Do you ever feel like it’s been months since you laughed? Sometimes, I wake up and realize that I’ve been taking life way too seriously for too long and man, I need a good laugh!
Hiking and camping adventures are novel spaces that give us memorable moments to be shared around a dinner table or another campfire. No memory was ever made sitting on a couch watching series. Go outside! Enjoy the thrill of being in nature, with others, having fun, making mistakes and learning to laugh at yourself.
Here are a few hiking and camping stories we can all learn from:
Her mama never raised a quitter:
I don’t think Rebekah will ever hike again with seasoned, well-trained hikers. After arriving at camp, the group set up a tent and planned to have an early night for an early start the next morning.
There is nothing like rain, more like a drenching downpour while you're camping and waking up at 3 am to vomit… substantially, to bring one to face reality. Rebekah comes to the chilling conclusion that this hike is not going to be as fun as she anticipated.
For hours she dragged what felt like her corpse up the mountain, repeating to herself that her mama never raised a quitter! She was NOT going home! Even though the “flat hike” she was promised turned into a mountain climbing expedition with vertical rock faces and chains used to pull yourself up.
As she heaved her tired body up the mountain she became aware of everything in her heavy backpack that didn't need to be there... and things that needed to be there that weren't. Retrospect helps us gain wisdom. We learn small lessons that have a great impact in retrospect, like nursing severe sunburn after forgetting to pack sunscreen.
As a novice hiker, she was pushed over her limits to finish this strenuous hike (that should have taken 6 hours) in 5 and a half hours, with nausea and a weak body. Tenacious, resolute Rebekah – we applaud you!
Hiking Lessons From Rebekah:
- Backpacks can be heavy.
- Sunscreen is an essential.
- Always check for spiders before pulling down your pants on a toilet break.
- Pack Dramamine.
The time nature tried to kill her
Lorna spent some time as an intern at a Wilderness Training School. They were sent off to climb mountains to fix erosion barriers cleverly disguised as steps. A valuable lesson was learned on this particular trip up the mountain regarding the wearing of correct footwear.
A comedy of errors begins as her flimsy shoe gets wedged into a tight space, heel down and toe up, setting her completely off balance. As her arms start frantically flailing to regain her balance, she begins a rapid descent going for Olympic gold in backward somersaults. She gets air and is thrown through a patch of stinging nettles. After a body engulfing stinging sensation, she realizes what has stopped her descent. Feet to the sky, wondering how … just how she finds the only thorn tree in the vicinity to stop her fall.
Taking the gauntlet to show Jane off to Tarzan
Another time, on an interns’ weekend, they were all chilling by the waterfall when someone encourages Lorna to get up and swing on the “Tarzan rope” over the waterfall. Never one to back down from a dare, Lorna takes on the gauntlet of a pathway to the rope: a muddy path, down a rock, and through a tree! Holding onto the tree with one hand and attempting to take the rope with the other hand, Lorna misses it entirely falling face-first into the rock below, she slides down the rock face and ends up floating … lifeless … in the pool below. Lorna 0, Concussion 1.
Hiking Lessons From Lorna
- Wear appropriate footwear.
- Invest in a helmet.
- If you’re offered truth or dare, take truth.
That time Jean wore mud as a hiking fashion accessory
Jean and her daughter Mandy decided to try out a “short” forest walk together in very cold temperatures. Their short uneventful ramble took on some changes when the pathway became riddled with thick, slimy mud which they had to hike through.
Looking down at the terrain and being careful about where they’re walking, they completely miss the pathway they should have taken to return from their stroll. A debacle of gigantic proportions ensued as they tried to find their way back. What should have been a short walk to the river ended up with crawling through two barbed wire fences, crisscrossing on private land, falling into a muddy stream, and crawling yet again through another gate until three hours later, they find their way home. Anyone for a hot shower?
Hiking Lessons From Jean:
- Maps are helpful hiking buddies.
- Navy seal leopard crawl training could be advantageous in seemingly harmless country settings.
Lessons for campers
Camping Lessons From Toni
- When camping inland in winter, one needs to replace the ice with water before boiling the kettle.
- An inflatable mattress and towels are multi-use items when one has forgotten to pack blankets.
- Always check that the tent is completely intact before embarking on a camping trip with a hired camping trailer.
- Camping in the rain without a tent roof might result in name-calling, blame-shifting, or angry silence. You pick.
Camping Lessons From Natalie
- Drying underpants on a tent rope is a great way to keep monkeys occupied.
- “PRAY against mosquito’s” instead of “SPRAY against mosquito’s” is one command you should question if you have hearing problems.
- When you’re in darkest Africa, always check your hamburger buns for cockroaches.
- When someone has been wearing the same pair of plastic shoes for days, never let them remove their shoes in the vehicle if you’re still intending to breathe.
- If you weigh more than the average person, your boondocks poop hole may need to be more than 5 x 5-inches for aiming purposes.
And there you go! Lessons learned.