I’m not an outdoorsy type of person. Yes, I love hiking, running, sunning myself, going for walks – but there are also a lot of things that I don’t like about the outdoors, like bugs, wildlife, dirt and nowhere to plug my phone. So when B and I hit the road Friday for a weekend of camping at Tygart Lake State Park with two other couples (Steve & Emily; Dave & Anson), I wasn’t sure how I would do. We were sleeping in a tent, on a campsite with no lights or even electricity – and no bathrooms! How would I check Twitter and Facebook if I couldn’t charge my phone? How could I use Instagram if we had no reception?
So Friday night, I turned off my phone and unplugged – literally – for the weekend. And of course, it was amazing. The weather was perfect – cool, crisp and clear – and the campsite was great – not too crowded, had great hiking trails and a beautiful lake within walking distance.
So what did we do to keep ourselves occupied without our phones? Friday night we got in late, B put up our tent (in the dark!) and we got to Steve & Emily’s campsite just as dinner was ready. They had made dinner (yes, cooked over the campfire!) and we spent the night eating, drinking and catching up by the campfire. I slept like a baby in our tent and sleeping bag – but it wasn’t a completely uneventful evening, as two raccoons invaded Steve & Emily’s campsite, fought over a closed box of Halloween Oreos, and then destroyed it. Whoops! Good thing I had brought some peanut butter chocolate chip Oreo bars (recipe posted soon) to share … plus we still had our s’more supplies.
Saturday morning we all cooked breakfast over the campfire – eggs, bacon and pancakes – and then set out to explore the campground by hiking the various trails. We probably hiked about three trails and spent almost two hours checking out the area on foot. After hiking, it was B and my turn to make our meal – we had brought chicken sausages from the West Side Market and peppers & onions. Most of us passed out after lunch, and then spent the rest of the afternoon and evening doing some more walking/exploring, playing games, drinking and then cooking dinner (hot dogs!) and roasting marshmallows.
Sunday, after another campfire prepared meal of pancakes, bacon and breakfast sausage (notice a pattern in our meals?), we hit the road. I survived my first real tent camping experience – including two days without my cell phone, one day without showering (this is a big deal for me), and four campfire cooked meals (I’m really impressed with everyone’s campfire cooking skills).We all had a fabulous weekend and I hope we make it an annual thing! A weekend where I can’t religiously check emails and I can wear yoga pants the whole time? Count me in.