@OldCatLady Hey @katbyter did not bring up snakes. It could be rabbits. I took a group of women backpacking and we came back from looking at a meteor shower to find a small rabbit nestled on one of the women’s sleeping bag (under a tarp, not in a tent).
@moonhat@katbyter@OldCatLady It was a very young, small rabbit and it was nestled on the fluffy sleeping bag sound asleep (it was dark and cold out - late October in the midwest). We crouched around watching it and talking softly and trying to figure out how to put sleeping bags together so the rabbit could stay put (all women’s trip). Unfortunately that woke it up. It was startled, scared and bolted away. I felt bad for it as it was very late at night and clearly it thought it had found the best, most wonderful, cosy place to spend the night. Instead now it had to find somewhere else in the cold and dark, when it was tired.
I used to take people camping for a living. Moose in rut are pretty dangerous (and more so than bears or alligators, poisonous snakes, etc. of which I have encountered all of them more than once). Drunks in the woods are too. Lightening storms above the tree line are pretty scary (been there done that too). Backpacking during hunting season can be scary at times. Avalanches are not good either. Overall though it is more dangerous to DRIVE to the place you will go camping than actually more dangerous than any camping or outdoor adventure activity except going scuba diving in a cave. I am not fond of skunks either.
Or rather, I was; I grew up in the Berkshires at the base of a [very small] mountain. (I don’t know what qualifies as a mountain, but I certainly didn’t think that did. The grownups called it a “mountain,” and who was I to argue?)
On the other side of the mountain was a community of Shakers. Despite sneaking in and looking in their windows, I never in eighteen years of growing up ever laid eyes on one. The kitchen and dining room chairs were moved around now and then, though, and their crops were tended, so I assume they were there.
I loved being in the woods, and liked sleeping there, but because my parents weren’t crazy about that idea, they’d tell me that hippies roamed the woods and would rape me. While I found that quite unsettling, I never came across a hippie in my mushroom hunting, so they didn’t genuinely worry me.
One time I did come across a (not very friendly, scowly) lady in an apron, and told my folks about it. They said, “Oh! That must’ve been one of the Shakers!”
In the woods?! In the woods where I went for lady slippers and mushrooms?! Maybe my folks were mistaken: it wasn’t hippies in the woods, but rather Shakers! That’s who’d rape me while I slept!
That did the trick: worry about Shakers grabbing me in my sleep.
From then on, I slept on the lawn near the barn where my parents could help me when I started screaming because a Shaker had grabbed me and was trying to drag me away to … uh, turn me into a Shaker, I guess.
These days, “camping” consists of staying at friends’ vacation homes. That’s after I ask about the Shaker situation there.
@blaineg@PocketBrain Hmm… I have camped in those temperatures and worse (eg 104 and around 99% humidity). Not as bad if you let yourself get acclimated to the heat (which takes about 3 weeks and a resolve to not crank the A/C; then even 78 degrees seems freezing).
@blaineg@PocketBrain Oh, hell yeah you’re spoiled. I would LOVE to live or camp up in the Rockies. I loved camping when I lived in New England. Down here in Bama…forget it. Heat, humidity, bugs, snakes and a LOT of thorny underbrush in the woods.
@cbraman16 Once in NW Ontario I was north of all the roads kayaking (alone) in the Canadian equivalent of the boundary waters (with respect to a zillion lakes, about a 2 or 3 week paddle from Quetico ). I camped for the night on an island and in the middle of the night heard noises of something rustling in the bushes. Because moose were in rut (they are incredibly dangerous then) I was more than a bit concerned. While it could have been a bear, I was more worried about moose. As I lay in the dark with the sleeping bag over my face (it was cold there in late September - frost on the boat in the morning) I was trying to get up the nerve to go look. Then I finally realized the noise I was hearing was my eyelashes brushing my sleeping bag!!!
@cbraman16 If you go north of Lake Nipigon it is really lovely up there (road ends though so that limits your put in spots). And there are several places you will see pictographs made with some sort of red “paint” including a couple of places where you can see the painter(s) were standing likely in a boat (based on where the pictures were) and using a hand to steady themselves (hand prints on the sides of the picture). Another trip that is cool the Albany River to James Bay (but there are occasional polar bears near and at the end of the trip).
@ManBehindPlan One of the things I enjoy most about riding a motorcycle is you’re out in the world. There’s a whole world of sights, smells and sensations that are completely filtered out by a car, even a car with the windows down. Things like the brief temperature drop when you cross a stream.
I have done more than one portage with a 100 pound pack and 90 pound canoe (17’ grumman aluminum - is yours kevlar?) although more typically it was a 40ish pound pack + canoe - still more than I weighed . That is more than I weigh. Of course I’d stop on occasion to set the bow of the canoe in a Y in tree branches to rest my knees and shoulders. There is no way I could do that now. Working for outward bound we were shadowing a group of 14-16 year olds once on their final expedition (so they were making the decisions, we were there for safety reasons only) and they were SITTING IN THE PORTAGE TRAIL NO LESS AND COULDN’T FIND IT!!! (with aluminum, green and red scrapes on all over the rocks) so decided to portage 7+ miles along a gravel road. OMG it was all we could do to keep our mouths shut about that.
@Kidsandliz@rtjhnstn Yes, that’s a kevlar canoe - we rent from Piragis every time we go to Ely. They turn over the boats and bags every year, so the equipment is fresh. They also supply those 30oz kevlar paddles too.
Of course, all the lightweight gear in the world doesn’t help the fact that I brought too much stuff
I promise - next time I will be thoroughly evaluating the gear I bring.
I want to bring a Scout troop up to Northern Tier sometime, so I can enjoy one of those leading experiences too.
Speaking of finding the portage trail - my buddy who had been on the beach before said they spent 30 mins trying to find the portage to no avail. It goes through a little field before climbing into the woods, so it was likely overgrown. I put a couple of cairns to help the next explorers.
@ManBehindPlan@moondrake For stomach sleeping you need a bridge hammock. I haven’t slept on the ground in the last 30+ nights of camping i’d guess…hammocks are the way to go. Hung at the correct “hangle” and you can lay as flat as you like.
bathrooms. i need my bathroom. i used to go camping with my ex’s family who would go every year and every day i would drive an hour+ back to my house to shower and use the bathroom and then i would drive back to the campsite.
@tightwad because rather than bitch and moan i handled my issue without bothering anyone and got to enjoy all the things i liked about camping and didn’t have to endure the things i hated? no, that had literally nothing to do with why we broke up it was high school, it wasn’t that serious lol.