Hunting Camp

14 Oct

I have now lived! (according to my family-in-law including my new cousins the Wallaces). Why have I just now lived? Because I’ve been camping out of doors. Jordan, Lydia and I attended the annual Wallace Hunting Camp, and we quite enjoyed ourselves. We arrived shortly before dusk driving 4.5 hours from Tucson to the hunting camp, minor distractions being stopping for gas, an explosive diaper, and a herd of elk beside the road.

We located the camp, and soon Jordan had our spot picked out for our tent, and him and Benji a friend from Nevada set up our tent. Everything was going good until Jordan went to set up the air mattress, only to find that the “pump included” had “batteries not included”. At that point Benji started edging away from the camp hinting that he needed to go take care of something in his camper. He was joking of course, but none of us wanted to be the one to pump the queen sized air mattress exclusively by our very own set of lungs. Fortunately, Jordan had a set of used batteries in a flashlight that mostly did the job, but believe me when I say I was very glad when he got a brand new set and finished the job up by the next night!

The first night was soup and salad, and it turned out quite nice by the variety of soups that were brought. All of the meals were very nicely coordinated by the Camp Assistant Director, Head Director of Meals Aunt Elisabeth.

 

The next day the highlight was the selecting and lumberjacking of the tree that would be used for the fuel for the campfire. Bro Armano Dominguez was our lumberjack, and when he started heading into the forest with his chainsaw, I grabbed my camera and headed after him, along with nearly everyone else in the camp.

A few tense moments, as he started sawing on the tree, and then everyone saw where the tree was and where it was started to sway and very quickly moved out of the way (we would have been fine where we were at.)

I decided I wouldn’t be able to get good pictures of the tree felling, so I took video instead. I was very impressed. I heard stories of how good Bro Armano was, and how one year he landed a tree mere feet away from someone’s RV. (Fortunately the person was away, the tree was moved fairly quickly, and all they had to go by was other peoples stories as well as branches that littered around their RV entrance).

Afterwards came the dismantling of the tree,

as well as a few aspiring (young) hunter/woodsmen that huddled around the base of the tree while some of the older ones helped them count the rings on the stump of the tree. It was neat. ๐Ÿ™‚

The teenage/young men loaded the log pieces into a trailer attached to a 4-wheeler and they hauled them back to the campsite…

where a few other of the young men took turns at the axe to proof their manhood by how many strokes it took to split the logs apart.

I figured out of all of the guys there, Kenneth Zimmerman would have been the best log splitter as he was formerly Mennonite and surely he would have split wood to provide warmth throughout the winter, but when questioning him, he laughed and said “No, we used a [mechanical] splitter.” So much for that! He still turned out to be the best log splitter, and someone decided to try to tease him into splitting more wood for the fire (as it was getting low) by telling him “Y’know Kenneth, I bet you can’t split a log in under 10 strokes!” He turned and looked as if to say “Who said that?!” and then realized what the guy was doing, and he started laughing.

Josiah McLearn and Kenneth Zimmerman…

…as well as the fruits of their pride labor.

One of the cutest parts of the camp was Jude Murray’s little boys. Thomas, Reuben and Jeremiah were all having a blast at camp, as well as the fact that they had their own little tool. Thomas and Reuben both had pocket knives, while Jeremiah had a “torch” (Australian for Flashlight). They were so proud of their tools, and loved to show them off! ๐Ÿ™‚ I had them pose for a picture with their tools,ย when suddenly Ethan Steinke came running up to get in the picture. I couldn’t pass it up. ๐Ÿ™‚

The even more humorous part is while Jude’s boys were enjoying their new toys…Jude was enjoying a new (to him)ย toy of his own…a nice Nissan Titan!

Twigs, pine needles and dirty knees in all, I think Lydia quite enjoyed camping. She got to taste all of the above too (much to my chagrin).

I think she’d go camping again. I have decided that (done a little differently next time) I will enjoy camping again as well. After all, there’s just something in a little kid about tents that I don’t think entirely goes away when they get older.

I think Jordan and I are going to put in for Elk hunting next year. Maybe one of us will get drawn, and we’ll have to get a huge deep chest freezer to keep our delicious, untouched-by-man meat in to enjoy the following year. Maybe next year I’ll not only have a blog about hunting camp again, but also a blog on how to butcher a full sized elk. ๐Ÿ˜€ (I’ll be sure to forewarn you, as I know not everyone enjoys the gruesomeness of wild living such as butchering your own food. I love you Mom! :D)

2 Responses to “Hunting Camp”

  1. Lori November 10, 2011 at 9:29 am #

    Says the girl who enjoyed carving up large fish at the Copper Pot

  2. Lori November 10, 2011 at 9:34 am #

    Now that I think about it, you didn’t mention anything about where the, um, “facilities” were; which is why I don’t like camping and never took you kids camping.

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