I got off from work early so i could rush home and pack for the fathers and sons outing. After a frustrating day at work i was looking forward to a little R&R away from it all.
Hmm, what to take? pillow, small tent, sleeping bags, some bug spray (i hear there might be mosquitoes), the telescope, the laptop, and a book just in case. After looking around a few more times, i realize i haven’t packed any food or drinks. Oops. Throw in some drinks, some candy bars, and a can of peanuts for good measure.
“Alex, are you ready? Let’s go!”.
“I hope i can find it,” thinks Scott. I have a general idea of where the campsite is, but the directions were rather vague. Diamond Fork #3 (or maybe it was #5). Away we go! On the way up to the campsite, i notice the huge new windmills at the mouth of the canyon. Turns out they’re the largest in the country. Pretty cool. Too bad they’re not spinning. Rather odd, considering the wind is blowing. *shrug*. Hope they didn’t cost too much.
Just as the car passes the windmills the radio DJ informs us that “bean farts don’t smell. It’s the vegetable farts that really give off the nasty odor.” Who knew? Sounds like it would make a good jeopardy question.
We get to the Diamond fork turnoff and turn off. I turned off. I reminded Alex that a few years ago during the winter this is where we went tubing and saw the mountain lions. “I know dad.” He also informs me that he went on a field trip here last year and planted a tree.
We get to the campsite, turn in and begin to drive around. I spot campsite #3 but it’s definitely not
the campsite we’re looking for. After driving around throw the entire campsite (which is quite large), i decide that we’re lost. “Luann, do you have anyone’s phone#?”
“No Scott. You stole my phone so you could get on the internet tonight. You’ll have to look up the numbers yourself.”. Hmmph, not very helpful
Nobody seems to be answering. Doesn’t anyone else have a signal up here??! Finally I spot someone else from the ward looking lost. I begin to follow them around. After a while we run into a 3rd lost party member, and finally someone decides it might be a good idea to stop and ask for directions.
“Oh sure, the group campsites are further up the canyon. This is the wrong campsite. Keep going up the road a few miles.” Well, that’s easy enough. Off we go. After a few more campgrounds that turn out not to be ours, we finally spot a group of people we do
know who apparently got the memo about where to meet.
Alex immediately jumps off and melds into the throng of kids while i go searching for a spot for the tent. The campsite is in a beautiful little opening. “It’s brand new,”, we’re later informed by the campsite manager (who shows up to make sure we’ve paid our fees no doubt). I spot a nice little area down by the river and setup the tent. I didn’t bother having Alex help – he was having fun. Besides, he knows how to setup a tent and will get lots of practice on his scout camps.
“What did you bring for dinner,” someone asks. “Oops – were we supposed to bring our own food?” Not to worry – plenty of people around to mooch off
Dennis was nice enough to let me have one of his hamburgers. Alex had a hamburger bun. “Can’t we go to the gas station and get something?” Hah… This is camping my boy!
After dinner while everyone is milling about, I head back to the car and hop online to check for geocaches nearby. There are plenty. I pick up that’s about a mile up the road and Alex and I head out to find it. We invited everyone, but no one seemed interested. After about 10 minutes, Adam B. comes riding up on a bike to join us (he didn’t bring a bike, btw… must have ‘borrowed’ it from someone). Alex soon takes over the bike and Adam and I have a nice little walk up the canyon.
We talk about various things, including his writing. Adam is 17 and is the most prolific writer i’ve ever met. He writes 6000 word short stories before breakfast on a regular basis. He is a member of a website that does author peer review (you should check it out. critters.org
He’s also quite an accomplished artist. I’m sure if he goes into a creative writing field he will do amazingly well.
“Oh oh; there’s a bunch of people camping right where the geocache is.” (“And they’re smoking and playing hackey sack,” says Adam). Well, i ask them if they wouldn’t mind if we cut through their camp and have a look at the tree over there. They don’t seem to mind and we quickly locate the cache.
When we get back it’s starting to get dark. Dennis’ son has setup a projector and is using his laptop to play a movie.
“The princess bride”. A classic. Love it. It’s also starting to get breezy and a little chilly. While the movie plays, i setup the telescope. There are no clouds, no trees right near us and we should have a perfect view. Oh … except for the fact that we’ve got almost a full moon that’s so bright it’s casting shadows. Oh well. We spend a few minutes looking at the moon, and then i pack up the scope for another day.
After the movie ends, everyone heads off to bed. Except all the elders who ask me if i can get online and check the Jazz score. It’s game 6 vs. the Lakers. I get online, there’s 2:25seconds left. “The Jazz are down by 11!”. Oh wait, 60 seconds later the page refreshes and now they’re only down by 3! Wow, i’ll bet crowd is roaring. We are all huddled around the laptop in the freezing cold wind watching the screen refresh every 60 seconds. Man that was a long 2:25. Took almost a half hour for the game to finally end. Jazz lost by 3.
I head for the tent. Fortunately Alex is already there asleep. I lie down and decide to read for a while. I brought along my trusty head lamp. Works great as a reading light. The ground is rock hard. Mostly
smooth, but just uncomfortable enough to be annoying all night.
After a long night, i get up, eat breakfast – the traditional eggs, bacon and pancakes that we always have whenever the elders are in charge of food. While everyone is milling around again i take down the tent, pack the car and wait for Alex to get tired of the mountains.
“Dad, can i borrow the walkie talkie? We’re going to hike up to that rock cliff way over there.” Oh boy, looks fun. I’ll just sit here in this chair and listen to the chatter while you hike around. They didn’t quite make it to the cliff. But they did have fun. They got back, we left, picked up something at the gas station on the way home for Alex, and arrived at home, just in time for a day full of honey-dos outside. But that’s another story.