One night I started thinking about our old family camps. My dad’s ideal camp was something in the middle of nowhere with no one else in sight. We had camps at Press Lake, Valora and Graham. I recall the Valora bears wanting to get in our camp while we were in it, likely the reason I’m so afraid of them. Access to the Graham camp involved a long boat ride, complete with a Siamese cat and a Collie. If anything had happened to my dad I doubt my mom and I could have found our way out. Maybe my dog Lassie could have somehow gone for help. Or does that only happen on television? Mornings at camp always started with my dad banging around pots and pans at a very early hour, and later involved fishing and bugs. Today my idea of roughing it is a hotel room with tiny shampoo bottles and cable television, now that’s a treat.
Here are a few books that you happy campers out there might be interested in. Some of them are not in our library system, but can be borrowed from out of town.
Cabin Cookin’... by Rick Black
When I think of cabin cooking I think bacon, eggs and fried potatoes. Rick has recipes for the grill, Dutch oven and cast iron cookware. He features many interesting sounding recipes such as a fish and vegetable skillet, sweet corn soup, onion wrapped taters and a dish involving polish sausage, onions, garlic and beer. That could be interesting in close quarters.
For even more recipes try searching http://www.allrecipes.com A search under the word campfire results in some delicious sounding desserts such as sugared campfire donuts, banana splits and pineapple cakes. Sounds good to me. It almost makes me want to go camping - almost.
I can see how this book got its title. It has information on a wide range of subjects. You can find out about building a dock, closing your camp for the winter, living with wildlife, water and septic systems and toilet problems. I wish we could have had toilet problems at our camp. A toilet would have been a luxury. And our water system, involved a pail and a lake.
This book tells you all you need to know from choosing a location, inspecting the cottage, financing and purchasing. There’s also information on selling your camp or handing it down to the next generation. And if you’re retiring shortly you might want to read about relocating full time to your summer home. Not that I’m jealous of anyone retiring shortly.
Compact Cabins Simple Living in 1000 Square Feet Or Less by Gerald Rowan
This book features 62 designs for cabins ranging from 100 square feet and up and all of them include a sleeping area and kitchen and bath facilities. It includes chapters on alternative energy sources, and low maintenance building materials. After all, who wants to spend time painting or staining when you could be fishing. Each design includes a floor plan and ideas on how to maximize your space.
Small Engine Repair Reference Center
The Virtual Collection on our webpage covers a wide range of subjects. The Small Engine Repair database might be just the thing you need to keep things running smoothly at camp. There’s repair information on outboard motors, personal water craft, all terrain vehicles and even chain saws and lawn mowers. You might want to do your repairs at home, so when you get to your cottage you can just relax and have fun.
Mary J.L. Black and Waverley carry Cottage Life magazine and back issues can be borrowed. The Summer 2009 issue featured topics such as tomato recipes, building a barbeque work centre and what to do when a husband and wife have different visions of their dream cottage. Their website www.cottagelife.com has a handy index dating back to 1988. A search under the word dock for example, lists 51 articles. Older articles are available through our Interlibrary Loan department.
Happy camping everyone.
Karen Craib, Library Technician