Trip Report Back for a quick trip... but not solo this time!

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tracker1972

Forager
Jun 21, 2008
247
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49
Matlock
No, not solo! I brought my eldest daughter. She is 8 now and has been asking for ages to come out. I've been waiting for better weather, warmer nights, her to be in the right mood (she has an ASD diagnosis, Autistic Spectrum Disorder) blah blah blah...
Well finally we'd both had enough I we just went for it. At the end of a normal Saturday with gymnastics, trampolining, homework and all the rest we just grabbed some sausages and bacon (she can plan the menu again) threw my hammock kit and ground sleeping kit in, plus her sleeping bag and set off to our usual day spot and my occasional overnight spot.

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So we spent the walk mainly in darkness through the woods, headtorch territory for getting the tarp up with her only a little nervous about be being out of sight on one side and the half erected shelter, with her on the other side holding the hank of cord I was pulling out. Soon enough though it was up, the fire was coming to life and not a moment to soon, it was dropping cold and quickly.

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Teatime is normally about 6, so come 8 I was purging to get some sausages in a pan but a hot drink came first for hand warming and thirst quenching. The sausage butty tasted as it only can outdoors by a fire on a chilly (about 3 celcius at this point) evening. The production of a small bottle of ketchup and another of mustard only helped!

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That's when I noticed the stars. It was a beautiful, clear night as the rapidly dropping temperature probably already told you and again, the stars were crisp and numerous as only the (relative) wild can show. We only stood in a silence only broken by the occasional crack from the fire for a few moments but they were beautiful moments. Warmed on our backs by the small fire, orange light flickering on the tree trunks and our cold faces turned towards the sky it's a moment that'll linger in my mind for a while.

Then the fun bit began... Getting an 8 year old with more than the odd sensory issue to wee in the woods, then climb into the hammock, out of the snuggly warm coat and lined wellies! Fortunately she doesn't really feel the cold at first so before long the little pink gnome was ensconced in her sleeping bag (rated to +10C) under my DD top quilt and nestled in the underquilt, which afforded her full coverage as opposed to the marginal coverage an adult gets. Snug as the proverbial bug in a rug. I shuffled my self inflating mat towards the edge of the tarp to maximise my view of the sky and settled for a pretty good nights kip with hardly any waking from either of us and fortunately, no midnight toilet trip for the little one! If I'd thought the stars were good looking though, the moon, rapidly followed by sunrise was simply magical. If you ever wanted a sunrise to impress someone, this was it!

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Lighting a fire early to get ready to receive a miniature camper just added to the atmosphere. A fairly standard morning of drinks, bacon butties, breaking camp and watching our smoke lazily drift off in the longest calmest smoke trail I think I've ever seen was as expected. The 0C overnight temperature being quite easily survived (she took her hat of not long after going to bed as she was too hot) was a bonus and I'm sure it will be repeated, more than once.

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I did take the camera along and did film a couple of bits but this is a memory I don't think I'll need much prompting to conjure up again. Kids eh, I wonder if they'll ever stop making us smile (I'm wearing rose tinted glasses right now, so ignore everything else they do!) Vid below if you are interested.


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Last edited:

Sundowner

Full Member
Jan 21, 2013
882
339
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Northumberland
Outstanding write up, great video! Until your daughter is 15 or 16 it still counts as a solo trip in my book. After all, you carry all the stuff and responsibility!! You'll know you've got their full attention when they are on about coming out with you every time you look at your rucksack!!
 

Woody girl

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Mar 31, 2018
3,251
2,320
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Exmoor
This brings back memories of nights under a large oak Tree with my 8 yr old daughter (now in her 40s with two of her own). No tarp just the stars for a roof. Special moments indeed. A lifetime treasure. My daughter still often speaks of it when we start reminiscing her younger days. Oh this made me feel all warm and fuzzy. moments of joy like this are priceless.
 

saxonaxe

Nomad
Sep 29, 2018
276
391
Pembrokeshire
" Well finally we'd both had enough I we just went for it. "... I smiled when I read that, reminded me that Oscar Wilde once said, when he probably felt the same... " I adore simple pleasures they are the refuge of the complex" :D
Terrific photographs and report, thanks for posting..:thumbsup:
 

Broch

Full Member
Jan 18, 2009
5,363
4,719
Mid Wales
Thanks for sharing. I relish every moment I share a campfire with my grandchildren :) They can appear insanely grownup in that environment.
 

tracker1972

Forager
Jun 21, 2008
247
58
49
Matlock
Outstanding write up, great video! Until your daughter is 15 or 16 it still counts as a solo trip in my book. After all, you carry all the stuff and responsibility!! You'll know you've got their full attention when they are on about coming out with you every time you look at your rucksack!!
Thank you :) The walk back included the discussion about exactly how big a rucksack she could have, and what could go in it. I also mentioned that I might go out this weekend, that was simply met with "where shall we go this time?" Presumptuous little thing!

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tracker1972

Forager
Jun 21, 2008
247
58
49
Matlock
This brings back memories of nights under a large oak Tree with my 8 yr old daughter (now in her 40s with two of her own). No tarp just the stars for a roof. Special moments indeed. A lifetime treasure. My daughter still often speaks of it when we start reminiscing her younger days. Oh this made me feel all warm and fuzzy. moments of joy like this are priceless.
It felt like something of a moment... Glad it's sparked off a happy memory for you :)

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tracker1972

Forager
Jun 21, 2008
247
58
49
Matlock
" Well finally we'd both had enough I we just went for it. "... I smiled when I read that, reminded me that Oscar Wilde once said, when he probably felt the same... " I adore simple pleasures they are the refuge of the complex" :D
Terrific photographs and report, thanks for posting..
Thank you. There really isn't much like a simple trip out to clear the mind is there? I'm just glad that the first was out of the way to prove how simple a thing it really is!

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tracker1972

Forager
Jun 21, 2008
247
58
49
Matlock
Thanks for sharing. I relish every moment I share a campfire with my grandchildren :) They can appear insanely grownup in that environment.
I know what you mean! My kids and the other lovely but basically mental kids we take it on day camps are always so much more responsible and responsive when there is some actual peril involved like some knife work or a real fire. Just shows how capable they can be when needed. Always reassuring and occasionally amusing. Like the way my 6 year old got around not having a belt last time we were in the woods, but she wanted to skin a few sticks...
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tracker1972

Forager
Jun 21, 2008
247
58
49
Matlock
Great work mate, it's important to get the kids outside as much as poss
I know what you mean. Had another trip out this week, pre-halloween picnic night. Loved it, and hardly anyone fell out of a tree climbing it in the dark for hide and seek!
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