April 21st, 2010

hiker

His chariots of wrath the deep thunderclouds form and dark is his path on the wings of the storm

Our Venturers decided on short notice that they wanted to go to the District Camporee, too, so we're all going camping this weekend at Spring Mill. Rain -- yea, thunderstorms -- are in the offing. I have just sent them all an e-mail to remind them that this is a test of their Venturing spirit. When it rains, we become ducks. No retreating to your tents; shelter is what the dining fly is for. We live and party outside.

When backpacking across Philmont, one frequently encounters rain -- or worse. Sometimes you stop and put up a fly. Sometimes you just throw on your raingear and pack covers and slog on. If you're going to be stopped by a little rain, then you'll never become native to the wilderness. I tell people that the object of our form of camping, and of our way of backpacking, is to reach out and touch the edge of the raw. You can't do that cowering in a tent.

And, of course, the adults are the hardest to teach. We may have a new Dad along this weekend, who probably thinks he knows how to go camping. Pray for me.