Some girls are more hardcore than you but that’s not who this column is about. If your special lady has doubts about or never wanted to go camping and you do; here are some helpful tips to change her mind.
Listen and Learn
Now I know this is hard for a lot of us, but you really need to listen to her. Can she handle cold nights? If not, maybe you should camp at a lower elevation where the nights are not so crisp. Can she handle using the woods for her bathroom? If not, a campground with restrooms might be in order. Does she even want to try camping? That’s an important one.
Location, Location, Location
If you love to fish and she doesn’t, that treeless lake out in the plains is not going to fly. Find out what she likes to do. If she wants to hike, camp near a trailhead. If she wants to go boating, camp near a lake. Some people prefer lush mountain valleys while others are attracted to the desert. Ask a few questions and you just might find out that treeless lake will work after all.
Tone it Down
If you’re an avid camper and she is not, you probably shouldn’t plan a backpacking trip on the first try. Sleeping on the ground in a pup tent and eating freeze-dried dinners is a tad bit extreme for some. If she’s new to this camping thing you want to bring her along slowly. Consider car-camping where you can bring all the creature-comforts that will make this outing a success.
Everybody Needs a Good Night’s Sleep
If you have a pop-up camper or a trailer which face it, is camping at its easiest, comfort is a given. If you are using a tent, get a big enough one so she can stand up when changing clothes and big enough to hold at least a queen sized air-mattress. Now this isn’t just for her; you will sleep better too. There are many folks whose desire to camp was renewed when they started to sleep on an air mattress. Also make sure you have good, large sleeping bags. There are some you can zip together which are way more fun than separate ones.
Eat Early and Often
If you make pre-made breakfasts such as breakfast burritos, wrapped in foil, you can just toss them in the coals when you get up and breakfast is done in no time, with no mess to clean up. Remember, you are trying to get her to enjoy the campout. Having to cook or wait while someone else cooks, then having a mess to clean up before your day has barely started is no fun. Bring a camp-stove, especially if she’s a coffee addict so you can fire up that coffee pot without waiting for the fire to be rebuilt.
If you both like to drink, bring more than just a case of beer. Yes, some girls love beer too but as the old saying goes, “Variety is the spice of life.” Maybe bring some wine or how about cocktails? Coleman actually makes a battery powered blender just for camping. It doesn’t get much better than a freshly blended Pina- Colada or Banana Daiquiri out in the wilderness. Bring some of those little drink umbrellas and really impress her with your resourcefulness.
The Company You Keep
Sure, sitting around the campfire, telling off-color jokes and acting like the pigs we are is fun with the guys; not so much for her. You don’t have to go it alone but you may want to consider who you’re camping with. Including other couples is a good idea but if none are available, that shouldn’t be a deal breaker. Just be wary about inviting your crude frat buddy from college if he’s been single all these years.