Dustie Jackman wrote the winning essay for Clark Fork High School

Posted on Monday, June 19th, 2017

Dustie received $300 for her essay on “A Most Memorable Wilderness Experience” in the 2017 FSPW Scholarship Essay Competition.

My Extraordinary Camping Trip

By Dustie Jackman, Clark Fork High Class of 2017

Throughout my short lifetime I’ve been camping with my family in our RV numerous times, but I never was able to experience the real camping with sleeping in tents and only using the lake water as a shower, etc. But the summer of 2016, I had the opportunity to go camping with three of my best friends from school. Even better, we all went alone without any adults.

Don’t worry, we were all 17 at the time, so we had everything under control, It was just an amazing experience at that because it was one of the first times I got to stay the night somewhere without any parents getting in the way of things we wanted to do. So we packed up all the camping attire we needed for four days, loaded up the back of our trucks with canoes and coolers, and we were on our way.

Since we live in such a beautiful area already, the lovely PNW, we didn’t have to travel far to get a great camping site. During our four days we mainly spent our time laying out in the sun, kayaking, canoeing, cliff jumping, hiking, taking pictures, making food over our self-made fires, and just all the good camping stuff. We camped at Green Bay and got set up in a secluded area right at the end near a mountain with the whole side of the beach to ourselves. During this camping trip I learned a lot of valuable lessons, like how to save food.

Sadly, we ran out of most of our good food by the third day, but we made exceptions. I learned that having four family-sized Lays potato chips probably wasn’t the best food choice for most of the trip. I also learned that peeing in the forest is way scarier than I thought it would be, especially at night. But hey, when you gotta go, you go.

One of the hardest things we had to deal with was the kayaks. One morning my friend and I decided to take some kayaks and go around to the other side of the mountain and have breakfast, since it was a cool secluded island, in a way. Eventually, when we were done, we started packing up the kayaks and the wind started getting crazier so the water was creating big waves that moved my kayak like it was nothing because I only weigh about 90 lbs. I was still in my pajamas and a big wave just completely filled my kayak full of water and I got soaked, not a great way to start the morning. Later that day we decided to go kayaking again but this time my friends kayak got filled with water and tipped over and almost sunk. Thankfully, we got it out and everyone survived.

Everyday, I look back at that camping trip and wish I could go back, and live it again. I was truly happy and didn’t have a care in the world. This is how I want life to be like, exploring nature and getting the most out of this earth. We have such a short time in our lives and I feel like we will never fully pursue our true pathway by working a nine-to-five job and come home make dinner and go to bed. I understand this is how some people live their life and they’re content and that’s okay. But for me, I want my life to be filled with adventure, I want to live everyday like an adventure. I love to explore and take photographs and go camping.

And I know I need money to do these things I want, and I should go to college and figure out a passion so I can make money to go on these adventures I want to experience. Sadly I couldn’t explain my camping trip to it’s full potential due to the 750 word limit, but I can assure you that this camping trip was phenomenal and I cannot stress it enough. “A most memorable wilderness experience.” Is something I experienced in four simple days.


One Response

  1. Deb says:

    This is great.

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