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Old 09-27-2009, 07:27 PM   #1
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Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 1,155

Back to tent camping for a night

Did the Webelo's woods camping event with my youngest this weekend at Camp Wanockset in Dublin, NH. Thanks to all those who gave us some ideas for foil pack recipes, there will be food photos later!

The day started off cold and sunny, at around 32 and frosty. We had warm sleeping bags and the trusty LL Bean tent for shelter, with the coolers packed and ready to go with some simple foods and refillable water bottles. For the most part, everything fit in the two backpacks, with the exception of my not taking the time to attach the sleeping bags because we were running out of time to meet another family. Did my best to get everything into a backpack so Matt would start to get used to that idea instead of the "car camping" or trailer camping we do all the time. Lots of parents brought large coolers and tons of stuff for just one night.

Here's our LL Bean tent on the platform:

Once settled in we went to the lake area for opening ceremonies and to watch the older kids practice with the potato canon (don't try that at home kids!). Then on to Forestry class for the kids for 3 hours, check out the slice of the Sequoia tree in the dining hall. That outer white ring near the bark has 85 annual growth rings in it. We all lost count, but there are several hundred years of growth rings in that slab and it's considered a small redwood:

Matt went to wait in line for the rock climbing wall activity later in the afternoon;

but after spending 45 minutes in line and not getting much closer we decided to head back and start the fire for cooking in the early evening.

Our neatly wrapped, triple layered foil packs with ham, onion and potatoes just sizzling away:

Matt was pretty psyched to dig in, the aroma of cooking foil packs was getting us hungry:

After getting our fill, and then spending some relaxing hours around the fire while the kids caused general mayhem and mischief, we drifted off to sleep to the sounds of nature (also known as a bunch of uncomfortable, middle aged men snoring like bears). Along around 3:00 am the temperature had dropped to about 45 degrees and the rain came down. Not just a shower, but a very steady downpour that did not stop all day. So what do you do if your a tired, cold ten year old who hears the sound of rain on the tent? You do like everyone else and pull the covers over your head and keep sleeping:

So here's where things kind of fell apart. I had intended to get photos of the morning, but my new waterproof camera had a dead battery. I stuck with my trusty old cheap Nikon that I use for work which never dies, but would not survive the downpour. I had brought the 35 year old single burner stove and used it the night before, but did not take the time to light it in the morning due to the need to pack in the heavy rain. We were scheduled for second seating at breakfast (the place was packed). By the time 8:30 rolled around our camp area was all packed, cleaned and passed inspection and we headed to the dining hall like a pack of wet dogs. However, all the first seating folks had decided to enjoy their dry dining hall and there was no room for us. Having gone two hours past my normal time for coffee, we decided to head on out and get some coffee on the road. The kids did well on the packing, but were not going to take standing in the rain outside a packed dining hall for very long, and neither was I.

It was great and I'm looking forward to many more. This camp allowed folks to bring small stoves for food prep, so there were quite a few others there with them, so I'll get a shot of that stove yet!
There is nothing more depressing than editing your signature line to remove a countdown sticker and have no new trips planned to replace with a fresh countdown ;-(
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Old 09-28-2009, 10:27 AM   #2
I squealed really loud!!
I got one on my camper too
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Madison, AL
Posts: 12,852

Looks like fun!!!

Gosh those days seem just like yesterday!!
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Old 09-28-2009, 10:34 AM   #3
Throwing some love to TCD
They are full and clean!
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Dunedin, FL
Posts: 4,957

Great report. I ate a lot of those foil meals back in my Scouting days. It's great that you took your son on this trip. I have many happy memories of my BSA camping trips, and many of them were disasters from any objective standpoint.

I am amazed that it was so cold for you. I was in Tallahassee on Saturday and about had heat stroke.

Fall has not arrived in Florida yet.

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Old 09-28-2009, 11:33 AM   #4
Probably going to be useless trying to sleep
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Kennesaw, GA
Posts: 560

Great Stuff.

This Saturday, my oldest will get his Eagle. One of my fondest memories was his first Webelos Woods when it got down into the teens.

Looks like you had a great time. Be sure to enjoy it, it passes by way too fast!
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