I had never backpacked or camped in my life but always wanted to try it out. I found Escape the Pavement by chance and bam! They exactly catered to what I wanted and much much more. A summary of my experience... Shuttled to base camp on a Friday evening (yes, they offer shuttles) to find the tents already setup, hot food in preparation, camping area cleared, sprayed with cedar oil for protection from bugs and criiters; backpack, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, headlamps, utensils, bugspays, first aid kit, emergency communication, even a solar cell phone charger all laid out and ready. I ate my food (prepared with dietary restrictions in mind) around the camp fire, socializing with fellow campers and enjoying the lovely campfire music show. I got my money's worth by the time I hit my tent that night and the weekend was just getting started. Woke up to a hot breakfast, an informative session on backpacking and safety, a short yoga session, followed by hike in the woods. I have been on several hikes but never walked with an encyclopedia on birds, trees, fruits, animals,... like the Founder and Organizer Bethany was. By the time we took a break, we knew which fruits, flowers, leaves were edible and which ones we should stay away from. You would think that you are stuffed already with the black berries that you ate fresh out of trees along the way until you unpack the sumptuous lunch that was packed for you. By the time we completed the hike, we found that the tents, hammocks, tensiles, etc were setup already in the new campsite for the night and food was cooking. Had a sumptuous dinner along with wilderness survival lessons, back country cooking lessons and gathered for the Saturday night fun with fellow campers. Even an unexpected rain could not spoil the experience as the organizers made sure that you don't get wet and you are in a safe shelter & comfortable. They even setup a new tent for me in the middle of the night as my tent started leaking. As I thought that this experience could not be better, we went for a short fun night hike with full moon on a clear sky after a storm. I can keep saying more about the great experience as one more day of fun is left before we wrapped up, but I will leave it to you to experience for yourself. If you are looking to have a relaxing weekend, embrace the nature without all the hardwork, meet new people, learn new things and more importantly have fun, Escape the Pavement!
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