Why go on a camping trip?
Why choose to sleep on the ground instead of a bed, in a tent rather than hotel, and some may say, a whole lot of nothing over an assortment of delightful amenities like TV, WiFi, room service and those fancy miniature soaps?
What's the upside of staying outside?
The not-so-secret secret about camping is that it's actually a LOT of FUN - and the reasons why have a lot to do with the very things camping has you go without...like work calls and emails that distract you from being present, bright city lights that conceal brilliantly starry skies and gridlock in urban centers that thwart your best efforts to get out into nature.
The other not-so-secret thing about camping, particularly with Backroads, is that it's nothing like a Calvin and Hobbes comic strip where tarps leak and dad can't figure out how to light a fire and someone always seems to unwittingly rub poison oak on their face. Quite the opposite, camping with Backroads is such a treat, we refer to it as Deluxe Camping. Yes, you read that right. DELUXE camping.
A typical day on a Backroads camping trip delivers the same inspiring activities as our hotel trips, the same on-route support, the same gourmet lunches and the same talented Trip Leaders. But instead of heading back to individual rooms at the end of the day to get dressed for formal dinners that can be hard on kids (and let's be honest, some adults, too) you'll head back to a dynamic campsite in Glacier National Park or the red rock canyons of Southern Utah where luxury service and comfort awaits!
Your team of tireless Camp Crew Assistants have already set up the tents (complete with very civilized cots, camp mattresses and sleeping bags). You'll find that your luggage is waiting for you there. There's an impressive kitchen area with Dutch ovens, a grill and multi-burner range, and a picnic table already set with cold drinks, delicious appetizers and healthy snacks.
On the grass nearby, the "Kids Kit" awaits. It's a bag of soccer balls, Frisbees, Wiffle ball bats and more. Active group games are the norm at camp; no iPhone entertainment needed here. And adults can do their own thing. How does a hot shower sound? Or maybe a cold beer?
The pace on a Backroads camping trip is unhurried, the atmosphere inviting and the location beautiful. Afternoons can be spent however you like - whether it's reading that book you never had time for, heading out for peaceful walk or joining in an energetic kickball game. When dinner rolls around, the menu can range from grilled salmon to pineapple upside down cake, with kid-approved grilled cheese and s'mores on the side. Everyone tucks in together for a big family meal. When the kids finish and get antsy they can just run right off to play again, leaving the adults to continue enjoying their meal or relaxing over a glass of wine or mug of hot tea .
Later, an evening campfire draws people in and encourages conversation. There's something about watching the flames dance and listening to the logs pop that connects you to your fellow travelers faster and more intensely than you could have imagined. You may be so engrossed, in fact, that by the time you look up from the fire you'll find that the rest of the group has already wandered off to bed and you'll suddenly realize you're ready to hit the sack yourself. And sleep comes easy - oh yes, easy! - on your elevated cot topped with its plush mattress and cozy sleeping bag. Let's face it...if your warm, dry and spacious-enough-to-stand-up-in tent came with any more amenities, it just might be a hotel room.
Morning arrives when soft light filters through the leaves above and the scent of coffee wafts over from the camp kitchen. Cereal, yogurt and fruit tide the early-risers over until the hot breakfast appears. From pancakes to frittata, there's something new for breakfast each day. Dishes disappear like magic (thanks Camp Crew!) as your Trip Leaders outline the day ahead. From hiking through the California Redwoods to biking beside the Grand Tetons to rafting or kayak excursions, there's always a new adventure to get excited about. And because you're camping, you're already at your destination. Immersed in the beauty of our national parks and other wild places, you start the day on the threshold of a myriad of trailheads, put-ins and ride starts. This means that any necessary shuttles are short while the options for activities are endless - the perfect ratio for minimizing hassles and maximizing enjoyment.
By the end of it all, when it comes time to pack up on that final morning and say your goodbyes to fellow guests and Trip Leaders alike, chances are you won't find yourself wondering "Why camp?" It's more likely that you'll be asking yourself, "When can we go camping again?"