Escape the Campsite and Go Exploring!

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March 28, 2013

If I say the word camping to you what is the first thing that will come to mind?   For some of you, it could be the outdoors, because, like it or not when you are camping you will definitively be in nature – unless you are camping in your backyard, that is, but then you would miss of a lot of opportunities.

But what do you do when you are camping?   Do you only camp or do you get involved in other types of outdoors activities?   According to the 2012 American Camper Report, 16% of the participants said they are only camping.   That leaves us with 84% doing another outdoor activity while camping.   Congratulations to these people because they are expanding their experience of camping.

So it got me thinking about the kind of activities that you can do while camping.   I mean, there are people who don’t know what else to do, so I figured I could suggest some activities for them in order to engage with nature and have more fun while camping.

One of the best activities I enjoy is photography.   I would go walk by myself and explore my surroundings.   The important thing to remember when you go on paths with your camera is to make sure not to make too much noise because you don’t know what special animal you can see while looking to take pictures.   In the past, I came across a turtle laying her eggs in the sand next to a trailer, saw Canadian geese on the lake, came across fabulous flowers and mushrooms, and encountered a colorful bird in the forest.

You could also invest in books or apps to learn more about the trees, flowers, birds and animals living in the area where you camp.  This will expand your knowledge of the wildlife, as well as encourage you to go and explore the world around you.  Some animals we have encountered at the campground are raccoons, squirrels, chipmunks, birds, turtles, fish, and once a skunk even walked under our RV one summer night.

If your campground is equipped with outdoors activities, then you are in luck.  A lake would be a great place to try canoeing, fishing, wakeboarding, and much more.

My kids love to discover new things when we camp.  Last year, we stumbled on a kind of snake and its babies.   They learned that it could slide on the water in order to escape them.   They have caught frogs and go fishing regularly with their dad on the lake (while I take a well deserved time out).  We also do bird watching and try to learn as much on a species we see as possible.   Sometimes we even go geocaching.   This activity can be fun for the whole family as you have to explore the area where a cache is hidden.  You can also take something from the cache and include something else in exchange.   It’s a fun way to develop searching skills for everyone in your family.

The bottom line is that there are a lot of activities that you can do when you are camping.  Don’t stay just to your site and do nothing else.   Nature is waiting for you to discover it.  Grab your camera, go for a walk in the paths and try to identify the trees, plants, birds and animals you will encounter.

This year I would love to go explore a cavern with the family.   It would be different and fun at the same time.   Check out the various outdoors activities you can do around the place where you camp.  I know that near where we are you could also go do some white river rafting.   I would love to try this out with my family one of these days.

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