Saturday, 31 May 2014

Family Bicycle Camping - May Edition

We've had a long and sunny spring here in Victoria. We had planned to kick off our camping season in April, but that was when planning for the Bike Fest started taking over my life. My parents-in-law have a nice, slightly slanted front yard that welcomes overnight camping guests. We headed there last night, hurriedly cycling so we could set up our tent before the daylight escaped.

It turns out we forgot to pack the kids' fleece and one of the four ground pads. We also didn't pack any kitchen supplies, but we knew we'd have access to the house, so that wasn't as bad. We looked bulkier than necessary with all our pillows, teddies and blankets. I've heard that cargo bikers don't pack light, and as determined as I am to prove that wrong, we are still overpackers.

We ate smokies and s'mores to our hearts' content. The night came, the fire died and we fell asleep to the ducks' lullabies. At the crack of dawn, Nae-J was up. We went into the house and I climbed into the guest bedroom's cozy bed. She insisted on having chocolate and ice cream for breakfast while watching a television show. Is this what she thinks camping is!? When a reasonable hour of waking presented itself, JahJ joined us and he too had ice cream for breakfast.

This morning, the Victoria airport had a community celebration for the grand opening of the flight path, a bicycling/walking trail around the airport. I assumed we were 45 minutes away from the airport, since it's only fifteen minutes by car. Both Jose and I use the MovesApp to track our daily physical activity and it noted that we rode the 19.5km in an hour and 13 minutes. We rode out to the celebration on the Lochside trail, crossing the highway at Beacon Ave. It was easy to find the celebration as several kid riders had decorated bikes and helmets.

This event had free food, ice cream, entertainment and specialty planes flying overhead. We were really impressed with the caliber of the festivities and appreciated that it was not too crowded. The kids didn't want to leave, so we had to dance them back onto the bikes.

I suspect that future camping trips won't be as easy. This one night camping included a home in which to find shelter, kitchen tools and food staples. Our breakfast, lunch and snacks were at a free family event which also had a two bouncy castles. We traveled on a multi-use trail with very few hills. Overall, I say it was a good way to start the camping season. May we all learn to pack what we need and have great family experiences.


  1. This is great! It sounds like the perfect first time out. I expect to learn a lot from you...but don't be disappointed if I still overpack like always.

    1. Part of me wants to go out and buy all the super light, super efficient camping gear, but we're determined to not break the bank: camping is supposed to be a cheap alternative to hotel vacations, right? We'll see what we can budget, first up are pillows because that was just ridiculous! When are you doing your next overnight?

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