Camping on a trip

My dad used to take me and my two brothers camping all the time when we were younger. At first, our camping trips were mostly spent observing nature, but as we got older, my dad would teach us survival skills to live in the woods. We joked that he was always convinced that we needed to have these skills in case there was a major global catastrophe that forced us to live in the wild. In reality, I think he just loved seeing us learn how to fend for ourselves. One particular weekend, we went camping in the middle of December. The weather was supposed to be cold, but not so cold that we risked our health just by being in the elements. What my dad forgot to account for, however, was that we were driving several hours north, and the weather would be considerably cooler up there than it was here! We arrived to our campsite a few hours before sundown, so it wasn’t very cold just yet. We were able to build a campfire and set our cooking tools up beside it, which was a great way to add to the heat produced by the fire. Once the sun had been down for an hour, we sat in a circle around the fire, watching as the oldest of us helped my dad with cooking our meal for the evening. We loved seeing how our father could turn fresh fish from a stream into a delightful meal, and the sounds of the surrounding wildlife created a very comfortable environment for us all to enjoy. Best of all, we hardly noticed the cold weather, because my dad had rocks boiling in one of the pots set over the fire. He showed us this ancient trick for warming up in the cold, and how he’d put the whole container in the tent with us to create natural warmth without risking a fire. Plus, my dad wasn’t adamant about not using modern technology – he always brought a small portable heater, just in case it got too cold. I miss those days more than anything, but I’ll be sure to do the same with my own kids someday!

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