Each has his or her own reason to go camping or to be drawn to the outdoors. I like to break it down into three main categories: Fun, Adventure, and Sentimentality.
Fun is something that we are familiar with and want to experience again. Perhaps we’ve fallen in love with cooking over a fire, or with a Dutch oven. It could be the opportunity to retest our survival skills. Spend uninterrupted time with family and friends without an hour-by-hour itinerary. It’s fun and can help us unwind from the stresses of life.
Adventure is learning or doing something new. It can be camping itself, star gazing, day hiking, swimming in a lake, whitewater rafting, archery, zip lining or, any of a thousand outdoor activities.
Sentimentality consists of very personal experiences that speak to the soul. Camping provides opportunities to experience nature on a personal level if we will take time to pause, watch, and listen. Do you remember your first time really seeing the stars on a clear night and feeling the grandeur of the universe? For some people, these experiences are necessary for their own peace of mind and well-being to recharge. Camping alone may even give us a deeper appreciation and understanding for what we have at home.
Whatever the reason is for you to go camping, I’m sure it involves some of the three elements listed above.
On a very personal level; I can say that time spent camping with my family has produced bonds that proved valuable as we navigated the roller coaster of teenager years. Discussions we had around the campfire could not, and would not, have happened in an at-home setting.
There is something magical about sitting around the camp fire as the flames burn to embers. The lack of electronic stimulation gives way to the sounds of nature and the opportunity to discuss things of the heart emerges. Discussions of individual worth, personal values, spirituality, and difficult topics of the day come easily and have more impact in such a non-threatening environment.
Any work involved in going camping is well worth the time and effort!