Camping Big Sur

Have tent, will camp that was my motto. But not for long.  Here’s a tip! If you plan on camping at any point on a trip remember to bring or buy all the necessities along the way. This is the predicament David and I found ourselves in after driving up to Big Sur along Highway 1 last month.

Excited to camp in the famous Big Sur, we lugged our large two-person tent in a huge check-in suitcase since we would be driving. It sat in the trunk patiently waiting to be used as we passed San Diego, Laguna Beach, Malibu, and Santa Barbara.

As we approached the beautiful cliff-side vistas of Big Sur, it dawned on us we hadn’t stopped at any Walmarts or Targets to purchase pillows, blankets or a blow-up mattress for when it came to camp.

It was too late now, there was no turning back to go and find a store, mainly because we were already in the dead zone for phone service and wouldn’t be able to find any locations.

So instead we drank and ate a ‘what the hell’ meal at Nepenthe, watched the sun set and positively reinforced each other about tonight’s accommodation, or lack thereof. After all our goal was to be camping Big Sur.

We arrived at the campsite at 9pm in the pitch black, not even a streetlight to light the vending machine nearby, drove to our designated lot and shone the car lights on the site. We had come to Big Sur to camp; camp is what we were going to do. David was adamant about it. So we pitched the tent, laid down a yoga mat we had also schlepped from New York and some towels. Our clothing failed as comfortable pillows and the yoga mat protected us from nothing. Yet, David was still adamant we at least try and fall asleep. I was ready to sleep in the car about 3 hours prior to this.

Midnight came and he was the one ready to jump in the car. Needless to say, that wasn’t much better.

But we got through the night – just – and carried on up the road.

Moral of the story, camping can be incredibly fun – with the right equipment. It taught me never to forget any of the necessary items for camping next time, but I can also still say I camped at Big Sur, even if it was for only 3 hours.

Steph_profHerstory is a weekly column on women and travel by Steph Ridhalgh. Steph is a Sydney born; New York based television producer and travel blogger. Not one for being quiet for too long she simply loves talking about travel and lifestyle.

Steph is the founder of STEP(h) ABROAD, a travel and lifestyle resource for those who love to be in the know and know how.

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