry less of my backup gear. I still carry all of the Ten Essentials…plus #11 Toilet Paper and #12 Duct Tape.
I don’t have a problem hiking. In fact, I did some high elevation hiking in Colorado in July. But backpacking is a lot different than car camping. You don’t have a nice established campsite with easy access to water and flush toilets. Camping in the backcountry is you, out there in the wilderness, making sure you have enough food and water for your entire stay. You have to be prepared. You need a decent shelter, food, water, a water filter/pump, and a handy dandy Hello Kitty LED flashlight.
When I was younger, I loved to do backpacking and camping. I still enjoy being outside hiking; the backpacking part isn’t as appealing as it once was. I’m older and sleeping on the ground just isn’t that enjoyable.
Needless to say, I’m looking forward to doing a backpacking trip with my son. We have gone camping a lot as a family and on numerous Boy Scout camping trips. This will be a fun final trip before he gets his Eagle Scout rank.
Do you have any fun day hikes or backpacking trips planned?
A Happy Mother’s Day to all the awesome moms that take the time to read my blog; I do appreciate you taking the time away from your kids to read my words of wisdom (or rather my Blog of Worthless Advice). Of course, by reading your blog you are really just learning how to be an even better mother than before, right?
Well, it probably has been a month since I last posted something; which is just plain awful. I was swamped with work (and still am) so I’ve put a lot of projects on the back burner. Then, when I do have free time, I’ve been working on Boy Scout projects or hikes. In fact, last month we did a service project and managed to get in a hike. I’ve decided to include my Girl Scout troop in on these hikes and the girls do just. Our last hike was on May 2 to Taylor Mountain here in King County. I thought it was going to be between 3 to 5 miles but we logged in 8.65 miles on a wonderfully sunny Pacific Northwest day! You can’t complain when you get a great hike in!
I’m still behind on my work, but I’m fairly confident, I can catch up this week. Of course, this is what I say every week. But again, I think I can do it this week. It’s all about positive thinking, right?