Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Living through carpe diem

Carpe Diem loosely translates to "seize the day" though some may argue that a more accurate translation would be "enjoy the day".  We actually like the later as we equate the outdoors with creating a memorable outdoor experience.  For many, camping is a trip that takes planning and preparation (or at least forewarning).  However when a gathering of friends one evening arrives at the idea of a group family camping trip for the upcoming weekend two days away, we say Carpe Diem!

In every one of us (some more than others), a "planner" personality exists.  For the obsessive, write everything down to the last detail personality, the idea of a spontaneous four day camping trip can lead to heart palpitations and night sweats.   In their minds, a camping trip can boarder on the biopic feat that require months of planning and carefully crafted notes.  Yet although unnerving as this may sound to that personality, others embrace the idea of trekking into the outdoors with minimal planning, leaving their experience to chance (and the unexpected rainshower creating a wet, soggy and cold trekker devoid of adequate rain gear and weather forecast knowledge). 

However, we advocate the perfect plan lies somewhere in-between.  A plan that allows for the spontaneous group decision, while also allowing for worst case planning, fitting of the more obsessive individual.

Through the next few blog post, the grasshaven team will help bridge the gap, allowing the compulsive planner a level of spontaneity while giving more detail to the ready for anything adventurer.   This is the series, Carpe Diem Camping.

So when it's T minus two days and counting until departure, what do you do?

Secure your camping location and understand fundamentals.  
Is there water? Are there personal facilities? Is there an open fire ban?  What activities are near or at the campground?  Whose coming and when will they arrive?  Are there any gaps in camping equipment (click here for a detailed Grasshaven checklist to assist your planning)?  Details like these will offer a framework for pulling off a successful camping experience last minute.  Think through the most outer parameters of your trip.  Gear packing and your ultimate success will hang in the balance. 

Do an assessment of the group's camping equipment
Think through each families' equipment contributions.  Work to eliminate duplications while being mindful of equipment gaps.  An equitable balance of equipment between families will prevent undue equipment over or under load. 

Having an understanding of the facilities where you camp will inform the camping gear you will ultimately bring to make your tip a success.  And of course have a quick checklist ready. 

Tomorrow we will discuss meal planning and preparation for the trip.  Thursday we will leave on our spontaneous camping trip and on Friday, Saturday and Sunday we will chronicle experiences.  We are motivated to help get families and friends to embrace spontaneity and enjoy family camping together.  Although at Grasshaven, we always strive to share a perspective of comfort, style, function and at least a little glamping when we get the chance. 

In other words, enjoy the day... embrace carpe diem. And, do it spontaneously with style!