How it happened at first
I have been dreaming of going camping for at least 8 years now.
When I came to the UK and in particular to Scotland I was a little boy, I was scared and everything there seemed very foreign to me.
One thing that was the most scary during my time there, were the camping trips that we took, as well as the sailing trips that we had.
I have never been the outdoorsy type. I preferred to stay in the comfort of my room and my bed. Why bother if it is already good here? Why go out of our way just to experience something new? You want something new? Well you can just watch a movie or something.
Well that is what I thought before going on one of those trips.
Once I was forced to go onto my first camping trip I was really-really sad. I thought that it was a waste of time and everything scared me. I had also always hated any insects and just the thought of sleeping in the tent was scary to me.
Long story short, we packed our bags and I stuffed as much food as I could, and we set off on our huge school bus into the unknown.
The first was quite frankly, amazing. I have never experienced anything like that before. It was constant stillness. I had my mind off every little problem that I had at the time. I didn’t bother with the exams that were coming up, I didn’t bother with any thoughts about the future. I was fully consumed in the moment.
To be completely honest, I really hated Scotland. The weather was just like Russia but we more humid air. I got sick every month and every time I had to walk outside I wanted to beat the #$%^ out of Scotland.
Well, when I started walking on the hiking trail I took everything back that I ever said about Scotland back. The human made Scotland is awful, but the nature is simply astonishing. I have never seen or experienced anything.
You can probably imagine that I was much more enthusiastic for the next trips and that is true. Each trip just got better and better
Why it has not happened anymore
It has been 7 years now since I left Scotland. That means that it has also been 7 years since my last trip.
I have been telling everyone that I want to go one one again, but why has it not happened? Well there are multiple reasons.
- My surrounding doesn’t go camping.
As you might know, I am Russian and most of my friends are either Russian. Russians just don’t understand camping. As I have always said, you are the 5 people you spend the most of time with. My 10 closest people don’t go camping. That means that I have to really go out of my way if I want to go on the camping trip.
- It has to be a thought out decision.
We are all very busy and we have our lives that we have to keep up with. We need to work and get money as well as relax and enjoy our time off. If you want to go camping, you really need to schedule in advance and get everything ready. That can be tough, especially if you have some daily things that you gotta do on your phone or with laptop that has a connection to the internet.
- The benefits and results of camping are not apparent.
If you tell anyone that hasn’t done camping, how amazing it is, they would just laugh it off. The way you start camping is by being dragged there by friends, colleagues and acquaintances. I don’t think anyone went on the hiking trail first time with no-one forcing them to be there. But once you are there it is like a drug, you can’t stop.
What is worst is that with each passing week you start to forget how amazing it was and how elevated you were during the trip. This means that if you wait too long you will most likely never go on one again.
- Camping is both physically and mentally draining.
Humans don’t like doing difficult things. We choose the most frictionless and most easy things that we can be doing during our working and free time.
If you want to go camping there is a funnel, just like in marketing.
It goes something like this:
Get an idea to go camping —> Choose the trail and find the parking —> Find people to go with you —> double confirm that they are going —> Buy equipment and clothes to camp —> Buy things to pass time and stay warm —> Reconfirm a week before the trip that everyone is going —> Collect your party —> Drive to the start of the trail
You might think that this is pretty basic and easy, but you have no idea how many people just drop at each and every point in this funnel.
We human beings don’t want to be challenged. We want to eat and reproduce and that is it. Going into the mountains and forests doesn’t guarantee us a reproduction and food so why bother?
Your main take out from this should be to be always open for opportunities and if you haven’t ever went camping, well now that we all trying to stay away from other humans, it can be the perfect weekend activity. Try it, you will not regret it.
Even if you are alone, you can always find groups and paths in every country that has countless people hiking every day. Don’t worry about being scared. It is part of the fun.
Start now. Get perfect later.