Disclosure Forms of the Outdoor Risk Variety

by Rebecca on November 23, 2009

in Outdoor Observations, The Camping Adventures

~Gather 'Round~

~Gather 'Round~

A few nights ago, my parents and I were discussing some of the tragic and hilarious outdoor trips we’ve taken with “risks’ in the past. A ‘risk’ is defined by someone you’ve never camped, fished, hiked, hunted or broke bread in the dirt with in. So basically, everyone reading this would be considered a ‘risk’ just as I would be a ‘risk’ (safe of course) if you invited me along for one of your trips. It’s all about the unknown factor.

On the whole, ’risks’ are freakin scary (insert proper horror movie music here) to invite and bring along for the first outdoor trip. ~You just don’t know~ In my experience, the person that seems like the most sane and level headed human inside a city house can morph into a frothing lunatic under the influence of outdoor air and campfire smoke. I have witnessed and survived such mystical transformations.

I’ll probably even tell some of those stories here on Zee Outdooress. But not today, today I wanted to focus on a thought process I started while talking to my parents. What if there was a general disclosure form one could present to potential risks before you purchased propane or hot dogs? Something you could say, “hey before we head to the great blue sky, I’d like you to answer this quick little questionnaire” ~  (it may be advisable to hook them up to a lie detector while they answer) For Example:

True or False~

  • I only camp where they have running toilets, outhouses are unsanitary and bushes for the uncivilized.
  • I am allergic to one or more of the following—campfire smoke, bugs, rain, pitch darkness, wood gathering, tent erecting, camp set up or dismantling, doing dishes, or direct sunlight.
  • I can not camp in a spot that might harbor the occasional wild animal
  • I think fishing should only be from the safety of a dock with rails
  • A campfire should have a safety grate on top of it
  • I adhere to the old ways when you didn’t need a fishing or hunting license to take fish or game.
  • A hike in the woods can only be attempted with a GPS unit, bear spray and a satellite phone
  • I only Fly Fish with paid guides
  • If it’s not a Government campground, a KOA or run by the electric company and have hook up’s and a concrete pad—it’s not a “real” campground.
  • Does this statement apply to you, “When I was growing up, my family and I went camping all the time, at Grandmas cabin.”
  • If you are of the female persuasion ~ Do you feel it necessary to put makeup on and wash your hair every morning you are camping, even if it’s just a weekend trip?
  • I have found myself in need of search and rescue one or more times in my life.
  • I believe bringing two cans of Chili and a package of hotdogs is plenty of food for 3 days.
  • Temperatures dipping below 60 degrees, day or night, will result in a hypothermia induced coma.
  • If the road isn’t paved the entire way, from home doorstep to concrete camping pad, I consider the journey impassable and a risk to life itself.

**if you have answered true to one or more of the above, we will need to postpone our trip pending further outdoor psychological evaluation**


This of course, is just a start. I’m sure there are plenty more scenarios that could be placed on the disclosure questionnaire. I’m always open to suggestions, adjustments and amendments ~




{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

RobNo Gravatar November 23, 2009 at 11:32 am


This is hilarious! I need one of those disclosure forms for my brother for if it isn’t 70 degrees, sunny, no chance of rain, no bugs, and no animals then he isn’t interested in going. One recent trip, we camped at Big Cypress near the Everglades at a State Park Memorial Day weekend because it was the only park in the state that had an open campsite. The mosquitos WERE really bad however, if one used the proper amount of flippin’ DEET, then one wouldn’t have to worry about the mosquitos….alas, we had to leave the next day as the Deet was mixing with his cologne spray and making a foul smell…..
The next trip he went on, it got REALLY cold (like 40 degrees and our sleeping bags are only rated down to 42 degrees. I was even cold) and he had to go to Wal Mart to get an electric blanket. I would include a photo, but….well….you know.

Needless to say, I don’t take him too often. I never leave. I’ve camped in horrible thunderstorms, deluge, snow, blazing heat, WIND, bugs, you name it. Trust me, I wouldn’t be considered a “risk” to one of your trips….LOL!



RebeccaNo Gravatar November 23, 2009 at 12:36 pm

LOL Ok, sorry to say, but your Bro wouldn’t pass the testing phase of my questionaeire. The cool thing about your Bro, is AFTER the fact, once you get safely home after a trip, the laughter and memories make it all worth it. The majority of my fav camping stories are with ‘risks’ and the weird stuff that happened.

Glad to know you wouldn’t be a risk! We’ll have to test the scenario out one of these days.


trout whispererNo Gravatar November 23, 2009 at 1:38 pm

hey did the snail mail arrive??


WolfyNo Gravatar November 23, 2009 at 9:56 pm

I think I’m going to like this site, and your style, quite a bit! Glad I found you.



MelNo Gravatar November 23, 2009 at 10:06 pm

Well done, Rebecca, I have passed your test for now. Hope you don’t add more that would dis-qualify me later!


RebeccaNo Gravatar November 24, 2009 at 9:08 am

Yay, you passed! I’m so glad. Reading the comment below from Dan shows me I missed several more key questions, but I have a feeling you would still pass Mel. Someday I’ll have to travel to your side of the state and break bread in the dirt with ya~


DanNo Gravatar November 23, 2009 at 11:15 pm

I hate to say it but it’s all true “the list”. I know a couple who always go camping through the summer only. They have camping rules.
1. It must be a paved road all the way to the camp ground.
2. It must have a first class bathroom or use their motorhome’s toilet.
3. There must be other people close bye.
4. Paved paths are preferred.
5. Showers are a must daily. No dirt in camp.
6. A store close by is always a plus.



RebeccaNo Gravatar November 24, 2009 at 9:11 am

I can’t believe I forgot these key questions! You’re right, it’s not camping by the way I grew up, not even close. Basically, they should call it…outdoor hoteling it.
I’m off to add a few of your key points to my entry~


kirkNo Gravatar November 24, 2009 at 9:34 am

Ah the wisdom learned over many years…Perhaps to make the list complete (and binding) there should be a clause to protect you in the event that someone wasn’t truthful when they answered the questions initially.


ClifNo Gravatar November 24, 2009 at 4:55 pm

If a fly lands on your face are you prone to (choose all that apply):
– scream?
– swat hastily and flop in your seat?
– casually wave hand in front of face?
– let it crawl around, figuring it will leave when it’s good and ready?


RebeccaNo Gravatar November 24, 2009 at 11:04 pm

Kirk, thats a whole ‘nother handbook! I’m sure I’ll get to that in the near future.

Clif, LOL love it. I need to add it to the list as well. I for one fall into line 3. Casually wave it away without a lot of fuss. Unless it’s a skeeter or horse fly, then I aim to kill.


Kentucky JimNo Gravatar November 26, 2009 at 10:57 am

Funny stuff, Rebecca. A long time ago, I decided to take a college buddy on a relatively short backpacking trip. The trail was about six miles, the first mile of which ascended about 1500 feet. A little steep, but short, and all flat after that. He bought a new backpack, a new sleeping bag, a new rain parka, and last, but certainly not least, new boots. I told him to buy them long before the trip and wear them for at least two weeks. Alas, he did not.

When we were about half way up the ascent (about 1 1/2 miles into the trip) he began to puke. So, surprisingly, it wasn’t the hiking boots that broke it all apart, although I’m sure they would have, had we continued. We camped right there, and came out the next day. So much for all those trout in the lake and stream next to Mount Kennedy! Don’t recall where we went from there, but the trip was much shorter than originally intended.


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