Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The great outdoors

I've become obsessed with survival shows on The Discovery Channel. I used to watch Survivorman, but it seems to be in a state of limbo (as, I think I read on his blog, the cameraman/star/host/creator films more segments). Now I'm all about Man vs. Wild.

It's not that I'm obsessed with the show. Rather, I'm obsessed with the premise of both shows. I cannot fathom that these guys get to go out and do this stuff for a living. I know, I know, it's dangerous crap. Bear Grylls is an ex-Commando (the SAS, the original commandos). He climbs down waterfalls. But still, it'd be cool.

Anyway, I'm planning on going camping the last(ish. no calendar handy and I'm lazy) weekend in July. So I'm getting all my gear out. Tracking down my Swiss Army knife (Victorinox, thank you. Not that faker Wenger), trying to find my survival knife. Getting lists of what I need to bring from the lake (tent, saw, stove).

I must say I'm excited. The last time I was camping Caitlin and I were in Montreal. And that wasn't like relax-in-the-woods camping, that was camping and seeing Montreal. Which was awesome. But there's something to be said for waking up, hiking around the woods, gathering firewood, cooking hot dogs for crackerbarrel. Tying your food in a tree. Lashing stick together to make a washstand.

I miss it. When I was in Boy Scouts, those first two years, we camped every weekend in Oct and November, and then again in spring. It was awesome. I've since outgrown my sleeping bag from then. And my hiking boots. I don't need a bag or boots for this trip, as I suspect it's going to be a lot about alcohol and not a lot about nature. But it's all good. I'm looking forward to it either way. Sharpening my knife, going over my first-aid kit. Testing to see if I can stick a Nalgene on a campfire to boil water (that should be interesting -- I've always wanted to know. And Nalgene promotes their Lexan can "boil and freeze liquids," so here goes nothing).

I wish I had their jobs though, the adventure outdoorsmen. Or just that I went on more camping trips.

There are only so many years all these knots can stay in my head before they get bumped out by some Jeopardy trivia! I think I've already forgotten quite a few.

Also, Bear Grylls is a North Face fan, so I'm obligated to watch the show just for that. Too bad Discovery is stupid with iTunes (they put like five shows on, none that anyone watches). These shows would be great references for camping and hiking outings in the future.

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