Monday, August 08, 2005

The Healing Waters of Hopeville Pond

Camping this weekend, as it always is, was awesome. In my book, there are two kinds of camping. The first kind is the isolated, carry everything on your back, If you take it in, take it out, extreme camping. I have done this kind only twice in my life, both times at the Sequia National Forest in CA.

The second kind is the kind my friends and I try to do every year. It's more like family camping. There are campsites, they are numbered and right next to other campsites. You park right on your site, there are showers and bathrooms, and a store is only a few minutes away. I first started going to Hopeville pond with my buddies Greg and Prior, when we were in middle school. As we got older, we decided to keep the tradition alive. We fell off the horse for a few years, but we stuck with it this year.

The Amazonas portable hammock, you can buy at for $20, is being enjoyed here by Lindsay. In fact, this hammock was a huge success for this year. It has the amazing ability to slip the user into a long and deep coma. You really have to be careful, as I fell asleep for 4 hours on Saturday and missed out on lunch and throwing a tennis ball in the water.

Camping at Hopeville is great. A typical days Itinerary looks like this:

- wake around 9am
- start fire, eat Breakfast
- Convene in the "party tent"
- Swim and fun
- Lunch
- Nap
- Swim
- "Party tent"
- Dinner
- Nightime stroll
- Smores
- Douse fire and sleep around 1 am

But the beauty of the Itinerary is it's interchangeable, you can always swap around an activity for another one, swim when you feel like it, read a book, take another nap. We pride ourselves in the eating part though, that's a big deal. We plan out the menu ahead of time for each meal. This year, we had several tricks up our camping sleeves and a few surprises.

The first surprise was this. These are Venison steaks that we scored from Bernadette's step-dad, Kirt. We swung by their house to grab some firewood, and paid a visit to their locked cooler full of Venison goodies, steaks and sausage mostly. It was really choice meat and was enjoyed by all.

A new activity enjoyed was the Handstand contest. Witness the majesty of Bernadette's form as she blows away Jeremy. We also adapted this contest to a Handstand fight the next day, where two or more people Handstand at the same time and try to knock eachother down with their feet. Last legs standing wins. We also made up a frisbee game where two pairs of people throw frisbee's across from eachother and try to knock the other pairs frisbee out of the air.

For dinner one night we did Pizza. yes, that's right, Pizza over the open flame....ohhhhhh so good! This one is half mushroom and half venison sausage and peppers.

Following the Pizza, Lindsay wowed us with this camping goodie, hollow out an Orange, fill it with Gingerbread, wrap in Aluminum foil and place in hot fire embers for 30 mins, unwrap and enjoy! Only problem with this one was we were stupid enough to mistake Grapefruits for Oranges, so it was a bit more bitter than we wanted, and some of them rose too much and kind of exploded. I'm sure we will refine our technique next time.

I need to repost to squeeze in more pics.

No comments: