Happy campers

April 17, 2014

by Tanya

As the Easter long weekend approaches our beautiful beachside town fills up with happy campers. I reckon that this is by far the best time of year for camping. The summer heat has passed, the wind drops, the days are glorious, the nights are clear, calm and not too chilly. 

As the Easter long weekend approaches our beautiful beachside town fills up with happy campers. I reckon that this is by far the best time of year for camping. The summer heat has passed, the wind drops, the days are glorious, the nights are clear, calm and not too chilly. 

We are blessed with some of the whitest beaches, bluest waters and incredibly diverse flora and fauna.There are a couple of simple rules of thumb we follow when we're camping to make sure our pristine environment remains this way for generations to come. It's also not a bad idea to follow these for your own happy camping too.

A)Leave your camp in a better state than you found it. Yep that's right, why just take your own rubbish with you? Imagine if everyone who camped spent just 10 minutes each trip collecting a little bit of rubbish. Better still, take as little rubbish as possible with you. We've swapped a lot of our old camp clobber for sturdy reusable containers and avoid plastic wrap and disposable junk altogether. 

B)Check in with the ranger. These dudes and dudettes are super valuable founts of useful info. They can tell you what weather is expected, tide times, fire restrictions in place and the state of the tracks - boggy, open, closed or clear. If you're really charming they might even let you in on where the fish are biting and, if you do get stuck, they know you exist and can help.

C)Bring everything you need with you. Let's face it, Les Hiddens wannabes aside, not many of us really have the skills to 'live off the land'. Realistically you need to take enough water, at least a couple of litres per person per day and that's just for drinking. If you think you'll need more for washing then either bring it or be prepared to be filthy. Bring enough food, hatssunscreennon digital entertainment and a shovel, if you don't need to dig yourself out of a bog, you may need to (ahem) dig yourself a latrine. If however, facilities are provided at the site... use them!

D)Stick to the tracks and respect road closures. The roads are often closed to allow for revegetation or to avoid the spread of weeds and other nasties like dieback. Bush bashing is just plain not on! Pay heed to the local fire restrictions and warnings, if you must have a camp fire and are permitted to do so, bring your own wood from a responsible source, use fireplaces and keep the fire small and attended at all times.   

E)Enjoy nature! Respect the wildlife. Walk, observe, gaze in awe at everything around you and relish the wide open space, tall trees, big skies and freedom! 

Quesadillas are our traditional camp food. They're easy to make, you can do most (if not all) of the prep before you leave home, they store flat and you can throw pretty much anything in them and they'll still taste good (they're excellent for smuggling vegies into the camp diet too).

1. Lay your tortillas flat and smear one half with something wet - like mayo or salsa or guacamole or hummus.

2. Sprinkle finely chopped grilled chicken, fish, beef or lamb over the wet bit, then chopped vegetables (we use red onion, spinach, mushroom, tomato, sweetcorn, coriander, parsley, grated carrot but your family might prefer a different combo).

3. Top the lot with cheese and fold.You can stack and wrap in recycled foil or parchment paper to take with you or cook immediately. You can cook them in a sandwich press, an oven, a fry pan or on a BBQ. Just cook both sides until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are golden brown.

My littlest bloke is less a baby and more of a little man now so camping is fun again. Yay! So dust off the camper and break out the quesadillas - lets get our camp on...

Camp photo courtesy of Dan Paris Photography



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