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Anyone into tent camping?

Discussion in 'The Great Outdoors' started by Blowtorch, May 31, 2017.

  1. Blowtorch

    Blowtorch Familiar Face

    To me the only real camping is tent camping.
    It's been awhile, I'm hoping to get out and at it this season.
    Anyone else into tent camping?
    totallyfrozen likes this.
  2. Three to four times a year on average, one full week and then smaller long weekend trips I guess and the odd night when an extra activity is thought of. November is very cold so I only do one night then and in early May the early bird song is rather loud but great to hear.

    My camps are not as glamours as Renault's trips however it is great to get out. Depending on the time and weather I always use my Roorkhee chair, safari camp bed, roe deer hide rug/mat and kuksa. There are somethings that you cannot camp without! Unless it is real backwoods camping and weight is key.
  3. Absolutely! We were away this past Victoria Day holiday weekend (Canada) for three nights. The weather wasn't the greatest, but it was a nice break. It was a local park, and we hope to do the legendary Algonquin Park in the summer; we have not been since 2014.
  4. Blowtorch

    Blowtorch Familiar Face

    I've found hammocks to be indispensable camping gear
    Last edited: May 31, 2017
    MisterCairo likes this.
  5. PeterGunnLives

    PeterGunnLives One of the Regulars

    There's nothing like the great outdoors.
    I haven't actually camped in years, but I wouldn't mind a real camping trip in the middle of nowhere; not in some public campground where you're surrounded by other groups of campers. :p
  6. I'm trying very hard to get into tent-based auto camping as a part of my club. My goals look something like this:

    greatestescaper and Mr. Godfrey like this.
  7. Blowtorch

    Blowtorch Familiar Face

    Quick story- my sons and I camped on Rock Island WI a few years back. You have to take two ferries to get there; no cars allowed on Rock Island, so you've got to pack everything in. No crowded campground there.

    Around 1 AM our second night there I awoke to distant thunder, we were camped a very short distance from the shoreline, so I walked down there. It was an awesome and somewhat fearsome sight, watching lightning paint a third of the boundless horizon of Lake Michigan in white fire, as the thunder rolled, still distant but very ominous. I watched and listened for awhile, and thought about how our carefree vacation plans were about to take a bit of a turn. There was no shelter to go to, and nothing to do but weather the storm out.

    Once the monsoon hit us, I spent a good part of that night holding our small tent up and off us and also held on to keep it from blowing right away, as the winds howled and the rain beat down mercilessly. The thunder cracked so loudly you would swear we were right up in the stormclouds, at the very point of origin of all the racket.

    It stormed on and off the few days we were there, the locals said it was the worst they'd seen in over 10 years.

    It was miserable. And wonderful.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2017
  8. Big Cat

    Big Cat New in Town

    I LOVE tent camping. To me it is camping at its core. Rough and unpretentious. Sure, campers, RVs, motor homes are all fine and dandy for what they are but what they are not if often over looked. And that is camping. Disagree if you will, but cooking and sleeping and watching DVDs on a flat screen AIN'T camping. That is just living somewhere else, comfortably, temporarily, often away from home somewhere more scenic than home.

    I used the same Coleman 4 man tent for the last 15 years, multiple times each summer and fall in the Colorado Rockies. It finally gave up the ghost last summer. I replaced it with another tent. As I am getting older however I am starting to see and more importantly understand the value of NOT sleeping on the ground. Back aches come more easily these days. I am restricted to what I can do though as my 2 door jeep Wrangler will not pull anything other than the smallest pop up camper. A pop up camper is almost true camping... ;)

    So yes, OP, I am certainly into tent camping. In fact, in early September I'll be tent camping in Colorado around 9500 feet above sea level for 6 nights. I can hardly wait.
    Mr. Godfrey likes this.
  9. Bushman

    Bushman Call Me a Cab

    There's no camping like a tent, a tarp, and a sleeping bag. I'll never camp any other way.
    totallyfrozen and Mr. Godfrey like this.
  10. Two weeks ago we did four nights and five days in Algonquin Park. Tent, of course. Mind you, it was "car camping", and we hope to go back country via canoe next year. Our daughters will be old enough we think to tough it out!

    Pics when able.
    Mr. Godfrey likes this.
  11. Sounds good Mister Cairo

    I have just had 4 nights in Devon next to Dartmoor and the weather was great, then 7 nights in Staffordshire Cannock Chase mixed weather but mainly good, mind you the flies this year, felt like being Australia!. Then 4 nights in Cornwall and the rain was really heavy half way erecting the tent, fun!

    My daughter enjoyed absailing down an old quarry but gave corricaling a miss, I found it rather fun but canoe or kayak is better. Also the sea in Cornwall did not seem that cold when surfing.

    Best bit though, is I heard a nighjar and then I was lucky to spot one flying and that bit was a first for me. Also one night there were three owls calling and rather loud and all around the tent about 01:30 now you only really get that under canvas.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2017
  12. I hear what you are saying Big Cat I have to say I now use an inflatable sleeping mat on a safari cot bed to ease the back issue. Quite happy to rough it on the floor when needed but it aches for the next few days when back at work so I found this just easier. No good for hiking but I tend to travel with the family and my landrover these days so I carry it in the car. That way I can carry my Roorkhee chair and deer hide rug too.

    Never tried a hammock but that may be a lightweight option.
  13. Big Cat

    Big Cat New in Town

    Mr. Godfrey,

    I have used a large cot with an inflatable sleeping pad before and it works quite well. I can only do this when I'm camping by myself as it takes up so much room in the tent there's no room for anyone else. I will be using this configuration again middle of October and you are correct, takes all the stress off the back and is rather comfortable.
    That is certainly a car camping item. In my twenties when backpacking I would use a Thermarest camp mat and I was comfortable, but that 3/4 inch sleeping pad does me no good these days. The sleeping pad I currently use is a three and a half inch REI brand inflatable sleeping pad that actually maintains an R factor of 7. Definitely the cat's meow these days. But again, not for backpacking. Since the bulk of my camping is done at 9000 feet above sea level in the Colorado Rockies, that extra insulating property is necessary.

    It's hard to enjoy the first cup of cowboy coffee at daybreak while gazing upon a misty mountain valley if your back is aching.
    Mr. Godfrey likes this.
  14. I still have a foam sleeping mat but my hips would never forgive me should I use it in anger. I would use it if I had to hike rather than drive. That or gather bracken, heather or leave as insulation and a bed then sleep under a tarp or shelter. But I find it takes quite a while to gather enough for depth of 18 inches for good insulation.

    October and 9000 feet you need something to keep that body heat from the ground that's for sure.

    Happy camping to you sir.
    belfastboy likes this.
  15. After an adult life of camping, and bike touring my wife requested an upgrade to a motorhome. For the last 3 years we have been touring the western US in our 25' RV. I must admit I upgraded under mild protest but.... I love it. It gets us out into wonderful places in comfort. At this late point in my life I appreciate comfort.
    Mr. Godfrey likes this.
  16. My wife just asked me to post that she just had a hot shower in our own shower. No more sponge baths out of a basin perched on a tree stump
    Mr. Godfrey likes this.
  17. Yup!!
    It's the only "real" camping IMO other than improvised shelter camping. Lodges, cabins, and RVs are not camping.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  18. Big Cat

    Big Cat New in Town

    Funny story...

    About 10 years ago I was speaking with an older gentleman whom I had recently met at a social function when I found out he likes to trout fish and camp. And by older I mean over 80 years old. He and his wife would take their fifth wheel to Colorado every summer and "rough it" while trout fishing. Normally that was their modus operandi however the previous summer with his eyesight failing he did not feel like trying to tow a fifth wheel the 700 miles to their normal camping location so they opted to tent camp. He told me he very much enjoyed nine nights in a tent close to 10,000 feet above sea level.

    At that time I had seriously been considering upgrading from a tent to a pop-up camper. When my friend who is about 40 years my senior described how much he enjoyed roughing it on the ground for those nine nights I kind of dismissed the idea about the pop-up camper as it put things in perspective. Although I had been excited about the possibility of graduating to something where I can sleep off the ground, I realized it wasn't necessary and perhaps was a little put in my place his story. Or maybe I just found an excuse to not have to spend the money on a camper. :)

    Eventually I got myself off the ground with the purchase of a cot and an additional sleeping pad and have found that generally that suffices quite nicely if I can have the tent to myself. There is however something almost primal about sleeping on the ground. And it certainly feels primal about 2 hours into it in my lower back anymore.

    Tent camping is simple and inexpensive and I find it extremely relaxing being in a tent in a light rain. You can't quite get the same feel/experience in a camper. ( although you might be able to stay warmer and drier;)).

    I will take my argument one step farther for choosing a tent over a camper. It's easy to fix a tent with duct tape. :p

    All this being said, if I want my wife to accompany me in the future I'm going to have break down and buy a camper. And she has some mighty fine ideas about traveling and camping. Moreover I don't think any of these ideas involve her worrying about sleeping in bear country with one millimeter of nylon between her and Mr Bear.

    Once I return from my Colorado Excursion in September I will post pictures of my tent campsite.

  19. But surely that's the romance of camping or safari! I do hope the basin was a folding canvas one.
  20. I think both tent, caravan and RV all have their place and I guess if I had time and money I would use all three. However a tent has all that sense of exciment and adventure I had and longed for as a boy (I just find it hard to grow up :) ) Being in a gale in a tent with it moving around like mad not knowing if you are going to have get up and venture out to replace Guy ropes, etc true you get very little sleep but you do feel so alive.

    Also when on a good hike you set up a tarp, set down to sleep, I heard my first nightjar like that, you do feel connected more with nature.

    Like big cat my only problem is old age and the aches and pains that comes with being on such a hard surface so my compromise is the cot and mat to allow me to enjoy the benefits of being under canvas. And true you cannot beat gaffer tape.
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2017

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