When we were younger and our kids were still at home summer was our largest event That was the season for planning camping adventures. Living in the pacific northwest, we enjoyed an abundance of campgrounds. However, in the event we found them already occupied, and the fire season wasn’t extreme, we headed for a wilderness area were camping was free. One of a favorite places, after the kids were old enough to hike and carry their share of the burden, was the Three Sisters Wilderness area.

A grand choice was Horse Lake. Reaching Horse Lake required a ten-mile hike after leaving our vehicle. So the decision had to unanimous from the outset – twenty miles of steep, narrow trails was too much for one day. It was an automatic overnighter. But after reaching our destination we often found the lake teemed with firm, hungry trout. But we were taking the chance on competing with May Flies, and other airborne insects. So we always took enough provisions to see us through, should such an event occur.

Job one was to pitch the tent, and then, using a rope, we hoisted out provisions into a tree beyond the reach of a bear, and far enough from the tent to avoid any conflict of interest.

We raised five girls. Each person developed their individual tastes, even the twins. So dull moments were rare.

Number one insisted on keeping her makeup fresh, just in case someone she knew stumbled into our remote camp. She was also the one who always took a curling iron on a motorcycle journey. That was her way of combating “helmet hair”.

Number two was often preoccupied. She rolled with the blows, no matter what they were. Even when her line was in the water and taunt she sometimes failed to notice a fish was yanking on the other end.

Numbers three and four are twins. While they shared much of what each brought, there was always a turf war. Sometimes it was a dull roar, but on occasion it became physical. Dirt had no effect on them. They were fourteen before I succeeded in knowing which one was which. So I sympathized with the teachers when they traded clothes and classes.

Number five was organized. Everything she brought had its place. Everything she did was done on schedule. Things that could be folded were. She was our goal setter. No matter how long the struggle, after the dust had settled, she had usually succeeded.

In spite of the many differences of opinions, confrontations, silent battles, pouting, tattling, and temper tantrums they each enriched out lives beyond measure.

Without question, summer was our favorite season of the year.

<a href=””>In the Summertime</a>