We’ve camped cold before. It is one of our favorite ways to camp, actually, especially along Lake Superior where the cold can be as pristine as the waters of the mighty lake. We’re no strangers to sleeping beneath seven layers, with winter hats protecting the only possible exposure. We kind of like getting up and hearing the ice crackle on the tent as we waddle off to the fire each morning to warm up.
This week was more than we were comfortable with though. Nights were fine, frigid as expected, but we were prepared. The days, though. The days were the deal-breakers. Brr…
Day one wasn’t so bad. We did a little hiking and got ourselves all settled in. And today, tear-down day, was simply glorious. I didn’t put on my parka once. I even shed the sweatshirt and survived in only one layer. But pretty much every moment in between was simply arctic. The north wind howled relentlessly, sapping the comfort even from the campfire. It was just plain cold. No further adjectives necessary.
It was still a good trip, despite the exhaustion of shivering the days away. We got out there a few days and hiked through the wind, rain and snow, doing our best to keep up with the changing face of the skies. We huddled in close and went through more firewood than seemed possible. We relied on more warm meals than we’ve ever crammed into 5 days, and we were grateful for every one.
Our final excursion of the year wasn’t what we bargained for, but we made the best of it, and I can say that it was a good one. Plenty of blessings to count. For a start:
#10: I read a whole book. I dig that.
#9: Gooseberry Falls was gushing higher than we’ve seen it in quite a few years. Made for a nice visit.
#8: We made it through the journey without a single flat tire or the need for any other in-site truck repairs.
#7: Tasty food, warm hats, good company.
#6: The same clear skies that ushered in the frigid air also brought intense starry nights and some nice Northern Light sightings.
#5: Some rain, but no deluges testing the integrity of our trusty tent.
#4: Local Air Force base was deep into maneuvers, so those Northern Lights were studded with some pretty cool firefly effects!
#3: No zippers requiring duct-tape assistance. A low red-neck week.
#2: Not one kid (or adult) got sick, even in the deep freeze.
#1: We tore down the first DRY tent of the year! Always a thrill beyond measure.
May your next camping trip be filled with joy and warm mittens,
* Photos courtesy of Emily