Camping in the city would almost be quieter than in parks today
It’s the middle of August, and it’s pretty obvious that Vancouver is a little quieter these days. That certainly won’t be the case when everyone heads back to school and they wrap up their holidays in a few weeks.
The longer and drier days of summer certainly bring with them fewer cars on the road, as many of us vacate the city and seek out some rest and relaxation in B.C.’s back country.
For the past four years our family has packed up our bags and headed out to a provincial campground hoping to get away from the hustle and bustle of a big urban centre.
If you read all the glossy brochures, you would easily believe that living in one of B.C.’s forests is an instant path to paradise. Unfortunately, my experience leaving the city hasn’t always guaranteed peace and solitude.
A week ago our family traveled about 125 kilometres east of Vancouver and parked ourselves in what is a typical provincial campsite. For the first time ever, we decided to ditch the rustic tenting experience and opted to rent a small recreational vehicle instead.
It came with all the amenities one would expect with a modern camper van such as flush toilets, a shower and running water. But soon after we settled in our campsite, we realized the tranquility we were seeking was going to be rather elusive.
No fewer than three gas generators were fired up near our site. The noisy beasts help to provide electricity and the power needed to operate a microwave oven. When they operated in unison, it was even a tad difficult to focus on the conversation you were having with someone only feet away from you at the campfire.
Then there were the countless obnoxious guests who felt that shouting out their every command was preferable to using an inside voice. “Hazel, did you bring the marshmallows?” bellowed one camper about 150 feet away from us. Another camper trying to teach her puppy a few tricks failed to appreciate that her voice echoed throughout the forest with the subtlety of a sumo wrestler.
After the whole camping trip was over, I was certainly glad to get back to the peace and tranquility of my urban New Westminster neighbourhood. It’s hard to believe, but sitting on my front porch with a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon was actually quieter than what I experienced in the wilderness.
So the next time someone tells you they’re leaving the city to get away from the noise, remind them that this may well be just another ‘rural’ myth.