By our third day in the wild, our crew definitely qualified as "rugged and outdoorsy." It was time to give back to this grand valley "City Slicker" style. Outfitted in leather work gloves and hardy fleece, we teamed up with the Grand Teton National Park staff for a service project that involved tearing down an expansive stretch of buck and rail fencing. The offending fence inhibited elk from moving across a major migration corridor within the park. Our grimy-but-grinning group finished the project with a great sense of accomplishment, drawn even closer by our shared endeavor.
I reluctantly packed up and returned home a changed person – someone who risked face-to-face encounters with bears, rose above phobia to ascend a mountain, made a difference for generations of wildlife, and decidedly loves camping.
I know my camping experience was not typical – hot showers and scrumptious, prepared meals are not the norm – but for me, it was just the gentle introduction I needed. I am ready and eager to take the plunge this summer with my family. Campgrounds for every comfort level are abundant; those with access to electricity, showers, and toilet facilities can cost as little as $15 a day. Tents, sleeping bags, and other camping gear can be rented for next to nothing.
I am forever grateful for the opportunity Subaru gave me to step out of suburbia for a while to stroll through sagebrush meadows, meander down untamed trails, sit on a quiet lakeshore, and reflect in silence under a massive, star-studded sky.
It all left me wondering, why did I wait so long?