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Volume II
August 6, 2010

The Happy Camper
By Jeanne Wolfley

A happy camper is a prepared camper. Have your meals planned and prepared as much as possible and stored in such a way that you donít have to wonder whatís for dinner.

Have you ever met a grumpy camper? They donít usually stay campers for long; in fact they may end up hating the whole experience. On the other hand, a well thought out camping trip can be one of the top ten on your list of the most enjoyable things to do in this life.

After a few camping trips, traditions and favorite foods start to emerge. You might even get lucky and have a person in your group that loves to Dutch oven cook and wants to do it as their fulltime camping job. But even those with the love of outdoor cooking donít want to be tied down with all the meals and become the chief cook and bottle washer.

The joy of camp cooking is making sure your meals are easy, fun and satisfying. I donít know about the rest of you, but I seem to eat twice as much food when I am up in the mountains. That fresh air really brings out the appetite in me.

The most often forgotten camping equipment is dishwashing equipment, trash bags and, of course, matches. Not all camping areas provide drinking water and some require that you bring your own firewood. These are important facts to find out before heading out.

When you are planning a camping trip make sure you make a checklist several days before the outing. I like to save the list from year to year. You can always delete or add a few things depending on where you are going and what will be available to you.

Here is a list of eight categories for your checklist:

1. Kitchen items, e.g., aluminum foil, paper towels etc.

2. Cooking utensils, e.g., can opener, spatula, pans etc.

3. Drinks, e.g., water, hot chocolate etc.

4. Food and coolers; donít forget the marshmallows

5. Personal items; remember most camping is in the mountains and it gets cold at night so donít forget a jacket.

6. Sleeping arrangements; make sure you can stay warm and dry. How about a pillow?

7. Condiments, e.g., seasonings, ketchup etc.

8. Miscellaneous, e.g., bug spray, flash lights, batteries, etc.

Happy Camping! Remember that a little dirt never hurt anyone and that a family that camps together creates some pretty sweet memories together.

* DVO welcomes your kitchen hints and cooking or nutrition questions! Email us and we'll post your hints and Q/A's in upcoming newsletters! *

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