In recent times, the term glamping has come into use in the U.S. This is a combination of glamour and camping. No more cooking over a fire (good most summers when there are severe fire restrictions, as right now). No more sleeping with the slugs crawling over you. No more freezing nights when you have to wear everything you brought with you in order to keep warm. No more going without washing for days on end.
I participated in all of this for years, dirty body, dirty clothes, half washed dishes if washed at all. The dog can do a better job of washing the dishes than a paper towel any day and what do I do with the dirty paper towel, I have to carry it out. I have slept on picnic tables to avoid rattlesnakes cuddling up with me for warmth, I have had my sleeping bag soaked and not drying for a week. I have had slugs sucking on my neck. Yuck!
I am now a glamper. I think at seventy-one years old I have earned this right, paid my dues. I also think that my age and my physical condition probably would be best camped a little closer to civilization rather in the hinterland somewhere. I miss those wild, remote, private places, but I can still enjoy the fresh mountain air, the walks in the woods around the campground, and the smell of bacon cooking in the fresh morning air.
Yesterday nine deer walked up to the area where my travel trailer is sitting at Curlew Lake State Park in Eastern Washington State. One of them even followed one of the other campers back to her rig, probably hoping for a handout. Today they have come down from the desert above to eat all the fallen leaves on the grass. The park attendant will not have to rake leaves as they ate every one of them. Cleaned it up beautifully. Perhaps there is a mineral or vitamin they lack in their usual environment. I did notice that they do not eat the lush green grass around the campground, preferring the dry brush and grasses up the hill.
I have been painting crows recently and am looking to get more reference photos for my work. Crows visit all campgrounds and there was a murder of crows consisting of fifteen sitting in the shade of one of the deciduous trees just up the hill. I try to entice them with the “old maids” from last night’s popcorn when I can snap a few photos. They are very camera shy.
This campground seems devoid of chipmunks and squirrels, but the last one in the higher elevations had many gathering last minute foodstuffs for their winter’s sleep. Fat and furry, they were almost ready as some areas have already had their first frosts.
Bears, rattlesnakes, poison sumac, ivy and oak are some of the hazards of camping, even at this easier form. Bears are attracted to the goodies left around by careless campers and can ransack a sight while your back is turned, even in broad daylight. Squirrels and crows can do almost as much damage as the bears.
In this area we have seen black bear and moose, both which you should avoid. Haven’t seen any snakes as the nights are in the low 50’s and they are probably far outside the bustle of the campground.
Fishing is a big past time here, but we haven’t participated in that in recent years. I used to be a worm dangler with a good book and my husband a fly fisherman, but our differing styles don’t make for compatible fishing. Now I just like to watch the turtles sunning themselves on deadheads (floating dead trees in the water) in the lake. Sometimes they come inland and you might scare them when walking through tall grass and mistake them for a rattler.
Glamping means I can cook in my usual style, which is gourmet extravagant. With a three burner gas stove, oven, refer, and double sink, I can cook almost anything I can make at home. I have a shower with hot and cold water. Some glampers even have clothes washers and dryers, but that is a bit much for me. I have a soft bed with real sheets. I also have heat for the cold nights in the mountains.
Glamour camping, glamping, may have its drawbacks, it may seem extravagant, it probably seems silly to the hard core, but at my age I can still enjoy the scene and the wildlife around me without the hazards of needing to be airlifted out if I fall and break something. I can still enjoy the great outdoors and be comfortable.