Why you should never give yourself a sponge bath while drinking.
I am officially the dirty camper.
I thought before on hiking trips those days and days of camping fun that I knew what being the dirty camper was.
Even though I have jumped in crisp cold alpine lakes and frolicked beneath water falls nearly every day of this hiking filled vacation, those events did nothing to remove the film of filth that dirty campers wear.
I carefully walked across smooth stones just covered with enough algae to possibly cause one to slip and then dunked my whole body even splashing icy cold lake waters on my braids at Convict Lake two days ago.
Still the dirty camper filth persisted.
Last night I had a plan to give myself a sponge bath.
We were returning from a day of hiking nearly every lake in the Little Lakes Valley, including Chicken Shit Lake ( that may or may not be the correct name) it was a glorious day on the mountain and I was not prepared at all for the evening from hell.
We had every intention to camp on BLM land near Aspendell that evening. We were planning on hiking the Bishop Creek Trail through one mountain pass or another the following morning. What with it being early fall and this area being just blanketed in aspen trees it should have been a great hike.
Except for as we neared the town of Aspendell I noticed with alarm that the thunder heads I thought we were driving towards were thick clouds of grey smoke from the Rough Fire in Kings Canyon beyond the pass.
The area was so terribly smoky; there was no way in hell we could camp there.
Even though we were well over thirty minutes out-of-the-way and at eight thousand feet we drove back down to the valley floor and to Bishop, me grumbling over the wasted gas.
Once we reached Bishop I had no idea where we could camp in that area on BLM land ( for free, on a dirt road somewhere) being that this was a Saturday night and already pressing on six p.m. The chances of finding a camp site were slim to none.
I vaguely thought about staying at the youth hostel in Lone Pine. At least I could shower for the first time in a week! But I’m pretty sure they don’t take dogs.
Luckily a friend completely came through for us ( I complained to the exact correct person, apparently) and gave me a gps coordinate to camp at in a canyon in a desert.
When we finally arrived the desert sunset was just amazing what with the thunder heads and the wild-fire smoke.
It was hot though. And very buggy. I’m much more a mountain girl than a desert girl. I cracked open a compleat you delicious sour beer a friend had given to me for my birthday and was half way through it ( and it was almost dark at this point) when I remembered I wanted to take a sponge bath and do something about my filth. The beer may have helped me forget about this goal earlier in the evening.
I heated up some water on the stove and even decided it would be a great idea to try to shave my legs during a sponge bath by candle light while slightly buzzed.
I would like to say this story ends with a drinker sponge bath, but it does not.
Here is the email I sent to my boyfriend the next a.m. on the terrible desert camping incident and everything that happened there after.
Last night was terrible.
I had to pack up that camp site and leave at ten p.m. As my car was completely infested with bugs.
I had to sleep with the windows down ( not that I slept!) as it was so fucking hot. I gave up at one point, put all the windows up and tried to sleep in my hot, buggy sauna ( I tried sleeping inside my sleeping bag where the bugs couldn’t bite me) but I was just dripping sweat.
So I thought the best thing to do would be to drive with the windows down to another camp site and try to blow the bugs out.
That worked some what.
But I was still getting bit and dripping with sweat so I thought, fuck it, it’s 11 pm I doubt a ranger is going to yell at me this late if they catch me sleeping in my car at the trail head ( it’s clearly marked) no camping.
So I drove to the trailhead at 11pm.
It was super, super hot in the valley and I was still pissed at Carly dog for eating all my super expensive beef jerky earlier like the douche she is,so I made her sleep on her dog bed next to me not on me like she has been doing the past few nights.
Even at the trail head I was still pretty hot so I forced her on her bed, yelling ( quietly at her incase there were other people camping illegally in their cars) at her to stay on her bed.
I got up one time to pee after that and she tried climbing on my sleeping bag again so I forced her back on her bed…
And than she peed every where.
I honestly don’t know if she did it to be a dick because she didn’t want to sleep in her bed ( luckily for me, she peed on her bed and it went underneath it too. I realized what had happened, well I could hear her peeing and got up right away to clean it up. If I had not noticed it would have soaked into your sleeping pad eventually) or if I scared her when I yelled at her but she did not act like she wanted to get out of the car and pee with me at all… All she wanted was to cuddle on my sleeping bag! The more I think about it the more I think she did it on purpose so she wouldn’t have to sleep on her bed.
So I got NO sleep last night at all.
But I woke up to an absolutely amazing sunrise this morning and this camp site is not smoky at all which is a damn miracle!
I don’t have cell service but I’m dying to tell you all this so I’ll send it in an email when I get service.
Love you babe!
7:33 September 13
I woke up this morning ( Ha! Like I slept at all!) jumped out of my desperately reaching for the coffee to see streaks of brown mud and streaks of long leg hair covering my legs.
Not only did I only shave patches of my legs but I pretty much just pushed the dirt around, not actually removing any.
This is why I am the dirtiest camper.