Hazards of Extreme Camping

Hazards of Extreme Camping
By J. D. Adams
Seeking direction as a youth, I bought a compass and wandered into the savage heart of the wilderness. Oregon's history came alive as I retraced pioneer trails and skied cross-country to skyline camps. Now, grizzled and trout revering, I offer this to show that extreme camping is so much more than surviving the crux of desolation in wet shoes.
Many campers have succumbed to their own camping equipment. Mummy bags were named for their tendency to shift around on the victim during the night, so you wake up facing an ominously shroud-like interior. Only by struggling absurdly with the sleeping bag can one return to the world of the living. Often during the struggle, everything in the tent containing Velcro will attach itself around the victim, creating a monstrous appearance. The flailing around will eventually roll the tent over, impaling the occupants on camping sundries and covering them with loose oatmeal. The modified mummy bag with a fuller cut is more comfortable and less likely to incite claustrophobic reactions.
Tents can function as rain collection devices, drawing moisture into the seams and through the fabric by a process still a mystery to camping scientists. Condensation and leakage collaborate to float the occupant on an inland sea, or upon rising, the victim is met by gallons of super-cooled water holding in the tent fly such that rebirth and amphibious regression are not unlikely. The stakes are high in the tent game, where experience with a good basic design like the freestanding dome tent will ensure dry and comfortable slumber. Before setting up your tent, inspect the lay of the ground for where water may pool up, and look overhead for precarious snags and branches.
The priming of gas stoves typically produces a fireball that is great for trimming those bushy eyebrows, also giving a hard outdoorsy look to the face. Working the stove is always great fun, a bit like being an astronaut and firing the afterburners. Some people get into character, shouting terms like