There are many reasons people camp and although I’ve never ‘interviewed’ anyone, per se, I’ve listened to enough stories over the years to find there are lots of viable reasons for primitive camping and/or hauling a travel trailer/motor home.
By far, the number one reason for any type of camping is the freedom involved and the sense of peace that comes from that freedom. Whether you’re pulling into a campsite or have everything in a pack on your back as you walk in the woods to that special place, nothing else could possibly give someone that sense of melding with nature, letting that feeling roll not only over you but inside of you. I’ll admit that even in a campground with others around, that same sense of peace is still there, knowing all you have to do is walk out the door and be in a world that’s quite different from the norm.
Years ago, when my kiddo was a young son and I was a single mom, we lived in the beautiful mountains. Camping was our weekend excursions. Every weekend. The truck was always ready with the necessities and all we needed on Friday afternoon was to pack a bathing suit, some food and be on our way to wherever we decided to go. It always involved hiking on the hilly terrain and hours in the lakes. We’d spend a lot of time walking around the campgrounds, talking to different folks, enjoying their stories, meeting the campground host or hostess or both, watching the local wildlife making their way around and watched our step for snakes. Yea, there’s a story or two or ten about snakes. Regardless, we looked forward each year to our first weekend back in the woods after winter. So many different people and it was all so interesting.
Years later, I advanced to a camper, an Airstream to be specific. She was set up on a lot and my learning experience on how to live small. After a couple of years of that, I invested in Gypsy ~ The Cherokee and decided she would take me around to unknown places far and wide.
Well, she has and it’s been a blast. I’ve seen things I’ve only dreamed of or seen pictures of or watched documentaries of. Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought I could change landscapes from one day to the next and see all of this with my own eyes.
A lot of people camp together, in groups. Four or five campers in a group and everyone knows everyone else. That is so cool. My guess is they’re either in a camping club or everybody just enjoys the great outdoors and sharing it with each other. I sit on the sidelines and watch, smiling at their antics and all the fun they have with each other. I find it much more interesting to be on the outside looking in than inside contributing limited information. I find I learn a lot more this way.
Facebook can be a wonderful tool when finding people with the same interests as yours. There are several ‘friends’ that are campers and I follow a lot of the long-distance hikers of the PCT, CDT and AT. I ‘met’ a friend via Facebook who lives in a more southern state that camps with his wife. We’ve been friends a year or two. Not too many weeks ago, I had the wonderful chance to meet this gentleman and his lady one evening, along with some other friends. We had a blast! My very first camping friends! They had traveled up to the Eastern Shore and were staying locally a few miles down the road at another campground.
I’ve been invited to visit when I’m way down south in their neck of the woods. It will be nice to visit with them again and enjoy their company. It’s nice to pick the brain of a fellow camper but it’s even nicer to find out more about these special people.
Camping brings freedom and peace; and it’s nice to be around people who enjoy that same thing and also understands the need that drives it.