Camping Disasters Happen to Everyone

We have a saying in our family–if nothing goes wrong, you didn’t try hard enough. I can prep all I want for my camping trips but something will always get the better of me. It’s just part of being outside in the elements and taking a chance. As a result, I’ve experienced some camping doozies and wanted to relay a few so that you don’t feel so bad about that time you pitched your tent too close to the stream and when it rained, half your stuff washed away.

One time, I didn’t realize that a bag of hotdog rolls had fallen out of the bag and wasjust sitting in the hatchback of my car (or should I clarify that it was the car I had at the time, you’ll find out why I am making the distinction in a minute). It wouldn’t have been so bad if I had also remembered to roll the window back up after I went through the gate at the campgrounds but it was late and Murphy was on my side that night. Luckily I was not in bear country. Unlucky for my car, however, I was in squirrel country. It was my own stupid fault, but still. There is no amount of car detailing that is going to get the smell of squirrel piss out of car upholstery, let me tell you.

I always keep an eye on the weather reports before I head out, but there was one time where the weather guy could not have been more wrong. It rained the entire time I was out there, and the road to leave was in danger of getting washed out. I spent much of that trip in the truck I traded in for the squirrelmobile. So much that I killed the battery in the truck and had to have somebody jump the battery in the rain so I could evacuate with everyone else. That was fun.

But probably the best “disaster” I ever had was when my girlfriend—who hates camping and is literally allergic to the outdoors—decided that she was going to come along. She doesn’t like fishing and won’t eat fish either. I didn’t argue with her because she wanted to spend some quality time outdoors and I’m good with that. So she got some steroid medication from her doctor to help with her allergies and put on a brave face. Well, the steroids worked all right. She didn’t have any allergy problems. What she did have, however, was a serious case of roid rage. She got mad at me because I “didn’t bring her anything to eat” even though she bought and packed the food. She actually kicked the entire tent down. Then she broke a bunch of the poles and whatever wouldn’t break, she tried to throw in the stream. I say it’s funny now because she bought me a new, better, tent once she calmed down.

I’ve got a million of ‘em: falling on my butt while fishing and getting drenched, losing a fight with a fish and having my pole break, accidentally forgetting some vital thing at home, touching some poison ivy in the dark while finding a place to do my business when I was drunk once; the list goes on and on. What about you? What’s your worst camping trip story?