I did not grow up camping. (I would famously sign up for girl scout camping trips, get all the way to the parking lot, then refuse to get on the bus with everyone else.) NO ONE would mistake me for a tomboy (even though I grew up playing outside most of the time). So when John first started expressing an interest in camping, hiking, and backpacking our junior year of college, my first thought was, oh HECK no. No, thank you. You go do your thing; I’m great right here.
However, a hallmark of our relationship has always been quality time together. We do almost EVERYTHING together, minus the eight or so hours per day we’re at our jobs. If John is mowing the lawn, I’m probably out weeding something. If I’m working on stirrers, John is probably researching a trip in the chair beside me. We do have our own interests and hobbies, but we love being together and try to maximize that as much as we can. So this new activity that I was vehemently not interested in caused a tiff between us for awhile… until I eventually gave in :)
And gosh, I’m so glad I did! We’ve had some amazing adventures over the last few years and seen so many beautiful things by traveling on foot and sleeping away from civilization. By far the most impressive was our post-graduation hike in the Presidentials, summitting Mount Adams (the second highest peak in the Northeast!) and Mount Jefferson.
Yes, that photo is showing you we hiked on our own two feet ABOVE the clouds!! The beautiful thing about camping and hiking, though, is that you can have equally fun, challenging, and inspiring experiences closer to home and without as much time commitment (or sweat!). We’ve had some great adventures in North Carolina, too:
These days, we do less backpacking (where we carry everything on our backs and hike out to a campsite) and more car camping (which still involves sleeping in a tent, but there are usually bathrooms and running water and you don’t have to carry all of your supplies with you!). Both are fun; the main trade-off is convenience for breathtaking vistas! If you want to spend quality time with friends, I can’t think of a better bonding experience than sitting around a campfire with no distractions and hours together stretching in front of you. It’s like the grown-up version of a sleepover!
I wonder if any of y’all were surprised when I mentioned camping on EFM for the first time. Either way, I hope my experience encourages you to give camping and hiking a try if you’ve been hesitant in the past!
In my next post, I’ll share some of our camping favorites. Once you have a basic stock of supplies it’s a delightfully inexpensive and beautiful way to travel, but it can be intimidating and expensive when you’re just starting out!