Have I told you about my strange obsession with solo tent camping? I love to camp (in my Coleman tent - a gift from my brother years ago) at state or national parks and I'm just fine with doing it by myself. There's something invigorating about pulling up to a camp site and setting up a tent and building a fire to the soundtrack of nature.
Most recently I camped at Big Ridge State Park just North of Knoxville. It was one of the last warm days of the year and I reserved a lovely spot by the lake. Of course I failed to take pictures until after the sun went down so they didn't turn out perfectly but I was able to capture some of the serenity of the campground.
Camping in the late fall is wonderful (at least in East Tennessee) because the weather is still sort of mild but most people have gone back to school and work after the summer break.
I have an idea for a book, actually. It springs from reading Wild by Cheryl Strayed and Tracks by Robyn Davidson. Although I'm going to need a full-time job come May when I finish my dissertation, I would love to spend part of the year camping in national parks on the Eastern side of the U.S. and write about it. The idea would be for me to mostly solo camp but when friends and family wanted to join me, they'd be more than welcome. I'd also give myself some time in hotel rooms just to heal. Sleeping on the ground is not that easy.
What would be the point of the book? I think sleeping in the wilderness, cooking on a fire, and remaining somewhat unplugged for a bit might give a person some quiet time. Quiet time can be useful for reflection, writing, reading, planning, and just being.
While the book idea isn't that feasible, I hope to spend some time camping next season and will blog about it along the way.