The weekend before my first trip as Camp Chef, Backroads sent me out on a FAM. FAM is short for familiarization trip – something Backroads sends all leaders out on so that they have knowledge of the area and the lodging they will be working with. We needed to check out the camp sites to figure out what the good sites were, and we also used the time to visit the sites that the guests would be seeing so we could speak knowledgeably about the area.
My first trip started with a prep day on Monday during which we did our food buy, packed the van and prepped the food we could ahead of time. The next morning, bright and early, we met our guests at the base of Snow King Mountain in Jackson. I packed their luggage into the camping trailer and my teammate Claire and I got on the road toward our first campsite Colter Bay. When we arrived, we set up all the tents and the kitchen and started cooking dinner.
Over the next four days, we cooked, took down tents, drove to Grant Village, set the tents back up, cooked some more, and showered twice. It was exciting, stressful, and exhausting. Each day was around 14 hours of manual labor, as well as guest interaction. When I got back to Jackson on Saturday, all I wanted was a shower, food and a long nap.
What did I learn for my next trip? Well for one, I need to remember to eat. One of the reasons I was more tired is because I didn’t really eat a meal for the whole 5 days, with the exception of a hot dog one night and some snacks here and there. I would imagine that, combined with little real alone time added to my exhaustion at the end of the week.