The Backyard Bash – Getting Everyone ‘On a Mish’

“On a Mish” #351 The Backyard Bash. Ladbrooks Compound, Canterbury, Aotearoa. 14.10.2022. With all that is going on, both in Aotearoa / New Zealand and around the world, it has been awesome to have my Whanau by my side. Their support (along with the support for NzHikes) has really helped keep me sane during very stressful times. And as the years have drifted on and I have remained stuck in limbo waiting for a way out of Injury-town, I have needed all the help and support I can get…

A huge goal with has been to get more people into the outdoors, my whanau included. I really want my nephew and niece to get hooked on hiking and camping just like me, and I do all I can to make sure their outdoor experiences (at this stage) are full of fun instead of failure. Now due to a rather gnarly trip up the Rakaia River with my cousin I wasn’t going to be able to go very far, so I had to think hard to come up with a suitable location.

Luckily for me I am in a location with plenty of flat grass around, just perfect for camping. Location sorted, now it is time to assemble the expedition team. Once the team was assembled we began the gruelling trek to our basecamp, a trek of around 20 metres! The weather was just right for camping and we found a great sheltered spot which was out of the cool spring easterly. After establishing pitching tents and setting up basecamp we began the hunt for firewood as the day came to an end and the setting sun of dusk began to colour the sky before the arrival of the stars and darkness.

I was in rather bad shape and this meant I couldn’t move around too much, so I appointed myself as camp chef and secured a spot beside the ‘kitchen’. Along with soup cooked on the camping stove, we also enjoyed cooking sausages on sticks over the openfire. The simple task of holding a sausage over a fire brings out the kid in all of us, including the kids! Dessert was similar to dinner, as we changed from meat to sweets, with marshmallows melting to perfection over the flames.

With it now being way past the kids normal bedtime, it was time to attempt to get them to sleep. The youngest member of the team (only 6) had blood-sugar levels that needed to come down before sleeping, so a couple of stories needed to be told before the camp fell silent. Unfortunately or luckily, my broken body was in no shape to be sleeping outside, so I took the option of a bed inside the house over sleeping in a tent. A decision that might haunt me for a while, as my sister survived the night outside camping and I didn’t!

Early-ish the next morning I headed out to the campsite and began to get breakfast set up. A hot drink and bowl of warm porridge was an excellent start to the day, and it matched the simple camping setting we were in. After smashing a feed it was time to pack up, and the fact that the kids were still happy and enjoying themselves meant the mission was a success! The super simple night out really proved that you don’t need to go far to have an outdoor adventure, and we took another step closer towards getting the youngsters hooked on hiking / camping. After everything was packed up I went back to very little as I was still suffering from the Rakaia mish, a mission that may go down as one of the best adventures I have ever had since my injury back in 2020

4 Generations enjoying a mish!

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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