The fun part of meeting friends in Joshua Tree is no cell reception. We rely on the old fashioned method of leaving notes on the back of campsite information boards. Just after midnight on Friday, we found our note, drove to our campsite, and discovered that someone else had parked their car and pitched their tent where ours was supposed to be.
Luckily after a few words with the drowsy camper, he moved his car, and we pulled in and let the camper share the site with us until morning. Sage slept most of the drive, woke up for 15 mins while we set up the tent camper, and thankfully went right back to sleep once inside. The next morning her eyes blinked open. She pulled herself up and stomped over to the plastic window. She took a long look outside then a quick look at us, another long look outside, another quick look at us and the world’s biggest smile appeared on her face. “Out” she cried!
We exchanged hellos and hugs with our friends, let Sage run around awhile and left Sabine with our friends to find an old dirt road where we could get in a long run. I have been training for a half marathon and doing the long Saturday run in a new environment, especially one so pretty, was a treat. After our run we came back to find a note saying that everyone had left to Atlantis wall. We ate a quick breakfast, loaded the car and took off to find them. Luckily our car passed Jason and Jacob on our way to the climb so they turned around and followed us there.
Our group dominated the whole climbing area. There were a bunch of top ropes set up, kids running around everywhere (9 total), wrestling matches on crash pads, abandoned half eaten snacks, dirty hands, dusty faces, missed naps, and a symphony of children’s laughter and squeals. To me, it was heaven. An outdoor preschool governed by the kids, moderately supervised by the parents.
In the afternoon we bouldered by our campground, ate dinner, put the kids to sleep and hung out by the campfire. Danny and Katie brought Cards Against Humanity which was hilarious, and once we tired of that, we made it an early night.
Lucky for us, a climb Sabine’s friend told her about was right next to our campsite so early the next morning Sabine and Peter took off to set it up. Jason and I met up with the kids and we finished up our day there. Jacob and Sage were fantastic together. Jacob has moved into a very nurturing role and seemed to have fun playing with Sage who can now keep up a little better than the last time they played. The two of them were bringing me so many smiles. After we all had our chance to climb Headstone rock we packed up and headed home.
To me, there is nothing better in the world than being in the outdoors with family, friends, and children. I had such a memorable weekend and feel deeply grateful that we have such outdoorsy and like-minded people surrounding us.