To camp or not to camp

No, this is not a post about how to express any particular sexual orientation, its about actual camping.

I went on a test ride/camping trip to make sure everything was working for the big trip.

I had all my gear packed, the bike felt like riding with an elephant on the back, still had no room for some of the camera gear I wanted, but set off with the intention of working it all out. The camp site was not the best but was going to have to do. I would need to get used to sleeping with traffic noise at some point. I setup the tent, table, chair and cooked some dinner on the MSA stove. So far so good. at about 5pm it started getting dark and cold and by 6pm, I was inside the tent reading a book and trying to stay warm. The new -12 degree sleeping bag was fantastic and I was warm (unless I wanted to move). Actually warm was not a good word as it could mean too warm, comfortable is better. The new bag is really great. It has elastic on the lower portion so that you can still move around a little but it stays wonderfully snug.

When the tent was setup, I failed to pull the fly out sufficiently on one site and it touched the inside part of the tent. Oh well, thats what the trip was for, to work these things out. In the morning, the grass everywhere was white with frost. The tent where it was setup incorrectly was wet. That part of the tent touched me and therefore, I too, was wet.

Normally, on this planned trip halfway round Australia, This shouldn’t be a problem. Firstly, where its cold, It won’t be wet (Alice etc). Secondly, where its wet it won’t be cold (Cairns) and Thirdly, where its wet and cold, I won’t be camping anyway (most of Vic)

Packing up a tent in the cold and wet sucks. It requires unpacking and drying later and your hands get very cold.

The upshot of all of this is that I don’t think I will be camping on this trip. This will save me some room in packing, and allow more flexability in the times I spend riding (I can leave earlier and arrive later). It will however involve spending more money on accommodation. I guess this is something I’ll have to just deal with.