Sunday, June 16, 2013

Salamander Flats

One of the best parts of being a nurse is the totally awesome schedule. Josh works Monday, Wednesday & every other weekend (Saturday/Sunday).

The worst part of my job (and maybe the ONLY negative) is that I work every day. Monday - Friday. It's only in the afternoon, but it sortof steals the awesomeness that comes with Josh's job.

But he refuses to let the awesomeness go to waste. Yay Josh.

We were planning to head up the canyon on Thursday night right after work, but we sortof forgot about the preparation part of going so by the time we were ready to go Thursday, we were slammed with that crazy wind storm and decided we may as well get a good night's sleep before heading up first thing Friday morning.

We drove up the canyon thinking it would be easy to find a spot (ba ha ha ha! - that was dumb.) so after driving up and down and in and out of anything that looked like a camp site we finally landed at Salamander Flats and rushed to set up camp so I could get back to work.

I left Josh with a set-up tent, 2 hungry boys (John starting to run a fever and hacking up a lung), and boxes full of gear.

I had stashed my wardrobe change in my car so that I could change before heading up the canyon, but I was in such a hurry to get up there, I mostly changed at red lights (and one pull over) on my way.


I believe in camp hair, so the do-rag is always the first part of getting ready. Dumb I know - but I don't do hair hair while camping.

I never really know what happens while I'm gone, but when I came back they had eaten all of the snack-food, almost none of the meal-food and they were all happy, hungry & filthy. So I call it success.

We made toastite pizzas for dinner (easy because I knew Josh wouldn't want to try making something time consuming while keeping the boys out of the fire).

Toasttites on the fire.

Pizza ingredients.

After dinner we headed out for a short hike. And by short I mean a couple miles. And by hike I mean walk down the curving canyon road. Because that was the only way I knew how to get to the water. We took a trail on the way back, which was much more enjoyable.

Josh had taken the boys on 3 short walks (but we were in the mountains, so hikes right? Full credit there.) earlier in the day, but they had failed to find a water source and we all knew we'd die if we didn't find a river or stream or SOMEthing in which to throw rocks, pinecones and people.

John rode on my shoulders, Tommy and Josh walked ahead of me and we found the water.

Of course we were enormously thrilled with ourselves. Though the young couple having an intimate moment across the stream were probably embarrassed to find our young family invading their space.

During our walk back we found a trail that was beautifully shaded and had extraordinary views of the mountains all around us.

John says  "booya!" 
 When we got back to camp the boys were happy to sit and watch the fire while we waited for the sun to go down so we could get out the glow-sticks grandma gave them for Easter.

It was glow-stick mania in our tent. And everyone was happy - for almost 10 minutes.

Now, you know I love camping. really. Honestly. And there's nothing like waking up with the cool crisp air and the sounds of nature all around. But the reason that sunrise at 6am is such a beautiful thing is that the night is so so long.

There are a lot of skills that you learn when you camp a lot. How to cook over a fire, ignore the filth, pee in the wilderness....the list goes on. I have learned most of these skills, but the one I've never quite mastered is sleeping.

I used to get cold, so I got a mummy bag.
Then I got claustrophobic, so I got a two-man bag to share with the human space heater I married.
Then we had kids, and cold and cramped were the least of my sleep problems.

Now that Tommy is old enough to sleep in his own bag (all night long without moving at all !!!!) John has taken over the feet-in-face, tossing-and-turning, whinging-and-crying, whimpering-and-coughing position in our family.

And that is why sunrise when you're camping is so so beautiful.

I also love waking up with my boys. They are beautiful in the morning, but I am rarely in a position to capture that beauty. While we're all on the floor snuggling (and rolling around looking for marshmallows to eat) I am glad I get to soak in their goodness.

After breakfast we packed up and headed home so we'd have time to clean up, water the yard, and do all of the regular Saturday stuff.

Camping is one of those things that always makes our little family love each other more. Here's hoping there's lots of it this summer.


  1. Dude!! What did you cook those pizza things on?? They look cool!!

    1. Toastites my dear. You NEEEEED them. It's basically a sandwich maker for camping. :D


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