weekend wander

July 29, 2013

the boy had a birthday this weekend. as he's been working non-stop building a house for the past two years, we took some time to celebrate his birthday in style... his style: with woods, hammocks, swimming holes and camping food.

patrick's always loved backpacking, even more so since we scrapped the tents and camp in hammocks instead. this is a tricky concept, as your tent space is basically a sort of big burrito hung between trees. but, it's incredibly comfortable (a definite improvement over the hard ground) and waking up to a view of the trees overhead... love that.

the campsite was strung with old dreamcatchers, which i found particularly charming. my camp chef busied himself with some pretty incredible meals... chicken and dumplings for dinner along with a lemon cheesecake with gingersnap pecan crust for dessert. and of course, we do birthday camping up right, with a camp cup of red wine!

on our way out the next morning, we stopped at the bearclaw... a little drive-up coffee hut in the middle of nowhere. cutest little place that serves up a mean espresso. we capped the whole birthday weekend off with sushi for dinner and then drinks at the divey-est of dives (the kind of place that fixes broken booths with a few milk crates and some old boards).

i love, love, love to see that birthday boy smile.

9 notes:

  1. i love the hammock idea ~ tell me more.
    do they zip shut to keep the bugs out?
    do they just fit one person?
    mine is just a backyard cotton hammock, but it's my favorite place to be.
    i love the idea of no tent or sleeping pad!

    1. there is an entire community of avid hammockers who could talk your ear off about the things... but i can give you a basic run down. most of them have an attached bug net along the top that zips shut. inside you use a top quilt that's basically like a down blanket with the end sewn into a pocket for your feet. if it's very cold outside you put an underquilt along the bottomside of the hammock. if it rains, there's a tarp fly that gives you a little privacy and a place to keep your gear. we use warbonnet hammocks: http://www.warbonnetoutdoors.com

      it sounds a little complicated, but they set up so much faster than a tent and are lighter to carry!
      oh, they are just one person, but there is a two person set up we've never tried.

      hope that helps!

    2. thank you, regina!
      this seems so much simpler & better,
      provided there are trees & no pesky rangers.

  2. Happy happy Birthday!!!

    I've been kicking around the hammock idea for some time...we bought a Big Agnes ULW backpacking tent awhile ago that we haven't put to use (for shame!).

    That said, I had a friend telling us that he went to put his hammock up, only to have a ranger come along later and tell them to take it down. Since they destroy the bark on the trees out here in CA, they allow a destructive beetle inside that will kill the tree. Yaaaay.

    What does Patrick think of his Osprey pack? My day pack has been awesome for nursing school!

    1. i asked patrick about the tree issue... he's far far more into hammocks than i am. the hammock groups have won a few arguments against restrictions like this by using 2" tree straps to disperse the load on the tree and not cause damage. but i expect there may be different regional issues based on local trees/bugs.

      patrick loves his osprey pack. and i love mine. (i returned the REI pack that hurt my back and have been much happier with the osprey.)

      if you have any more hammocking or gear questions, i'd be happy to pass them along to my resident camping nut! xo.

    2. After working for Patagonia, I'm a gear nut. It's crazy. I have an entire plastic tub of camping gear (it doesn't help that I've been kicking around a NOLS semester wilderness medicine course to supplement Nursing).

      Has he heard anything about the ENO hammocks?

    3. kimberly ~
      i did a NOLS semester wilderness course & loved it ~ fall semester in the rockies waaaaaaaaaaaaaay back in 1989 : )
      {i turned 19 on the course}
      such a great organization & i have carried the "leave no trace" message with me ever since ♥

    4. That's the one I've been kicking around! If I don't start a January nursing cohort, that's plan B. Jeez, to think I'll be turning 30 while doing it :)

      What an awesome experience! I wish I had found NOLS way earlier.

  3. Looks like an incredible weekend!