Riley's first camping trip is under the belt... and it was doable. I won't lie- I was nervous. We weren't sure how to do sleeping arrangements with a baby- especially since the only tent we have is a super compact 2 man backpackers tent. John and I fit but we're like sardines in there. Once we packed up and headed out with our friends Notch and Carissa, I felt a little at ease since Notch had a large tent that we could even stand up in... which meant that i could bring the pack'n'play and set it up in the tent! Yay!! I'm thankful that our first camping attempt was "car camping: as apposed to the backpacking (hike in a few miles, set up camp where there's not a sign of another person for miles) like we have become privy to since being married. Since it was car camping, I could bring my p'n'p and I could completely over pack without guilt or suffering the consequences of having to hike all that extra weight in.
We left around 4:30pm on Thursday for a 3-4 hour estimated trip. Well the head winds and fuel efficiency issue got the best of Notch's truck and after stopping a couple times- once to figure out which exit to take and another to chow down on our delectable MRE's (thankfully I didn't get the veggie and cheese omelet one- my condolences to Carissa)- we rolled into our campsite by 10:30 that night!
Luckily Carissa had some cool climbin' girlfriends (Chelsea and Amanda) who were road tripin' for a few months and they met us at Joshua Tree and even reserved a camp site for us. If not for them, who knows where we'd stay since all the sites were paid out by 3 that afternoon! So we set up camp in the dark by only the dim glow of flash lights but awoke to the beauty of Joshua Tree National Park!
I have to admit that my expectations were high once I realized that I'd be able to bring the P'n'P. After all, Riley's sleeping 12-13 hours now so why should it be different just cuz we're outside? Because it was SUPER DUPER chilly- like low 40's at night, and my little Riley only sleeps with his arms thrown up over his head as if to signal a "touch down!" Despite my bundling him in layers of PJ's and blankets, little hands and little face got very cold so he upgraded into a shared sleeping bag with mom since it was Carissa and I in the tent and I'm (perhaps overly) paranoid about inconveniencing others with Riley's cries. We cuddled up and he laid like a little inchworm on my chest/belly and he seemed to be just fine with that... for a little while. Then it got to the point where he was letting out cries every 15 mins or so and I figured if he wasn't comfy anymore, and I wasn't comfy to begin with... something had to change. So we spent the remainder of the night in the truck... And I didn't sleep, but it worked.
Wouldn't you know it.. he went down just fine for his mid-morning nap- and so did I!
He hung in great for the climbing and there was plenty of help that we are so grateful of!
And so we climbed!
We ended up spending 2 nights there. We enjoyed the camp fire and camaraderie. Man- the climbing community sure is welcoming and friendly! If I were not married, I could see myself fitting into that free-spirited climbing nomad just traveling around for the next big climb! It's pretty cool!
We left Saturday night instead of sleeping there. I took the 11-3am shift driving and it was fine. I don't mind driving at night.. I get in the zone- Jam away to my IPOD! Got home at 3 and took a quick shower before enjoying sleep in our comfy bed! Riley didn't make a peep the whole way home!