I enjoy camping and so do my children. I don't enjoy the cold as much as they do but I let myself be convinced to take the kids and a couple of their friends to our favourite camping spot for two nights.
We camp at Brann's farm. It is a working farm and forestry block out the back of Paenagroa. They have several camp sites and three huts. Running water and composting toilets. Fire pits and picnic tables. And not a lot else.
It is heaps of fun not having anything to do. There is a small river that runs through native bush. They have developed a swimming hole and provided innertubes to float down the river in. The river is freezing cold even in the middle of summer but the kids brave it anyway - I wait until the middle of summer until I dip my little toe. It is also the only way to get clean so the smell of bodies in the car on the way home gets a little eye watering.
There are plenty of walks through the bush and around the farm. We walk for an hour through the farm and bush to get to a ropes confidence course. The kids love trying out their bravery and impressing their friends.
The kids (but not me) grab the sacks and go grass sliding down the hills. Then I get to deal with the dirt, brusies, scrapes and grass rashes but they go back for more.
We look at the glow worms at night, cook on a camp fire, play games and lie awake for hours in the night listening to the Moreporks.
Great fun, very back to basics, but we have been going back for six years and will continue to do so.
Thank you Jill and Jeff Brann for opening your farm to us and many others.