When you’re backpacking, a campsite location can be the difference between a really good trip and one that goes downhill quickly.
Today we’re looking back on the camping spots we’ve thoroughly enjoyed, the sites we’ve struggled with, and the ones we’ve had mixed opinions on with their various pros and cons.
In our last update (which you can read by clicking here) my better half detailed our first experience in the backpacking world, as well as the very first lakeside retreat we sprinted to with our backpacks locked and loaded.
This was our view from day to night. Not bad, eh? The lake served as an oasis from the scorching rays of the sun in the sky and we had a huge fire pit with plenty of downed trees in the area to choose from for wood. Great, so where’s the beef?
Well, take a look at the tall grass surrounding the lake. Ultimately nothing wrong with this as it is, except for the fact that critters tend to make their homes here. In this case, those critters were akin to spending the night with Dracula, hoping he and a few of his good buddies won’t show up to run an IV from your veins to their throats. Maybe I’m painting ticks in a bad light? Good, I hate them and they deserved to be captured and set on fire that evening. Burn!
Notice anything different about the campsite of our choosing the following night? Not a single blade of grass in sight! You know what they say, if you can’t beat ’em, give up and switch campsites.
Making a mental note to douse everything in permethrin before we ever bed down in tall grass again, we rested much easier knowing that our oppressors would be few and far between, not to mention much easier to identify without being ankle-deep in the green Transylvania from the night prior.
Our next campsite location where we’d rest our weary backpacking bones would come to be our personal favorite, which we still prefer to pitch our tent in whenever possible. We love nesting under the tall pines, with the soft feeling of the needles beneath our feet (oxymoron?) and the inviting sense of peace obtained within these sections of the forest. There’s something surreal which we can’t quite put our fingers on about it, suffice to say it always brings a smile to our faces to come across the pines on the trail.
I believe the only con we’ve observed when camping in a pine forest is the amount of bees. They seem to love it as much as we do, but it has never been a problem for us. We let them bee and they leave us be. Sorry, bad dad joke. Other than that, the pines are prime real estate with their vast open canopies.
It can be hard to tell from the picture, but if you notice that the tent looks a bit… off, it’s because it is. There are times when we set off on backpacking trips where we leave rather late in the afternoon, leaving us with the task of night hiking to a campsite and setting up beneath the stars and our headlamps. This particular night, we couldn’t find a decent location to call home and the place was packed, which found us sitting sideways on a slope and me rolling downhill off of my sleeping pad. Fun stuff.
This, for me and my bad attitude from this past situation at least, is the avoid at all costs campsite. If anyone out there enjoys the thought of making sleep a sporting event, this would be right up your alley. For the rest of you who like to wake up without a busted hip or a disgruntled tent mate, do yourselves a favor and stay flat my friends.
Have a favorite or hated campsite location? Let us know below in the comments!