1. It’s the ultimate escape from your real lives.
No matter how many date nights, weekend trips or lazy Saturdays in bed you plan to spend together, you never really escape from your day-to-day stressors: Bosses, commitments and projects are always just one invasive text message away. The only way to truly escape distraction is to completely unplug from it – to go somewhere where cell service isn’t an option. With all of your regular distractions silenced, you’ll have time to focus on what’s really important – each other.
2. You’ll be forced to work as a team.
There’s a reason most people don’t go camping alone – besides the intimidation of raging solitude – and that’s because camping is infinitely easier and more fulfilling with a team. You’ll work together to scout campsites, set up tents, put together meals and keep each other warm at night. When you’re working together to accomplish mutual goals, it brings you together in a way that going out for dinner just doesn’t.
3. You’ll see each other at your worst.
I’m not just talking about what you look like after a week without a shower (though I’m also talking about that). You’ll see each other at your grumpiest, your hungriest, your most exhausted and your most fed up. Any camping trip that lasts more than a weekend guarantees a few horrendous moods – the elements take their toll and you’ll see who your partner becomes when they’re at their wit’s end. And who they are at their wit’s end is who they really are. Take note.
4. It’s a great vacation for when you can’t afford a real vacation.
A week at an all-inclusive resort can put you out thousands of dollars on a good day. A week of camping puts you out the cost of food, transportation to your starting point and almost nothing more. Provided you have or can borrow the gear, you’re looking at one of the cheapest escapes possible. When you don’t have to worry about breaking the bank, you can enjoy yourselves more fully than ever before.
5. You’ll develop a new appreciation for each other.
One of the sexiest qualities your significant other can possess is resilience. And after a week in the woods, you can bet your ass it’ll be clear whether or not they have it. Skills you never knew each other had will emerge – you’ll see who’s patient in a crisis, who’s surprisingly resourceful and – most importantly – who keeps their sense of humor in stressful situations. The wilderness will bring out some of your realest qualities and they might just pleasantly surprise you.
6. Once you’ve had tent sex, your partner will never look unattractive again.
It’s not that tent sex is an awful idea, per sey, it’s just that the conditions aren’t always ideal. Not to mention that neither of you are at your cleanest. But hey – if you still want to get it on five days into a camping trip, safe to say your attraction to each other is healthy and thriving.
7. You’ll learn to enjoy the simple things.
Here’s the irony of camping vs. the real world: In the real world, you work half-heartedly for complicated things (think cell phones, big apartments, etc.) and you constantly forget to enjoy them. At home, happiness is an eternally unreachable ideal. In the woods, happiness is a warm fire and a grilled cheese sandwich. And you get to enjoy the bliss together. In the words of the ultimate explorer Chris McCandless, “Happiness is only real when shared.”
8. Once all the distractions of the ‘real world’ fall away, you’ll remember what you love most about each other.
It’s all too easy to get caught up in the pettiness of every day life – who forgot to pick up the wine for dinner and who’s been working late too often and which tiny inconveniences have been grading on each others nerves. When you’re out in the wild, those things all fade away. You’re devoid of the ins and outs of everyday life and you’re left with the only thing that matters – each other. It’s the perfect chance to talk, reconnect and spend valuable time with only each other – and it may just be the exact thing your relationships needs.