There really isn’t anything like getting outside away from wifi and just being in nature to reset, get inspired and just truly rest.
After writing the RESET-90 Happy Healthy days program I really wanted to have my own time to just unwind, reflect and recharge. I really think it’s important to do that every once in a while. Resetting may look different for different people at different times but for me, I’ve really had an urge to be outside and away from the hustle. I find that being in nature helps me connect with my creative side and allows me to just flow in a way that feels natural. Good sleep, exercise, creative activities and good food are all part of my perfect reset.
I spent the extra time reading, playing my guitar, painting and paddling. Although there were fires in the area it didn’t seem to bother me. I napped when the bugs started to get busy in the afternoon and just enjoyed the slow pace of the day. Each day was a little different and I had plenty of visitors but some of the days I got to enjoy all to myself which I am very thankful for.
I did do quite a bit of planning before I went on this trip, primarily because I’ve gone on enough mini, overnight camping trips to know that I always seem to forget something so I wanted to be well prepared to stay until I felt fully rested. I was planning it with a few close friends so the first thing we did was make an iPhone notes list that we then shared with each other. It’s the best way I can think to cover all the bases and not buy extra things someone in the group already had. People often spend a lot of money on camping gear but you would be surprised how much you can save by borrowing or buying used on a buy and sell like Facebook Market Place or thrift stores. I do however think there are a few things that you may want to invest in for quality if you plan on doing more than one trip. Don’t worry about buying things that you need though, because if you find you don’t use it again you can always sell it on those buy and sell sites and get most of your money back.
Bring it- Basics that you might want to consider
There are of course a variety of ways to enjoy the outdoors like RVing, Tenting or Vanning. I went tenting this time but may consider a harder shell after the bear scare we had. Tents are great for a lot of reasons as they are easy to store and if you have a small car you can take them anywhere your car will go. With this 9 person tent, we had room for two queen size blow up mattresses and plenty of room for our other belongings. We could stand up in it so it was great all around. I found I spend the afternoons in there when the black flies got bad and for those glorious afternoon naps.
Living off the land has become a hot topic these days and although I am doing my best to learn the ropes, I think it would take some time to really get used to doing that fully and completely. Everything we used to create this adventure was bought so I don’t want to deceive you into thinking that living off the land would be easy or that we really did that here, it was camping with some fishing… that’s all. I mean having no wifi is a real treat and in some ways being disconnected you do feel like you are living with the basics but if I was honest, this was more like glamping than anything. I really had everything I needed. I feel kind of disappointed telling you that because I wish I could say I would survive living off the land but it may take a lot more learning and collecting things for hunting and building shelter than what we had. After dealing with continual bear scares I think I would be looking to build protection first before anything else. None the less, we did use what we had around us but ultimately we did make a few trips to town, about every three days because we needed supplies and ice. We had water for washing near by but we still brought filtered 5g jug of water with a pump. Our bathroom consisted of a dug-out outhouse and I brought baby wipes for my bottom. It sure made a girl feel primal and basic but even that wasn’t that bad.
Finding the perfect location
Depending on what kind of camping you are looking to do you will want to consider a few things.
1. How are you going to lodge? Cabin, tent, RV, Van? Honestly, if you have a family I would stay out of the woods and look for a camp site to start. It will be safer and you will have what you need in terms of bathrooms or out houses. Look up camp B.C or Alberta (or your local area) and there will be plenty of places. You will also know before you go if there is availability.
2. How long do you plan on staying? Many camp sites have limits so you will want to find that out also.
3. How many people are you bringing? If you want to camp like I did, there was really only room for two large tents or a camper and a tent with our vehicles. Make sure you have a spot that is big enough for your group, also campsites usually have limits on people per site. It may take some scouting before you go. I had a local find me this spot and was super spoiled in terms of privacy. They are pretty private about the locations around Revy so unfortunately I can’t share this rare find but for those that want to find adventure and willing to do some looking I’m sure you will find the perfect spot.
Bear watch is a real thing. I felt a lot safer just knowing I had a Bear Spray near by but had I really been face to face with one I doubt I would be so brave, I had an encounter from a distant and was lucky to be able to make it to my car as I rant off my site but was pretty spooked the following nights. I’ll have to tell you about the fish wire parameter rig we made up for bear alerts in the night one day. It was awesome but also spooked us quite a bit so I’m undecided if it was a good idea or not.
Fishing for beginners
I am not a pro fisherman, I do not have enough experience to tell you where to start but I can suggest you stop by Jonny’s Fishing in Revelstoke if you are headed that way, they will gear you up with what you need. https://www.johnnyswildoutdoors.com I had a pro get me set up and help me make my first catch as well as teach me a few tricks. I highly recommend picking up fishing if you haven’t already, it’s so satisfying to eat the fresh catch of the day. We also had a little tin boat for our fishing adventures as well but that’s kind of a pro thing to have so if you already have one you probably don’t need to read this blog because you know more than me.
Food Prep and Storage
I know for me, food is the key to great energy and having that my stomach has never done well with processed foods for the most part I still try and limit these things.
Coolers are key in making sure you can have fresh produce for days but on average I would have to go back to town every 3 days for ice so my suggestion would be to eat the fresh food first and hold off on the non-perishables until later.
Make your own ice blocks to start (because blocks are better than chopped ice, they last longer) but be prepared that you will need more ice for coolers at least every 3-4 days depending on your cooler. You can also consider investing in an electric cooler and have it plugged into your car it will help if you can’t just whip into town for ice every couple days.
The best cooler on the market for keeping things cool for a long time are Yeti coolers but since they became all the rage there are plenty of similar coolers that do the job great for less money. There are lots with great designs too if you care about that sort of thing.
- Large hard cover cooler Pelican Elite 95 Quart Cooler for meat and produce
- Yeti Cooler
- Soft cover cooler Large
I brought 3 hard cover coolers and 3 soft coolers. I made sure to keep my meat separate from my produce and had a spare one for ice and beverages. Dry goods were all kept in our vehicles and the coolers were set far away from the tents. Always make sure to do that in case a bear shows up. They want your food not you, so if you keep it away from where you sleep and hang out you will have time to make moves if one does show up.
Food prep and Dishes
I did bring some plastic plates and utensils but you can really just take what you have in your cupboard. No real reason to be fancy, I just didn’t want to break anything by accident so now I have a full set of camping dishes.
Also, you’ll need to remember dish soap and a pan to wash in, along with a scrubby. Of course some towels and anything else you would use to clean dishes and tables. It’s just like home except you are outside. So think through your daily activities and you will be sure to have all you need.
Coffee was part of my morning routine and being that we couldn’t have a fire I made with a Jet boiler which was super handy. I was able to make noodles and soups as well with this thing. Definitely, something you’d want to invest in.
For the fuel, you’ll need an isobutane tank. I just got a few at Canadian Tire.
We toasted bagels in the morning, grilled chicken wings and baked portobello mushrooms, corn, hamburgers and fish all on this grill. It’s all you need really for most of your cooking needs.
Exercise and Entertainment
I don’t need much to keep myself entertained with hiking, fishing and just relaxing but I did bring some books to enjoy while swinging in my hammock, some paints, my guitar, a paddle board and some exercise equipment such as a mat, bands, and some kettlebells. Also with the sleeping arrangements I’m sure glad I brought my travel roller as I used it every morning to roll out some knots in my back. Depending on the group you are planning on taking with you, I would recommend some cards, board games, frisbee, some water games, some floaters and water noodles just to hang out and enjoy the sun and water.
I had my music running most of the time from my iTunes downloads. I did make a few play lists before I went to make sure I had a variety of mood music for the events taking place. I included music for my morning worship and prayer time, upbeat workout music, country fishing music, night life beats and relaxing calm cozy music for bed time. The best thing I had was this solar phone charger that kept my phone and beats pill going the whole time. It worked great even when there was little light because of the smoke in the sky.
Growing List of Essentials
Here’s a list of some of the things I brought or bought with where you can buy them too. The list isn’t complete but I will keep adding as I go. Make sure you make a list of everything you will need. Also with clothing make sure you bring everything from swim suits to winter jackets. I used everything I brought. Some of the nights got pretty chilly and rain is always a possibility. I’ve gone on trips where it rained the whole time so just keep that in mind.
Our Tent- Coleman 9 man tent
Solar lights throughout the camp site to keep things lit and feeling safe.
The Best camping chair– Kuma
Over sized blue planet Hammock
Towels for bathing and dishes
Extra Kitchen stuff
Fish line and cans for a boarder around the camp to make noise if bear crosses.
Well, so much for roughing it they said. You can always take the girl into the wild but you’ll never take the model out of the girl. I honestly can’t help it, when I see beautiful back drops I just have to capture it. I don’t care if the picture is with me or a model I’m shooting, I just want to capture it. It did turn into a photoshoot a few times and I will not apologize. It’s an absolutely beautiful place to take pictures. I hope to get some more models out here soon and shoot.
Yes, I brought my makeup bag and camera gear. It was a glorious time to get shots.
For you makeup girls out there, washing your face is essential and getting your makeup off before bed is still a priority when camping. I love my Ponds facial wipes. They are perfect for camping and overnight trips.
All in all it was probably the best trip I think I have ever taken. It was simple and just what I needed. Being prepared made it stress-free and super affordable with a combined effort from the group and some borrowed equipment. I could have done without the bear but even that was kind of exciting. I hope you too can find some time to get outside and away from it all at some point and if you are interested in being part of a camp group make sure you join my newsletter and keep watch for upcoming RESET RETREATS.
Feel free to follow me on Instagram- @clairemrae or my photography page @craephoto as I share more pictures throughout this summer adventure. Also, if you are looking to shoot portrait, weddings, or special occasions I will be in and around B.C and Alberta all summer and would love to get any references or business you may have. Thanks a bunch for reading my blog and your consideration. I hope you are having the best summer ever!