Monday, January 28, 2013

Camping: Clothed Camp vs. Naked Camp

Last weekend one of The Platypus team took his puggle camping as part of a "civic organization" event.  Camps operate a bit more year-round in these parts as we're South of the Mason-Dixon line.

Anyway, this particular event was definitely a clothed event. Despite the Southern venue, weather was chilly enough that one needed to wear long pants and jackets to be comfortable, not to mention that the "civic organization" in question frowns on open nakedness.  But the Platypuses have been naked camping at nudist resorts many times.  It got us thinking that it would make for some interesting reading if we compared the activity of clothed versus naked camping.  Here goes:

Packing - There's quite a bit of packing for any camp---naked or no---in the way of tents, sleeping bags, flashlights, matches, etc.  Removing the clothing component simply removes one stress.There's no question that one has to pack more for clothed camping.  There are changes of underwear, socks, more "formal clothes" (in the case of Scouts, uniforms, in other situations, perhaps at dinner, ceremonies), "casual clothes" and "clothes to get dirty in."  Having several changes becomes important because the soot and smoke smell collects on clothes quickly. 

Comfort - When the weather turns chilly we have to admit that clothes can feel good.  The warmth of a nice fire, with a good wool jacket on your back to keep off the cold, is a great combination.  During the day when it is warm at other times of the year, however, having the ability to strip off when you feel like it is one luxury you'll sorely miss when you switch back and forth between the nudist and textile camps.

Sleeping - Sleeping in clothes?  It's no fun.  Yet if the sleeping bag isn't a particularly warm one and the night cold, some clothes help...ditto for getting up to use the restroom in the night. One should use clothes that haven't been worn in---or sweated in---all day. Sweaty damp clothes only make you more cold. Problem is, if you've slept naked for years as we have, it's tough to get a good night's rest in the confines of any clothes.  You could try sleeping nude and putting on shorts and shirts when you need to get up, as we have on past warmer Scout trips. But that's cumbersome in the dark in a short tent while shivering as you get out of a warm bag.

Camaraderie - Say what you will about uniforms, there's nothing that equals the unifying effect of wearing nothing but what God gave you and a smile.  We've all got a naked body. Without doubt the best "Class A" outfit is your own birthday suit.

Cleanliness - We can all clean our body with a simple hop in the shower and feel much better. When you shower but put smoke filled clothes back on? It kinda defeats the whole point.

Convenience - Speaking of showers, it's nice to step out of the shower, towel off, put on shoes, and go back to camp.  That's what we've done on numerous nudist outings.  In clothed camp, that's not workable.

All things considered, we wish we could do more of the kind of camping that is: (1) mild seasonal camping apart from the afore-mentioned civic organization; (2) while in locations that are not necessarily nudist destinations, but; (3) remote enough to allow nudity without offending others.  In those situations, we could enjoy warm wool clothes and cocoa on chilly nights, but still strip off during the warmer parts of the day, at bed time, and on a trail less traveled.

Bare Platypus now offers products with Platypus artwork at the Bare Platypus Souvenir Shop .  You can get a tote bag or a coffee mug, a t-shirt, or all three!  Plus there's more to come.

These designs are one-of-a-kinds that you won't find elsewhere.  Tasteful enough that you can show or serve them to all guests, but unusual enough (and always bare) that they can help you get a conversation going.

You're invited to visit!