Amanda and I returned to Candyland: REI. She was fitted for a hardcore pair of hiking mid-heights, which technical features best any pair I’ve owned. Adequate footwear was sorely needed for the trail, your feet are the most important bit of kit.

I had a chance to check out an Osprey 60L pack. I found it comfy and manufactured of high-quality materials, I felt like I was being hugged from behind, cradled. I have a pack currently, a $59 Meijer clearance find with an actual frame. It’s made out what I can only describe as rough, cheap material, but it’ll do for now.

My moisture wicking baselayer and Balaclava arrived yesterday, along with my sock liners. I look like a ninja. I’m still missing a hardshell (but have ancient frogtoggs for now), non-cotton pants, layering glove system as baseline winter backpacking kit. It’s still fall, for now.


Weekend backpacking plans have turned into weekend RV/Backpacking plans. There’s snow in the forecast now, although temperatures are only dropping to 28F at night. Still, I’d rather have a solid home base if we are to be an hour and a half from home.

The cost differential is $30/night, along with $42.60 in fuel with the RV. Considering cabins start at $160/night, that’s still not bad at all. Nightly rates would only be $10 ($0 if staying in the woods), along with $11.51 in fuel if tent camping.

Which, wow. $11.51 in base cost for a weekend getaway in the forest for tent camping. That’s ridiculous. Paying for an actual campground would be $31.51 total.

Driving to and back from Sanibel Island would be $188.10 for tent, $696 for RV in fuel costs. The only problem with taking the RV to park on the beach is that I quite literally wouldn’t want to leave.

I still marvel from time to time that early this year I lived on the road in an RV. I moved campground to campground, following my heart wherever it took me. The last campground had a pool and I was able to go swimming every day if I wanted. The few acre grass backlot and ample gravel paths wrapping around the lake was the perfect bike trail and dragging around my red wagon behind my electric bike always put a smile on my face.

My monthly lot rent was around $380 and I didn’t live anywhere. Everywhere I went, no one knew my name. New sights outside my window, and falling asleep to the sound of rain on the tin roof. I dropped weight, I spent my days outside and constantly doing something.

It’s a shame that I didn’t have the opportunity to tour the US and live as a nomad, but there are certain responsibilities that cannot be shrugged; such as parenting a child. With my experiences growing up, I cannot afford not to be a stable and reliable father.

Would have I done things differently? No. Nothing can compare to cohabitating a home with a partner, budgeting together, falling asleep each night wrapped up in them, and there’s always summer vacations.

I’ll always find it friendlier and more enjoyable with two, but I need to venture deep into the woods and camp solo at some point, if not for anything else then to prove to myself that I can.

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