A couple weeks ago, I got to do something I’ve never done before: I camped in the desert!
And it wasn’t Coachella camping where I had the luxury of going to a shower, having reception, and having a decent bathroom. It was, in my opinion, roughing it.
And it was AWESOME.
My friends and I decided to go camping at Joshua Tree from Friday to Sunday. I had absolutely no idea what to expect other than the fact that I won’t be able to shower for a few days and I’ll be surrounded by nature. I wasn’t too worried about the latter but it was the not showering thing that kind of scared me.
See, I don’t think I’m high-maintenance but I do enjoy being clean and hygienic. The thought of 10 people not showering and being in close proximity to each other was a little less than ideal. Nevertheless, I surrendered myself to the experience because I wasn’t going to let that get in the way of me enjoying my time at Joshua Tree. And in retrospect, it never should have been an issue in the first place. But, I never did this before so it just weighed on my mind.
Anyway, the whole experience was absolutely amazing. Losing cell phone reception was a blessing in disguise. I got to disconnect from the world and actually experience nature in all its glory. It was stunning.
There were so many cool rock formations, a lot more greenery than I anticipated, and a few desert animals. It was unlike anything I’ve ever seen before.
We were lucky enough to camp by huge boulders that we could climb on. It gave us a really picturesque view of the desert that I wish I could re-experience in the city.
We mostly sat in the shade trying not to get heatstroke from the sun. It was SO hot outside, almost too hot to do anything. Several of us went rock climbing nearby while others just tried to stay cool. I went on a few hikes and got to see some really cool sights.
And at night – oh man! You wouldn’t believe how many stars there were in the sky. Star gazing was the number one thing I was looking forward to. In the city, light pollution and smog fogs up the sky and you can only see a handful of stars. It’s a blessing when it’s a clear night and you’re a little out of the city and you can see a few more stars. But at Joshua Tree, it was something else. There were stars everywhere and I could have sworn I saw a couple shooting stars.
It was so refreshing to see the whole night sky and not have neighboring city lights block the view. It was quiet, peaceful, and beautiful.
For some reason, I was the first to wake up both mornings we were there. I probably got up around 5:30am…just in time to see the sunrise! I made sure to go a little bit away from our campground so I could just be by myself and appreciate what I was seeing alone.
I just stood there for a few minutes, watching the sun slowly come up above the mountains in the distance. It was just a really tranquil moment. It was so quiet around me; no cars, no people talking, absolutely nothing. It really makes you realize that you’re rarely ever alone in your day to day life and that there’s always some noise in the background. But there, it was silence.
I would have to say that dawn was my favorite part of the day. It wasn’t hot, it was quiet, there was a brand new day ahead of us just waiting to be filled with new memories, and everything had a golden tint to it. I never thought I would enjoy camping as much as I did but it was honestly one of the best experiences I’ve ever had and I can’t wait for the next camping trip. I thing Sequoia National Park will be our next destination.
It was so refreshing to connect with my friends and nature without being distracted by technology.
I’m so grateful I got to do this and I’m ready to hit the road to embark on our next adventure!