Words of Wisdom
The Rules of Camping
Camping on a dirt-bike trip has many facets. You should know the area in which you are going to be camping and pack accordingly. You have to get your camping equipment gathered beforehand. And you have to buy supplies.
Some people make a list of things to bring on a dirt-bike campout. I have read several of these lists in other magazines. Many of these articles are informative. This is not going to be another of those lists, however. I call this article, "The Rules of Camping."
Rule 1. Bring your own tent. Of course, you may want to share your tent with any significant other that you cajole (trick?) into coming along. But never, never, never, under any circumstance, allow Brad to sleep in your tent. When I was young, I was naive. I did not know what evenings of heavy chili-dog consumption and beer drinking could do to other peoples guts, and I allowed him to share my tent. (Actually, Brad always showed up without a tent and announced he was sharing my tent.) After several campouts of being awakened to grandiose butt-flapping cavalcades of morning reveille, I announced that I had had enough and that Brad had to bring his own tent. Even if he forgets his tent, hes not getting into my tent anymore.
Rule 2. Bring your own food. Some people like health food and vegetarian faire. Others like chili dogs and beer. I am one of the latter. If you bring enough of your favorite foods to satisfy all your cravings, you will probably have an upset stomach, but you will be happy in the process. You should be happy while camping. Do not count on other people to bring your food. Occasionally, we throw an extra pack of hot dogs in the cooler because we know Brad will show up short, but unless youre Brad, you shouldnt count on it.
Rule 3. Pack everything you own. This is dirt-bike camping with trucks after all. Take anything that you ever used on any previous campout. If you leave an item behind, you will, without fail, need that item.
Rule 4. Any damage incurred during a campout is just too bad. This rule was brought to my attention by Jay and Brad. Jay had a Mini-Weber Kettle that Brad dropped a log on. It was flattened. When Jay said, "Hey!," Brad retorted that it was just the luck of camping. Several folding chairs and camp coolers have also met the same fate.
Rule 5. Do not pour gasoline on a burning fire. Gasoline is a great fire starter. Jay is proud when he gets that explosive whoosh sound when a fire starts. He likes to point out how long the ground appears to burn. (Another mark of a good fire is the ability to melt glass beer bottles without their breaking.) If a fire is off to a poor start, however, do not pour additional gasoline on the flames. You will not only light the surrounding area on fire, you will probably light yourself, to boot. (Brad blames it on the shape of the jar we handed him and the amount of gasoline in said jar. We blame it on his being from a four-letter state.)
These five rules are the primary rules that must always be obeyed. There are many other secondary rules, such as, "Leave the TP just inside your tent door," "Do not set your tent on top of an ant hill," and "Check that you are not setting up your nighttime campsite in the middle of the community dump," that must also be taken into account. But the five above are absolute. Disobey them at your own peril.