Total Pageviews

Monday, October 24, 2011

Back from Ocean Pond

Well, we had a fantastic weekend.  It was cold the first night, in fact it was really cold.  Since we had gotten a late start, by the time we got the tent up and everything in it, it was already dark.  The temperature dropped really quickly.  My son started the fire and he did a great job doing so.  He used the cotton balls w/vaseline on them to get it started with a very small amount of tinder and he kept it going until we were ready for bed!
 My son starting the fire.  Great job!
 Campsite, we had water no electricity.
 Me and my wonderful Hubby and his machete.  He had to have one, although we didn't have a need for it on this trip, it's always nice to have.
My new knife!  6 inch blade w/gut hook and sheath.  It worked perfect, I named her Bessie, but my son named her Killer.  LOL

The sun was perfect, thought this was a cool pic.

 He really did split all the wood we need for our second night.  We cooked steaks, potatoes w/onions and baked beans.  We didn't use the pot for the beans, we put the can right on the fire.  Worked great.
 Rotten log.  Couldn't really use it for anything, but he had fun cutting it up.......with BESSIE
 We have fire!
 Having fun after dinner.
 Skipbo anyone?  My husband won, every time.  Sucks
 Ocean Pond, boy the sun was really shining!  Perfect weekend.
 Working together.  Was a beautiful sight.

We were able to use the wild plant recognition book and found a water hyacinth.  Perfectly edible, and can be dried and ground into flour!
So, having been a really long time since a noon lunch, i got the iron skillet and the boston butt and got cooking on the fire.  We cooked entirely on the fire the entire weekend.  Even COFFEE!  I actually think coffee tastes better percolated than in an electric maker.  I think because it gets to a higher temperature, not sure......but it was wonderful Saturday morning when the temp. was 44.  Warmed up a lil and got breakfast started.  Bacon, eggs and biscuits.  I wasn't sure how the biscuits would turn out, I used a pot and some oil in the bottom, we put it at the back of the fire and covered it, checking it often.  Man did they turn out good.
Second day was awesome.  Since I recently had knee surgery we had to keep the walking to a minimum this time, but we were able to walk quite a bit more than I thought I could.  Was nice out there.  We did some compass reading, my son kept us in the correct direction, we did a little fishing with giant red hook worms.  My son was squeemish about baiting the hook so we helped him out, but a big fish kept hitting the rod hard and we were unable to catch anything except for mosquito bites.  Good lord, the bugs, no seeums, mosquitoes, bees, and one really big spider (YUK).  Bug spray with Deet was a necessity, but don't lick your lips afterwards.....ewwwwww, tongue went numb and tasted like ^&*(.  Once you're sprayed down the bugs are a non-issue.

Plant recognition is harder than we thought it would be.  You have to read everything and pay attention to minute details in the description and the actual plant!  Could mean the difference between a meal and the ER.  Until we get more comfortable, we will not be eating the wild plants, period!

We took a nice walk around the camp ground, it is wild boar season and there were a bunch of hunters, there was a group of them skinning a huge pig, bet that was really good!  Lots of dogs around, we did take our dog and he really seemed to like being in the woods once he was used to his surroundings.  There was even a man with a cat!  Yes a CAT.   The second night we had to make sure all of our food and necessities were secure because of raccoons, a lot of them!  In the dark it almost seems like they surrounded us, well hell they could have been surrounding us and we would have never known.  Thats a scary thought, we had an experience last year camping in the keys with the local raccoons.  They seemed ok from a distance almost cute and cuddly, but at night they would fight and make so much noise, it was crazy.  I would not want to get up close.

All in all, everything turned out great!  We didn't do everything we had intended but at the same time accomplished a few things we set out to do, compass reading, making fire without the use of a lighter, cooking over the camp fire the entire trip and some plant recognition.

I am looking forward to our next trip, hoping we can take a hike with our day packs and spend the night in the woods without the necessities.  We think it is important to get these things set to memory and educate our sons how to survive.  Some people may think it's silly, but we do not.  In fact when TSHTF, we will be ready!

Hope you enjoyed our trip as much as we did. 

Bye, Bye for now,


  1. Can start with wild plants you already know... like dandelion. :) Very early spring (and oddly it seems the better tasting ones grow in the worst conditions - dry, poor soil... not sure why that is..) They are a slightly bitter green.. bitterness gets more pronounced with increased temperatures and age of the plant.

  2. Anne is dead right. start with what you can identify easily and then move on to other wild edibles.

    loved the pics - it seems that you all had a really great time - i am glad! hope your knee heals up nicely!

  3. Thanks for the comments! I'm looking forward to much more.
    My son is still talking about stating the fire with his friends, so I am taking that as a positive that he enjoyed himself.
    The knee is feeling pretty good, on to the right knee on November 1.

  4. What an awesome way to spend a few days Julz, I did enjoy the guided camping trip. Your son is funny with your knife, we need to get a couple of good knives but haven't yet gotten to doing the research. I think good training will always be handy whether we are around to see the when TSHTF or not. I wish my parents had done this sort of things for us, know it's on us to educate ourselves but it's a good thing you're doing. And it looks like so much fun. Great post.