Afternoon reader(s). What a day! Look outside! Doesn’t it make you want to go CAMPING??? … Maybe? … please … for Earth Day?
Okay. For those of you that thought “yes!! what an idea! Wait. I have no tent, no idea where to go, god, SO tired, do I really want to spend time organizing this?? I mean I could just go sit in an outdoor patio with a beer then read in a park, a park is nature-y right? RIGHT???” then I sympathize. Because although I love hiking, camping just stresses me out. Like the planning and the renting and the driving and the possibility (especially around the District) that although I imagine this:
I could easily end up with this:
Ugh. See “camping” in VA literature often means “RV,” which ends up being a white trash mess. So, with this in mind, I am GIVING you a weekend backpacking trip that is great that I did. It’s called the Three Ridges hike and it’s amazing. You hike into the campsite (like 6 miles), spend the night, then hike back on a different path. AND it intersects the Appalachian Trail, so you can cross that off your list even though you did like 1/156th of it. Some pics:
Beautiful no? Now it is not easy. The beginning is a lot of uphill (lame), but then you get the view, and the second day has a lot of waterfalls and natural swimming holes, FREEZING swimming holes, but beautiful nonetheless. Downsides: First, critters. Yes, this includes BEARS. But the black bear is like the lamest bear ever and is scared of people. All it will do is eat your food, so just hang it from a tree (or ‘bear bag’ it). OH. Raccoons can open cliff bars though, this I learned:
$3.00 breakfast snack gone to some stupid raccoon that probably didn’t even care what flavor it was. Typical.
Secondly, Appalachian Trail hikers. WAY more dangerous. Wandering for days and days alone, see you, just want to “chat,” but that chat just never ends and makes no sense. AVOID. Don’t make eye contact, continue onward and think about the crap food you can eat at the end of the hike because you earned it and it tastes amazing. Like Burger King. God. Perfect weekend. DO IT.
(Ok so the first installment of this series was a Old Rag Mountain, a day hike of 6 hours, the second was this one on camping, and the third will be half-day (or less) hikes for all of you that don’t understand why anyone would voluntarily give up all amenities to sleep in the woods. Lost causes, but at least this way you can pseudo-enjoy nature)