Cramming a summer into just one week

If my oldest son can ever get a contract from the National Guard recruiter, he’s going to be headed off to Basic soon. That means we have about a week to cram in a summer’s worth of fishing, camping and hiking before he leaves.

My oldest son has been talking about joining the National Guard since he graduated last spring, and he took a year to think about it and get a couple of semesters of college under his belt. He’s done with that first year of college now, and he’s even more determined than before to start his hitch in the Guard.

I am proud of him, but I’m also a little bit bummed about it. I was hoping to take both my boys on a bunch of fishing trips this summer, including a few multi-nighters deep in the backcountry. But Basic Training will eat up pretty much all of Colby’s summer, so he won’t be able to go with us.

However, he’s been having a heck of a time getting any straight answers from his recruiter, so we still don’t have a firm date for when he’ll start Basic. It doesn’t look like he’ll be going before the end of the month, so I took next week off to take the boys on as many adventures as we can cram into a week.

I’d love to take them where I spent some of the best weeks of my own summers, deep in the Bridger Wilderness, but I don’t think we’ll have time to go that far. We’ll at least go to one of the lakes I haunted in my youth that can be reached in a day, though, and we’ll hike in one day, spend a day fishing, then hike out the next. And we’ll try to do some day trips to some good fishing spots on the way to and from our destination, as well.

If we can’t get all the camping done we hope to do, we’ll still have the hunting season to get out in the wilds. I’ve already got a few hunts planned, and he should be in excellent shape from Basic Training so that he can pack my critters out of the hills for me.

We’ll see how much of the backcountry of Wyoming we can see next week, though. The goal is to show him enough that he WANTS to come home after Basic, and not leave us to see the rest of the world.