Wednesday, April 11, 2012

*Nature Girl...not so much...*

It's Book Club time for From Left to Write! Come read our posts!

Trish Herr's then five year old daughter Alex wanted to hike all 48 of New Hampshire's 4,000+ foot mountains. Would you let your five year old do the same? Join From Left to Write on April 12 as we discuss Up: A Mother and Daughter’s Peakbagging Adventure. As a member of From Left to Write, I received a copy of the book. All opinions are my own.
I really enjoyed this book! I am kind of inspired to take my own kids on a long(ish) hike...anyone have any suggestions for Northern California???
I so wish I was more of a nature girl! I love the idea of adventure, of being able to name all kinds of flowers and leaves, and being able to recognize a bird by its call..but the truth is, I'm not. The idea of the day hikes that Trish took her young daughters on-more gentle slopes, not much mountain climbing-appeals to me. I can picture my own energetic kids doing this and loving it! They seemed to have endless energy bounding around the hills around the Golden Gate last weekend, searching for great views and learning about military history.
However, honestly, the thought of a big backpack of supplies, setting up camp on a trail somewhere, does not interest me at all! I took a semi-nightmarish backpacking trip my senior year of college. My roommates and I agreed to go along with some more athletic friends on a trip through the Santa Barbara mountains. Supposedly they had connected with park rangers about an "easier" trail for us newbies. Apparently, there was a mix up because several hours in, we found ourselves hiking on the side of a mountain-I don't even think it was a real trail. I just remember thinking that one false step, and I would be sent careening down the steep sides.
Later that evening, we couldn't find an agreeable camp site before nightfall, so we set up camp by flashlight, all the while pumping our water supply so we wouldn't get giardia...
The weekend progressed...I'll spare you the details, but it involved the pump breaking, bathroom trips in the woods (a Port a Pottie would have been wonderful right about then!) and walking next to a rattlesnake that miraculously didn't strike. My friend Charlotte and I were asking cluelessly, "Does anyone hear a rattle? What is that?", as the rest of the group froze, panic on their faces.
I remember making it home, throwing down my "Beverly Hillbillies" backpack-my school backpack and sleeping bag rolled onto my back with rope (classy, right?), calling my mom immediately and telling her, "If I ever tell you that I am going backpacking again, please forbid me!"
Since then, I have stuck with car camping-parking and setting up camp right next to the car. My husband and I have camped with the the backyard...but I would really like to venture out to camp this summer! Maybe I'm not a nature girl, but I do owe it to my children to expose them to nature! Maybe they'll like the idea of backpacking someday...with someone other than mom!


Thien-Kim aka Kim said...

What an awful time you had! But I'm with you, I want to expose my kids to more nature, hikes, trails.

Some Suburban Mom said...

I'm with you on the car-camping and the backyard camping! My husband loves to take the boys out on their cub scout campouts; I wish I enjoyed it as much as he does. I like being outdoors and I really enjoy hiking, but I'm more of a day tripper.