A few years ago, I bought a trailer for my son and I to take on vacation. So far, we’ve been to the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, New Mexico and Arkansas. Great times.
Sleeping in air conditioned comfort on a soft bed sure beats sleeping on the ground in a tent. Connor and I tried that. He was in Cub Scouts for a few years. On one campout, we awoke in soggy sleeping bags after a storm. On another, we endured suffocating heat and a mosquito onslaught. Enough of that.
If I ever go tent camping again, it’ll be a new upscale version call glamping. Heard of it? It’s a new word that means glamorous camping.
Recently, I read an Associated Press travel story about a family that took a glamping trip to Yellowstone National Park. The author wrote:
I planned our trip … last-minute, and my family was divided over whether we should camp or stay in a hotel or cabin. In the end, we couldn’t find either. Everything was booked. With visions of trying to pitch a tent in the dark next to angry bison, I reluctantly coughed up $150 a night at the only place I could find that wasn’t an overpriced motel: Yellowstone Under Canvas, a glamping site a few miles outside the park’s west entrance.
The author, her husband and two young daughters stayed in a large canvas tent with a king-size bed, cots, a dresser and wood-burning stove. A nearby restroom had hot water, towels and shampoo. Hardly roughing it.
“As night fell, my husband built a fire, and we fell into a deep sleep under two layers of down,” the woman wrote. “A steady rain pelted the canvas but never entered the tent. The front desk promised to wake us if lightning got too close.”
Check it out
Her conclusion about glamping: She recommends it.
Yellowstone’s glamping website offers more description of the experience.
“Imagine waking up to the sights, sounds and smells of nature in one of the most spectacular places on earth, whilst relaxing in your luxurious Safari tent,” the site says. “Comfortable enough to rival a hotel room, yet with the great outdoors of Yellowstone all around you. … This isn’t camping as we know it.”
Prices for Yellowstone Under Canvas range from $95 to $425 a night and can include activities such as horseback riding, kayaking and a guided wildlife safari.
The glamping trend is spreading. I was amazed when I clicked on glamping.com and found that you can sleep in luxurious tents in Africa, Asia, Australia, Central America and Europe. Forget your traditional ideas of tents.
“Glamping.com has researched the best glamping tent accommodations throughout the world,” the site says. “They offer amenities such as queen-size beds and in some cases … bathroom facilities. When you’re glamping, there’s no tent to pitch. All you have to do is enjoy this unique experience provided by these luxury glamping tents.”
Hmm. After reading about glamping, my mid-sized travel trailer doesn’t seem so luxurious after all. Actually, it seems sort of primitive.
From now on, I will no longer feel shame when my friends accuse me of being a wimp camper.