Camping mistakes I have made. You shouldn't make them.

  1. I used the blade of a non-lock-blade folding laguille knife to lift a cooking pot off of a fire. We'd just arrived after an arduous 19-kilometre-long (phew) portage and canoe-journey, and the light had fallen quickly, and I'd just had an 'arrival-beer'. Luckily it didn't cut my finger completely off.
    You should have used a stick to lift the pot.

  2. November camping once, I set up my tent on a promontory, on a thin spit of land between lakes. I turned to get the fire going, and a gust of wind threw my tent into a solitary bush by the beach - if it hadn't have been there, my tent would have been in the lake.
    You should have tied down the tent with pegs and against a tree.
  3. To keep a pesky racoon away from my food one evening, I placed my food containers in my tent. Then I went to bed. Then I woke up to the sound of some vicious snuffling outside of my tent. I froze in horror, stepped out of the tent, and watched a bear's dark shape race off into the woods.
    You should have used a bear-bag and tossed it up into a tree - away from the camp.

  4. I didn't bring a lantern, and arrived on site an hour after dark.
    You should have brought a lantern.
  5. I got into a who-can-toss-the-largest-rock contest with 2 very large guys. I had my very first rotator-cuff injury ever, and didn't bring pain-killers.
    You should have not thrown large rocks, and you should have brought pain-killers - injuries hurt so much more at 3 in the morning.

  6. To start a stubborn fire, I tossed naptha gas in the firepit and lit it. I narrowly avoided burning my face off.
    You should have learned how to make a fire properly.
  7. I drank a drinking-box of wine instead of packing glass - it was the environmentally right thing to do. My hangover the next morning was evil.
    You should never drink wine from a box again.

P.S. Read more camping lore from Mungo...

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