What we're about

Hi.

Thanks for checking out our group.

A quick note to any who message(d) me – Meetup has a weird bug where anyone can email (me) an organizer, but if you're not a member of this group or another group we're mutually both in, then Meetup won't allow me to respond. It might be an anti-spam feature. So if anyone messaged me in the past, I'm sorry for not replying. I honestly tried, but Meetup's messaging system is strict. If you don't want to join this group, but want to communicate with me, then try emailing me via wisejunkemail@gmail.com

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Do you love being outside in nature, going on adventures, discovering new places, making new friends, and creating new memories?

Do you spend more time on social media than being social with real humans?

Do your friends prefer staying indoors with the virtual world (phone, tv, movies, video games, internet, etc.) ?

Or are your outdoorsy friends always busy?

Is there a fun destination you want to go to, but haven't yet because nobody was available to join you?

Are you bored of doing the same things and going to the same places every weekend?



Well then, good news.

Our group has many cool, friendly, and like-minded individuals.

I plan a few events/trips throughout the year, and everyone is encouraged to host their own event.

If there is a hike you want to do, a place you want to visit, or a trip/activity you want to plan...then share your idea so others can join you.



More info - https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/239368546

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5oZBIfqGvNM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5UaHljP1ar4

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If anyone is brand new to camping, our trips in October are nearby and good for first-timers.

The trip in January might be okay for newbies too.

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For any dog-owners - as you know, many national & state parks prohibit dogs on hiking trails.

However, our Eastern Sierra trip in August, Mammoth trip in September (Labor Day wknd), and Santa Barbara trip in October, are dog friendly.

Mammoth & Eastern Sierra are beautiful. Many trails allow dogs to run around and even jump/swim in lakes.

So your dogs don't have to be sad or jealous when you go to national parks without them.

Bring them on a fun camping trip!

And let them chase squirrels!

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Upcoming trips



July @ Sequoia National Park –
https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/271615586

August @ Little Lakes Valley / Eastern Sierra –
https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/268711800

September (Labor Day) @ Mammoth / Eastern Sierra –
https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/265132113

September @ Bishop / Eastern Sierra –
https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/267983489

October @ Santa Barbara & Solvang –
https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/268468976

October @ Idyllwild & Mt. San Jacinto State Park –
https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/271340516

January @ SoCal –
https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/271934680

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Upcoming events (5)

Camping, Hiking, Swimming, Hot Springs, & Stargazing @ Little Lakes Valley

Little Lakes Valley Trailhead (Gem Lakes)

Hi everyone, What a wild year, right? Many people have isolated / quarantined themselves at home since late-March, so if a few people need a break and feel comfortable going outside/outdoors, we're planning a small group, weekend get-away to Eastern Sierra. If California doesn't shut down again due to COVID-19, then I'm gonna go for a relaxing and peaceful weekend. One popular and beautiful area in Eastern Sierra is Little Lakes Valley (Rock Creek Canyon). The mountains are calling, so let's go breathe some clean, crisp, fresh, and coronavirus-free air! - This is a non-holiday weekend, plus # of campsites is limited. And with the pandemic, we need to keep the group size small. Your safety & health are important. COVID 19 will probably remain a serious problem for the remainder of this year and possibly next year, 2021, so I decided it'll be best & easiest if this and future trips comprise mostly of people I've met, because they are familiar with me, and vice-versa, and we likely can trust each other. We might have room for a few new people, such as any who are extremely stressed, had their summer vacation plans canceled, been quarantined at home for months and really need a break & get-away, and/or have really wanted to visit Eastern Sierra for a long time. Again, I'm sorry we don't have room for everyone. If you're new, you probably should save your time and stop reading, and look for other groups doing bigger trips that might have space for you. But if you REALLY want to attend, then feel free to continue reading, and maybe we'll have room for a few first-timers. - The current situation is complicated due to COVID-19. Plus, I tend to be meticulous, so this section will be a general introduction to our group trip and sign-up process. Then, for a few who are new and serious about attending, a link to a Google Doc will be posted, which will be detailed & thorough, and take time to read & process...and should scare many people away. - If your phone strains your eyes, try viewing this on a larger screen (via computer / laptop) – https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/268711800 ____________________ General Intro: ____________________ This is a car camping / tent camping trip during August 14 - 16 weekend. For the past 2 - 3 years, every weekend trip has had returning members, all of whom are friendly & cordial. If anyone has never camped before, as long as you're open-minded & adaptable, then this trip can accommodate brand new campers. Several first-timers have attended our trips, so we're happy to help. However, due to coronavirus and social/physical distancing issues, we need to keep the size of this group trip manageable, so we're sorry if many who RSVP'ed cannot be accommodated. Most people should stay home until an effective vaccine/treatment for COVID-19 is available...but some people are also tired of staying indoors for months, and want to get out...so we'll try to accommodate as many as we safely can. Your understanding and cooperation is needed. ____________________ Drive time is around... 5 - 5.5 hours from LA - https://goo.gl/maps/VAdShnEVbJCJgS8MA 5.5 - 6 hours from OC - https://goo.gl/maps/NCFAu6Ewi4NanWFK8 ____________________ For this trip, a $35 contribution is appreciated (per person/adult). Any who attended a past trip or volunteered with me can contribute less, like $25. Kids are usually free. * - Many national & state parks prohibit dogs on hiking trails. Eastern Sierra is beautiful. Many trails allow dogs to run around and even jump/swim in lakes. So your dogs don't have to be sad or jealous when you go to national parks without them. Bring them on a fun camping trip to Little Lakes Valley! And let them chase squirrels! - Some other camping events on Meetup might prohibit kids. I admire parents who introduce their child(ren) to the outdoors and respect parents who encourage kids to take a break from tv, video games, phones, computers, etc.. So parents and kids are welcome to join. ____________________ Photos - https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/photos/all_photos/?photoAlbumId=30220878 https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/photos/28226224/465400413 https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/california/little-lakes-valley-to-gem-lakes/photos https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/california/rock-creek-to-long-lake-trail/photos https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/california/mosquito-flat-to-morgan-lakes/photos https://www.instagram.com/explore/locations/1432634043468101/little-lakes-valley https://www.instagram.com/explore/locations/543371957/little-lakes-valley-trail-head-eastern-sierras https://www.instagram.com/explore/locations/322903871/little-lakes-valley-trail https://www.google.com/search?&hl=en&tbm=isch&q=Little+Lakes+Valley - Videos: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=little+lakes+valley ____________________ If anyone is new to camping, new to Eastern Sierra, and/or a casual hiker –– then this would be a good event to consider...especially since Little Lakes trail is fairly easy, yet very scenic imo. - The start time posted is 5:00 pm, but this event is flexible. If anyone wants to drive up Friday morning to have more time for exploring the area (or hiking), that's fine. Or if anyone wants to start earlier, that's also possible. One group member might want to go on Thursday, and I might try going on Thurs too to look for extra campsites. If anyone can only start driving on Friday after work, that's fine. The campground is easy to drive to. Last year, some people arrived at night (10 pm - midnight). And we can help you set up your tent in the dark. btw, one person in LA wants to return Monday, but needs a ride. So if anyone driving wants to stay an extra day and can carpool, lmk. ____________________ Hiking is a popular group activity. However, if hiking doesn't interest you, feel free to do something else. Bring a book to read. If you're artistic, bring art supplies and draw/paint. If you have a novel, screenplay, biography, or poem to write, find a relaxing area and enjoy nature while you compose something. If you are spiritual or stressed from work / life, find a scenic & peaceful spot, and do some yoga, meditation, or introspection. Hiking is not required nor expected. You choose what you want to do. Some people might want to hike a lot or do another sweaty, physical activity. And some might want a casual, lazy, and relaxing weekend. It's up to you. - More info about hiking trails, swimming in lakes, hot springs, & other activities will be posted in a separate Google Doc. ____________________ The summer weather in SoCal might be hot, so the weather in Little Lakes Valley should be nicer...not hot during the day, and not cold at night. https://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?textField1=37.489380&textField2=-118.796516&e=1 ____________________ ––– Important for new, first-timers ––– - You are busy, and your time is limited... ...but this section is worth reading. A weekend camping trip is different from other events that meet at a restaurant, bar, movie theater, museum, bowling alley, etc... People are hundreds of miles away from home, and often far from a Walmart, Target, Walgreens, hospital, etc... ...so that's one of various reasons why our event descriptions tend to be long and detailed. Another reason is I'm sometimes picky. My preference is to have small-to-medium size groups. And oftentimes, we have more people who want to go than space is available. So the long, detailed descriptions are intended to provide helpful & relevant info, but also to weed/filter some out. Our desire is to have a group of friendly people who are prepared, equipped, self-sufficient, and serious about attending. Believe it or not, many people thank me during and after our trips end. Apparently, some have a positive and enjoyable experience. My response is it's the people who go that make the trip fun. It's a group collaboration and team effort. The majority of participants are social, friendly, open to making new friends, and willing to hike together, share food together, and help each other. If you don't believe me, check our photos from previous trips: LA group - https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/239368546 OC group - https://www.meetup.com/OC_Camping/events/239368574 - Another important thing to know: I'm not a professional organizer, expert camping trip planner, nor group hike leader. Some analogies are: - a bouncer at a club who screens & checks people before allowing them to enter - an admissions officer at a college/university who approves or rejects student applications - a Human Resources manager who decides who to hire - TSA security agent at an airport - In all these examples, most people don't become friends with them. Once you enter a nightclub, you dance with other people inside the club. You don't dance with the bouncer. Once you get into a college/university, you choose which classmates to be friends with. You don't hang out with the admissions officer. Once you start a new job, you choose which co-workers to be friends with. You normally don't spend time with anyone from HR. If there is a serious problem/conflict, then sure, maybe the bouncer/security guard or HR official steps in and intervenes, but for the most part, there is limited interaction. - Before a camping trip starts, I'm busy coordinating and communicating with various people, answering questions, facilitating carpooling arrangements, providing relevant info & details, so that everybody is prepared for the trip and ready to go. But once a trip starts (after you enter the club, get accepted into college, start a new job), then my role is diminished. Oftentimes, I just want to relax. I want some peace & quiet. So sometimes I hike by myself. I always try to meet everyone and chit chat a little, but sometimes I'm exhausted and stressed, that I need some alone time to unwind. Therefore, I don't lead group hikes or group activities. Of course, I'll share recommendations and provide tips/advice on various hikes/activities, but sometimes I'm stressed & tired and do my own thing. Our group usually has smart and experienced people, so we rarely ever have a problem with group activities, and many people can find others to hike with or hang out with. Last year, at least 3 trips, I stayed up until 1 or 2 am, waiting for people to arrive. One trip, someone got a flat tire, and arrived the next morning, and while some wanted me to join them for hiking, I stayed at the campsite and waited for the person with the fixed tire to arrive. Earlier this year, someone who needed a tent, arrived around 2:40 am, and I stayed up, (no problem, I'm happy to help...but I was so tired in the morning, I couldn't go hiking with the rest of the group). I'm not complaining...I'm merely explaining, that once a trip starts, I tend to be stressed and tired, so I'm sometimes unavailable...but other group members step up, and they are very friendly, helpful, and proficient at bringing people together for hiking, meals, bonfire, etc. So if you're brand new to our trips, I feel it's important to disclose this...and you should know this before deciding to join our trip or not. What makes our group trips awesome...is the group members...not me. You will enjoy meeting them...not me. Other people/groups plan trips costing $60 - $100+, so their trips are probably professionally organized, and way better than our trip. If you need someone to hold your hand, babysit you, or coddle you...then this trip is not for you. Other groups plan bigger & better trips that you might enjoy more. But if you are friendly, open-minded, flexible, and willing to meet some nice and fun people, then our group trips attract several quality individuals, so you have an opportunity to have an exciting weekend in a beautiful environment. - Here's a link to the Google Doc that will have more info/details, and should scare most new people away: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1MdvSrWateyycD8fV0xLhvitJRCKIUTSxQHM5T60yf30 ____________________ I'm not a mind-reader, so if anyone is seriously interested in attending, please contact me directly (message me via Meetup) with a quick message to inquire about the trip. I probably will give an ambiguous/vague answer that space is limited, that we'll give priority to those who I've met before, but maybe we'll have room for a few new people. If using the Meetup app on your phone, look under Attendees, and tap on wise|man. If using a computer / laptop, you can also look under Attendees for my profile/account, or you can go directly to https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/members/69743242 or https://www.meetup.com/OC_Camping/members/69743242 and click on "message" - Again, I apologize it's easy for many to "RSVP" and sign up for this event, but we honestly have limited space, and with this pandemic, we need to keep the size small for safety & health reasons. Maybe in 2021 or 2022, things will return to normal, and more attendees can join. In the meanwhile, for the very few who REALLY want to attend, maybe we'll have room, so if we can squeeze you in, then please answer the following: (1) Do you understand coronavirus / COVID-19 is contagious and highly transmissible? Do you understand many health/medical experts believe those who are obese, older/elderly, are immunocompromised, and/or have comorbidities are more susceptible to serious health issues & complications, such as death? If you have bad health, a weak immune system, or a chronic disease such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, hypertension, lung or asthma problems, atherosclerosis, or any other health issue, please consult with your doctor or healthcare provider. I don't want to discriminate anyone for their age or health, but staying at home might be safer for you. Thank you. (2) Are you an essential worker? Do you live with anyone who is? What have you been doing for the past few weeks/months? Other than going out for food or exercising around your neighborhood, have you gone anywhere else? If yes, where and when/how often? (3) In other words, have you mostly stayed at home (self-quarantine and isolation), or have you been going out? Whenever you left your home, did you wear a mask? Have you been exposed to large groups/crowds? (4) Have you been exposed to anyone who is sick or tested positive for COVID-19? For 2-3 weeks prior to this trip, can you abstain from going to any bar, restaurant, gym, protest, and any other indoor gathering that is not work-related nor essential (church or religious gathering, party, etc.) ? Basically, can you please avoid getting sick / infected? (5) Do you understand we cannot promise nor guarantee a coronavirus-free environment? We don't know nor can control if other attendees, other campers at the campground, previous person who used the restroom before you, someone you walk by on a hiking trail, etc. is infected/contagious. (6) If our small group trip has room for you, do you plan on bringing and wearing a mask? Would you wear a mask while at the campground? (7) Can you bring your own cleaning & disinfectant supplies (e.g. alcohol-based, bleach, or Lysol spray or wipes, paper towels, wet naps/baby wipes, hand sanitizer, soap, etc.) ? (8) If you feel sick or experience any symptom (e.g. fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion, runny nose, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, etc.) or any other unusual irregularity or symptom, do you agree to voluntarily not attend this trip, or if after the trip begins, you start to feel sick after arriving, then you will leave immediately? In other words, will you do your part to make sure nobody is exposed or infected by you? (9) Did you read this Google Doc? https://docs.google.com/document/d/1MdvSrWateyycD8fV0xLhvitJRCKIUTSxQHM5T60yf30 (10) Do you want to drive or ride with someone else? If you can drive others, how many passengers can you accommodate? Please keep in mind space for backpacks, camping gear (tents, sleeping bags, etc.), food/cooler, clothes, etc. It's totally fine if you want to drive alone/solo. My sense is most/all will want to drive separately, but sometimes people don't have a car or some drivers don't want to go alone. I'm merely asking in case anyone is comfortable with carpooling. If you're a driver, you'll have 100% decision-making ability in who rides with you. In other words, you can decide/choose if someone else goes with you or not. (11) What time do you want to leave SoCal? What city/area are you leaving from? (12) Have you camped before? Do you have your own camping gear (e.g. tent, sleeping bag, mat/pad/cot, etc.) ? How small/big is your tent? (13) Do you understand you are responsible for bringing / buying your own food? (14) Have you visited Eastern Sierra before? Did you read the info in the Google Doc about some campsites having limited space for tents and parking? If you want to drive, are you okay with parking in an overflow parking lot or elsewhere? (15) Do you understand space is limited and not all who RSVP'ed can attend? Why would you be a good addition to our group trip? (16) Do you have a preference on what you want to do/see? (17) What is your personality like? Can you get along with others (new people)? Are you friendly with diverse individuals of different demographics (e.g. age, ethnicity, background, lifestyle, politics, religion, socioeconomic status, etc.)? (18) Do you understand we can't control the weather? (19) Can you let me know if you want to bring a pet/dog, child/minor, or guest/friend? (20) Do you understand Wiseman is not your tour guide, babysitter, waiter, maid, servant, or employee? (21) Do you understand and accept if you do/say anything inappropriate, disrespectful, offensive, illegal, egregious, and/or annoying, you will be asked to leave, and you will comply? (22) Do you understand and accept you are responsible for your safety, yourself, all your belongings/property, and anyone (pet/dog, child, friend/guest, etc.) you bring, and you will not hold anyone else (i.e. Wiseman) liable nor responsible for anything that happens to you, your body/health, your possessions, and/or anyone you bring, and do you agree and accept section 6 of Meetup's TOS? - http://www.meetup.com/terms (23) If you're female, can you let me know if any guy harasses you or makes you feel unsafe/uncomfortable? (24) If you're male and we've never met, can you send a selfie/photo of yourself holding a piece of paper with my name (Wiseman), your full name, and the date to [masked] or text it to[masked] ? (25) If you're male and we've never met, when we meet at the campground, can you show me your Driver's License ? - FAQ Q: Why don’t you ask women to send a photo? A: Because I’m sexist. After 40+ camping trips of encountering hundreds of people, I don’t remember any woman harassing a man, but a few men have bothered women, so now I take extra precaution with just guys. - Q: Why do you want to see a guy's Driver's License? A: Similar to a bartender/server/bouncer checking ID when someone enters a bar or buys alcohol; or some store cashiers check ID when a customer uses a credit card, I want to confirm names. This is my way of deterring bad guys from using fake names. Sorry, but believe it or not, some creepy guys are out there...so this should discourage some weird dudes from attending. Thank you for understanding and cooperating. We want this to be a safe trip for all women and men. - If anybody is new to camping and doesn’t have some camping gear/equipment, or wants help coordinating carpooling, just lmk. After messaging me your answers, and if I feel okay about you attending, then a $35 contribution will be collected via Paypal, Venmo, or Zelle. Those who attended a past trip or volunteered with me can contribute less $, like $25. More info on the campsite & final details will be sent to those who confirmed & donated. Money collected will help with Meetup fees and group supplies/expenses incurred for this trip. Leftover money will be used for planning future trips and also to buy some items to help a few homeless individuals. ____________________ Examples of recommended items to bring: - Face mask / covering Disinfectant spray/wipes, cleaning supplies, paper towels, toilet paper, etc. Bug Spray / Insect Repellent / Head or Face Net Sleeping bag (or bed sheet & blanket) Pillow Sleeping pad / mat or air mattress Tent Tarp, stakes, guy lines, and rain fly for tent Appropriate clothes, socks, & shoes Toothbrush, toothpaste, & other hygiene items / toiletries Lip balm / chapstick Hand sanitizer or baby wipes / wet naps Sunglasses, sunscreen, and a hat Earplugs Flashlight / Headlamp / Lantern Portable chair Cell phone charger cable (car adapter) or portable charger Water (or water filter) Water bottles or hydration pack Food (and cookware) Music or games First aid kit & whistle Towel, soap, shampoo, & flip flops / water sandals (if showering) Swimwear, flip flops, & towel (if swimming in lake or going to hot springs) Misc items (e.g. bowl, cooking utensils, cup, eating utensils, foil, napkins, paper towels, plate, trash bags, ziploc bags, etc.) https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/family-camping-checklist.html ____________________ * Some other camping events in other Meetup groups might prohibit kids. I admire parents who introduce their child(ren) to the outdoors and respect parents who encourage kids to take a break from tv, video games, phones, computers, social media, internet, etc. So parents and kids are welcome to join. I usually ask for a payment per adult, so kids who attend are free. As long as there’s space/room at the campsite, and your child genuinely wants to attend, and it’s not a large # of kids (boys/girls scouts, youth group, your child's sports teammates, etc.). Some people don’t want kids to attend, but I try to be cool, understanding, and supportive of parents. However, we want to avoid a situation where a kid is dragged to camping trip and doesn’t want to be there (foul/negative mood, tantrum, drama, crying, etc.)...so thank you for your cooperation. ____________________ .....................................................................................................................................................

Safer-at-home online meetup – Play a free & fun group game

Hi everyone, For anyone who is bored at home, running out of things to do, and doesn't want to go out during this nightmare pandemic, then this is something to help us get our mind off the depressing news related to coronavirus, and should make us laugh. Last month, 9 - 10 of us played a silly game online and others and I lol'ed multiple times. Learn from me and don't attempt to draw Michael Jackson. haha ____________________ It's web based and a simple adaptation of Pictionary, where everyone takes turns drawing something, and others guess wtf it is. I know...I know...it sounds childish...but it can be surprisingly fun...partly because I and some others can't draw well. So if anything, we can laugh at each other for our poor drawings haha. If any of you went to art school or are artistic, here's a chance to show off your skills. If anyone is a graphic designer, then you can shame us with your superior drawing. So if a few people aren't going out for the weekend and catching COVID, then maybe a few of us can have a nice distraction for an hour or so...and you can all judge and laugh at me for my stick figure drawings. ____________________ My expectations are really low, so maybe nobody or a few people will be interested in this. We only need 4 people minimum imo. I'll post this in five groups and maybe at least one person from each group will be interested: https://www.meetup.com/SoCalVolunteers https://www.meetup.com/LAVolunteer https://www.meetup.com/LosAngelesVolunteers https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping https://www.meetup.com/OC_Camping ____________________ I honestly have no idea if any others will want to play...maybe zero. Anyhow, I'll try for Friday night at around 8:00 pm. If we don't have enough people, then I'll try again for Saturday night or Sunday night at 8 pm. If anyone wants to play, you should have a computer or laptop/notebook, preferably with a mouse...unless you can draw well with your finger and touchpad / touchscreen. Maybe a tablet will work. Using a phone to draw might be challenging. So a computer, laptop/notebook (with mouse), or maybe a tablet, are recommended. Okay...so around 5 minutes prior to 8 pm, feel free to message me directly and lmk if you're interested in playing, and if we get a minimum of 4 people, then I'll send a website link for us to all join and play. It's free to play...and there's no need to download anything. We just go to the game's website, and it's free & easy to play. ____________________ This is not a Zoom meeting, so no web camera needed. So no need to clean up your room/background, shower, dress up, wear pants, etc. You can play (and hide) without worrying. ;) To reiterate, if interested, please message me directly. It'll be easier for me to stay on my message inbox than in separate events, checking comments...and multi-tasking among various tabs. If we have enough people, my guess is we can play for 30 minutes to an hour...and people can end/leave whenever. To message me, look under Attendees for my profile/account, and click on " wise|man" or go directly to https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/members/69743242 and click on "message" ...and I'll send you the website link for the game. I surely can use the distraction and get my mind off the news. Thanks everyone. Stay safe and healthy. Cheers. ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Camping, Hiking, Swimming, & Hot Springs @ Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes Welcome Center

Hi. What a wild year, right? Many people have isolated / quarantined themselves at home since late-March, so if a few people need a break and feel comfortable going outside/outdoors, we're planning a small group, weekend get-away to Mammoth Lakes for Labor Day weekend. If California doesn't shut down again due to COVID-19, then I'm gonna go for a relaxing and peaceful weekend. The mountains are calling, so let's go breathe some clean, crisp, fresh, and coronavirus-free air! ____________________ This is a holiday weekend, plus # of campsites is limited. And with the pandemic, we need to keep the group size small. Your safety & health are important. COVID 19 will probably remain a serious problem for the remainder of this year and possibly next year, 2021, so I decided it'll be best & easiest if this and future trips comprise mostly of people I've met, because they are familiar with me, and vice-versa, and we likely can trust each other. We might have room for a few new people, such as any who are extremely stressed, had their summer vacation plans canceled, been quarantined at home for months and really need a break & get-away, and/or have really wanted to visit Mammoth for a long time. Again, I'm sorry we don't have room for everyone. If you're new, you probably should save your time and stop reading, and look for other groups doing bigger trips that might have space for you. But if you REALLY want to attend, then feel free to continue reading, and maybe we'll have room for a few first-timers. - The current situation is complicated due to COVID-19. Plus, I tend to be meticulous, so this section will be a general introduction to our group trip and sign-up process. Then, for a few who are new and serious about attending, a link to a Google Doc will be posted, which will be detailed & thorough, and take time to read & process...and should scare many people away. - If your phone strains your eyes, try viewing this on a larger screen (via computer / laptop) – https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/265132113 ____________________ General Intro: ____________________ This is a car camping / tent camping trip during Labor Day weekend. For the past 2 - 3 years, every weekend trip has had returning members, all of whom are friendly & cordial. If anyone has never camped before, as long as you're open-minded & adaptable, then this trip can accommodate brand new campers. Several first-timers have attended our trips, so we're happy to help. However, due to coronavirus and social/physical distancing issues, we need to keep the size of this group trip manageable, so we're sorry if many who RSVP'ed cannot be accommodated. Most people should stay home until an effective vaccine/treatment for COVID-19 is available...but some people are also tired of staying indoors for months, and want to get out...so we'll try to accommodate as many as we safely can. Your understanding and cooperation is needed. ____________________ Drive time is around: 5 - 6 hours from LA - https://goo.gl/maps/jsc8KwB9nzk 5.5 - 6.5 hours from OC - https://goo.gl/maps/m97M5hAL1ct ____________________ For this trip, a $50 contribution is appreciated (per person/adult). Any who attended a past trip or volunteered with me can contribute less, like $40. Kids are usually free. * - Many national & state parks prohibit dogs on hiking trails. Eastern Sierra is beautiful. Many trails allow dogs to run around and even jump/swim in lakes. So your dogs don't have to be sad or jealous when you go to national parks without them. Bring them on a fun camping trip to Mammoth! And let them chase squirrels! - Some other camping events on Meetup might prohibit kids. I admire parents who introduce their child(ren) to the outdoors and respect parents who encourage kids to take a break from tv, video games, phones, computers, etc.. So parents and kids are welcome to join. ____________________ Photos - https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/photos/all_photos/?photoAlbumId=30215942 https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/photos/all_photos/?photoAlbumId=30220878 https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/photos/all_photos/?photoAlbumId=29225461 https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/mammoth https://www.instagram.com/visitmammoth - Videos: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJtFA2pM_lQ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FenzA-loHM ____________________ The start time posted is 5:00 pm, but this event is flexible. Arrive on Friday or Saturday. Your choice. If anyone can only start driving on Friday after work, that's fine. The campground is easy to drive to. Last year, some people arrived at night (11 pm - 2 am). We can help you set up your tent in the dark. ____________________ Hiking is a popular group activity. However, if hiking doesn't interest you, feel free to do something else. Bring a book to read. If you're artistic, bring art supplies and draw/paint. If you have a novel, screenplay, biography, or poem to write, find a relaxing area and enjoy nature while you compose something. If you are spiritual or stressed from work / life, find a scenic & peaceful spot, and do some yoga, meditation, or introspection. Hiking is not required nor expected. You choose what you want to do. Some people might want to hike a lot or do another sweaty, physical activity. And some might want a casual, lazy, and relaxing weekend. It's up to you. - More info about hiking trails, swimming in lakes, hot springs, kayaking, fishing, biking, & other activities will be posted in a separate Google Doc. ____________________ ––– Important for new, first-timers ––– - You are busy, and your time is limited... ...but this section is worth reading. A weekend camping trip is different from other events that meet at a restaurant, bar, movie theater, museum, bowling alley, etc... People are hundreds of miles away from home, and often far from a Walmart, Target, Walgreens, hospital, etc... ...so that's one of various reasons why our event descriptions tend to be long and detailed. Another reason is I'm sometimes picky. My preference is to have small-to-medium size groups. And oftentimes, we have more people who want to go than space is available. So the long, detailed descriptions are intended to provide helpful & relevant info, but also to weed/filter some out. Our desire is to have a group of friendly people who are prepared, equipped, self-sufficient, and serious about attending. Believe it or not, many people thank me during and after our trips end. Apparently, some have a positive and enjoyable experience. My response is it's the people who go that make the trip fun. It's a group collaboration and team effort. The majority of participants are social, friendly, open to making new friends, and willing to hike together, share food together, and help each other. If you don't believe me, check our photos from previous trips: LA group - https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/239368546 OC group - https://www.meetup.com/OC_Camping/events/239368574 - Another important thing to know: I'm not a professional organizer, expert camping trip planner, nor group hike leader. Some analogies are: - a bouncer at a club who screens & checks people before allowing them to enter - an admissions officer at a college/university who approves or rejects student applications - a Human Resources manager who decides who to hire - TSA security agent at an airport - In all these examples, most people don't become friends with them. Once you enter a nightclub, you dance with other people inside the club. You don't dance with the bouncer. Once you get into a college/university, you choose which classmates to be friends with. You don't hang out with the admissions officer. Once you start a new job, you choose which co-workers to be friends with. You normally don't spend time with anyone from HR. If there is a serious problem/conflict, then sure, maybe the bouncer/security guard or HR official steps in and intervenes, but for the most part, there is limited interaction. - Before a camping trip starts, I'm busy coordinating and communicating with various people, answering questions, facilitating carpooling arrangements, providing relevant info & details, so that everybody is prepared for the trip and ready to go. But once a trip starts (after you enter the club, get accepted into college, start a new job), then my role is diminished. Oftentimes, I just want to relax. I want some peace & quiet. So sometimes I hike by myself. I always try to meet everyone and chit chat a little, but sometimes I'm exhausted and stressed, that I need some alone time to unwind. Therefore, I don't lead group hikes or group activities. Of course, I'll share recommendations and provide tips/advice on various hikes/activities, but sometimes I'm stressed & tired and do my own thing. Our group usually has smart and experienced people, so we rarely ever have a problem with group activities, and many people can find others to hike with or hang out with. Last year, at least 3 trips, I stayed up until 1 or 2 am, waiting for people to arrive. One trip, someone got a flat tire, and arrived the next morning, and while some wanted me to join them for hiking, I stayed at the campsite and waited for the person with the fixed tire to arrive. Earlier this year, someone who needed a tent, arrived around 2:40 am, and I stayed up, (no problem, I'm happy to help...but I was so tired in the morning, I couldn't go hiking with the rest of the group). I'm not complaining...I'm merely explaining, that once a trip starts, I tend to be stressed and tired, so I'm sometimes unavailable...but other group members step up, and they are very friendly, helpful, and proficient at bringing people together for hiking, meals, bonfire, etc. So if you're brand new to our trips, I feel it's important to disclose this...and you should know this before deciding to join our trip or not. What makes our group trips awesome...is the group members...not me. You will enjoy meeting them...not me. Other people/groups plan trips costing $60 - $100+, so their trips are probably professionally organized, and way better than our trip. If you need someone to hold your hand, babysit you, or coddle you...then this trip is not for you. Other groups plan bigger & better trips that you might enjoy more. But if you are friendly, open-minded, flexible, and willing to meet some nice and fun people, then our group trips attract several quality individuals, so you have an opportunity to have an exciting weekend in a beautiful environment. - Here's a link to the Google Doc that will have more info/details, and should scare most new people away: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1p0soc1nt4LN-WKwvmHCGIrMFv1Nj1GPK1K6cDqcbqiI ____________________ I'm not a mind-reader, so if anyone is seriously interested in attending, please contact me directly (message me via Meetup) with a quick message to inquire about the trip. I probably will give an ambiguous/vague answer that space is limited, that we'll give priority to those who I've met before, but maybe we'll have room for a few new people. If using the Meetup app on your phone, look under Attendees, and tap on wise|man. If using a computer / laptop, you can also look under Attendees for my profile/account, or you can go directly to https://www.meetup.com/OC_Camping/members/69743242 or https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/members/69743242 and click on "message" - Again, I apologize it's easy for many to "RSVP" and sign up for this event, but we honestly have limited space, and with this pandemic, we need to keep the size small for safety & health reasons. Maybe in 2021 or 2022, things will return to normal, and more attendees can join. In the meanwhile, for the very few who REALLY want to attend, maybe we'll have room, so if we can squeeze you in, then please answer the following: (1) Do you understand coronavirus / COVID-19 is contagious and highly transmissible? Do you understand many health/medical experts believe those who are obese, older/elderly, are immunocompromised, and/or have comorbidities are more susceptible to serious health issues & complications, such as death? If you have bad health, a weak immune system, or a chronic disease such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, hypertension, lung or asthma problems, atherosclerosis, or any other health issue, please consult with your doctor or healthcare provider. I don't want to discriminate anyone for their age or health, but staying at home might be safer for you. Thank you. (2) Are you an essential worker? Do you live with anyone who is? What have you been doing for the past few weeks/months? Other than going out for food or exercising around your neighborhood, have you gone anywhere else? If yes, where and when/how often? (3) In other words, have you mostly stayed at home (self-quarantine and isolation), or have you been going out? Whenever you left your home, did you wear a mask? Have you been exposed to large groups/crowds? (4) Have you been exposed to anyone who is sick or tested positive for COVID-19? For 2-3 weeks prior to this trip, can you abstain from going to any bar, restaurant, gym, protest, and any other indoor gathering that is not work-related nor essential (church or religious gathering, party, etc.) ? Basically, can you please avoid getting sick / infected? (5) Do you understand we cannot promise nor guarantee a coronavirus-free environment? We don't know nor can control if other attendees, other campers at the campground, previous person who used the restroom before you, someone you walk by on a hiking trail, etc. is infected/contagious. (6) If our small group trip has room for you, do you plan on bringing and wearing a mask? Would you wear a mask while at the campground? (7) Can you bring your own cleaning & disinfectant supplies (e.g. alcohol-based, bleach, or Lysol spray or wipes, paper towels, wet naps/baby wipes, hand sanitizer, soap, etc.) ? (8) If you feel sick or experience any symptom (e.g. fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion, runny nose, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, etc.) or any other unusual irregularity or symptom, do you agree to voluntarily not attend this trip, or if after the trip begins, you start to feel sick after arriving, then you will leave immediately? In other words, will you do your part to make sure nobody is exposed or infected by you? (9) Did you read this Google Doc? https://docs.google.com/document/d/1p0soc1nt4LN-WKwvmHCGIrMFv1Nj1GPK1K6cDqcbqiI (10) Do you want to drive or ride with someone else? If you can drive others, how many passengers can you accommodate? Please keep in mind space for backpacks, camping gear (tents, sleeping bags, etc.), food/cooler, clothes, etc. It's totally fine if you want to drive alone/solo. My sense is most/all will want to drive separately, but sometimes people don't have a car or some drivers don't want to go alone. I'm merely asking in case anyone is comfortable with carpooling. If you're a driver, you'll have 100% decision-making ability in who rides with you. In other words, you can decide/choose if someone else goes with you or not. (11) What day (Fri or Sat) & time do you want to leave SoCal? What city/area are you leaving from? (12) Have you camped before? Do you have your own camping gear (e.g. tent, sleeping bag, mat/pad/cot, etc.) ? How small/big is your tent? (13) Do you understand you are responsible for bringing / buying your own food? (14) Have you visited Mammoth before? Did you read the info in the Google Doc about some campsites having limited space for tents and parking? If you want to drive, are you okay with parking in an overflow parking lot or elsewhere? (15) Do you understand space is limited and not all who RSVP'ed can attend? Why would you be a good addition to our group trip? (16) Do you have a preference on what you want to do/see? (17) What is your personality like? Can you get along with others (new people)? Are you friendly with diverse individuals of different demographics (e.g. age, ethnicity, background, lifestyle, politics, religion, socioeconomic status, etc.)? (18) Do you understand we can't control the weather? (19) Can you let me know if you want to bring a pet/dog, child/minor, or guest/friend? (20) Do you understand Wiseman is not your tour guide, babysitter, waiter, maid, servant, or employee? (21) Do you understand and accept if you do/say anything inappropriate, disrespectful, offensive, illegal, egregious, and/or annoying, you will be asked to leave, and you will comply? (22) Do you understand and accept you are responsible for your safety, yourself, all your belongings/property, and anyone (pet/dog, child, friend/guest, etc.) you bring, and you will not hold anyone else (i.e. Wiseman) liable nor responsible for anything that happens to you, your body/health, your possessions, and/or anyone you bring, and do you agree and accept section 6 of Meetup's TOS? - http://www.meetup.com/terms (23) If you're female, can you let me know if any guy harasses you or makes you feel unsafe/uncomfortable? (24) If you're male and we've never met, can you send a selfie/photo of yourself holding a piece of paper with my name (Wiseman), your full name, and the date to [masked] or text it to[masked] ? (25) If you're male and we've never met, when we meet at the campground, can you show me your Driver's License ? - FAQ Q: Why don’t you ask women to send a photo? A: Because I’m sexist. After 40+ camping trips of encountering hundreds of people, I don’t remember any woman harassing a man, but a few men have bothered women, so now I take extra precaution with just guys. - Q: Why do you want to see a guy's Driver's License? A: Similar to a bartender/server/bouncer checking ID when someone enters a bar or buys alcohol; or some store cashiers check ID when a customer uses a credit card, I want to confirm names. This is my way of deterring bad guys from using fake names. Sorry, but believe it or not, some creepy guys are out there...so this should discourage some weird dudes from attending. Thank you for understanding and cooperating. We want this to be a safe trip for all women and men. - If anybody is new to camping and doesn’t have some camping gear/equipment, or wants help coordinating carpooling, just lmk. After messaging me your answers, and if I feel okay about you attending, then a $50 contribution will be collected via Paypal, Venmo, or Zelle. Those who attended a past trip or volunteered with me can contribute less $, like $40. More info on the campsite & final details will be sent to those who confirmed & donated. Money collected will help with Meetup fees and group supplies/expenses incurred for this trip. Leftover money will be used for planning future trips and also to buy some items to help a few homeless individuals. ____________________ Examples of recommended items to bring: - Face mask / covering Disinfectant spray/wipes, cleaning supplies, paper towels, toilet paper, etc. Bug Spray / Insect Repellent / Head or Face Net Sleeping bag (or bed sheet & blanket) Pillow Sleeping pad / mat or air mattress Tent Tarp, stakes, guy lines, and rain fly for tent Appropriate clothes, socks, & shoes Toothbrush, toothpaste, & other hygiene items / toiletries Lip balm / chapstick Hand sanitizer or baby wipes / wet naps Sunglasses, sunscreen, and a hat Earplugs Flashlight / Headlamp / Lantern Portable chair Cell phone charger cable (car adapter) or portable charger Water (or water filter) Water bottles or hydration pack Food (and cookware) Music or games First aid kit & whistle Towel, soap, shampoo, & flip flops / water sandals (if showering) Swimwear, flip flops, & towel (if swimming in lake or going to hot springs) Misc items (e.g. bowl, cooking utensils, cup, eating utensils, foil, napkins, paper towels, plate, trash bags, ziploc bags, etc.) https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/family-camping-checklist.html ____________________ * Some other camping events in other Meetup groups might prohibit kids. I admire parents who introduce their child(ren) to the outdoors and respect parents who encourage kids to take a break from tv, video games, phones, computers, social media, internet, etc. So parents and kids are welcome to join. I usually ask for a payment per adult, so kids who attend are free. As long as there’s space/room at the campsite, and your child genuinely wants to attend, and it’s not a large # of kids (boys/girls scouts, youth group, your child's sports teammates, etc.). Some people don’t want kids to attend, but I try to be cool, understanding, and supportive of parents. However, we want to avoid a situation where a kid is dragged to camping trip and doesn’t want to be there (foul/negative mood, tantrum, drama, crying, etc.)...so thank you for your cooperation. ____________________ Photo Source/Credit: AllTrips, Backcountrycow, Josh Wray, Mammoth Lakes Tourism, Mammount Mountain Ski Area, Monica Prelle, Peter B Kunasz, and Visit California ...........................................................................................................................................

Camping, Hiking, & Tree Hugging @ Sequoia

Lodgepole Visitor Center

Hi, We had a trip to Sequoia, July 31 - Aug 2, but due to some unexpected situations & circumstances, I wasn't able to do/see much during the weekend. I thought about waiting until next year, but YOLO, and will try to go back to do/see the things I wanted to do/see prior (Crescent Meadow, Lakes trail, Moro Rock, Giant Forest, bear watching, etc.). This will NOT be a typical group trip. I mostly will be doing my own thing, so nobody should expect to hang out with me or hike with me. If 1 - 3 other people are interested in going, and can be self-sufficient & independent, and don't mind that I (Wiseman) will be absent and unavailable, then maybe a few people can join. If so, maybe a few of you can hang out together without me. I love the trees in Sequoia, so let's go breathe some clean, crisp, fresh, and coronavirus-free air! The following below is old (copy & paste from previous trip)...I'll update this when I have more time. There's some important stuff I need to clarify. - - The current situation is complicated due to COVID-19. Plus, I tend to be meticulous, so this section will be a general introduction to our group trip and sign-up process. Then, for a few who are new and serious about attending, a link to a Google Doc will be posted, which will be detailed & thorough, and take time to read & process...and should scare many people away. - If your phone strains your eyes, try viewing this on a larger screen (via computer / laptop) – https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/272562419 ____________________ General Intro: ____________________ This is a car camping / tent camping trip during Sept 18 - 20 weekend. (If anyone wants to stay until Monday, lmk.). For the past 2 - 3 years, every weekend trip has had returning members, all of whom are friendly & cordial. If anyone has never camped before, as long as you're open-minded & adaptable, then this trip can accommodate brand new campers. Several first-timers have attended our trips, so we're happy to help. However, due to coronavirus and social/physical distancing issues, we need to keep the size of this group trip manageable, so we're sorry if many who RSVP'ed cannot be accommodated. Most people should stay home until an effective vaccine/treatment for COVID-19 is available...but some people are also tired of staying indoors for months, and want to get out...so we'll try to accommodate as many as we safely can. Your understanding and cooperation is needed. ____________________ Drive time is around: 4.5 - 5 hours from LA - https://goo.gl/maps/FPkgghoD6kE2 5 - 5.5 hours from OC - https://goo.gl/maps/YqVHxb7pZhzjtXoR7 ____________________ For this trip, a $25 contribution is appreciated (per person/adult). Any who attended a past trip or volunteered with me can contribute less, like $20. Kids are usually free. * - Sorry dog owners, many national parks prohibit dogs on hiking trails. - Some other camping events on Meetup might prohibit kids. I admire parents who introduce their child(ren) to the outdoors and respect parents who encourage kids to take a break from tv, video games, phones, computers, etc.. So parents and kids are welcome to join. ____________________ Photos - https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/photos/all_photos/?photoAlbumId=31002175 https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/photos/all_photos/?photoAlbumId=29013121 https://www.meetup.com/SoCalVolunteers/photos/all_photos/?photoAlbumId=27065536 https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/sequoianationalpark https://www.flickr.com/groups/sequoianationalpark/pool ____________________ Maps: https://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/upload/SEKImap3_2015.pdf https://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/upload/SEKImap1_2015.pdf https://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/upload/SEKImap2.pdf http://www.sierradayhikes.com/regions/sequoia_map.html - Weather: https://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?CityName=Sequoia+National+Park&state=CA&site=HNX&textField1=36.6095967&textField2=-118.7542518&e=0#.XqwHOpl7kRQ https://www.visitsequoia.com/explore/trip-planner/weather https://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/weather.htm ____________________ Hiking is a popular group activity. However, if hiking doesn't interest you, feel free to do something else. Bring a book to read. If you're artistic, bring art supplies and draw/paint. If you have a novel, screenplay, biography, or poem to write, find a relaxing area and enjoy nature while you compose something. If you are spiritual or stressed from work / life, find a scenic & peaceful spot, and do some yoga, meditation, or introspection. Hiking is not required nor expected. You choose what you want to do. Some people might want to hike a lot or do another sweaty, physical activity. And some might want a casual, lazy, and relaxing weekend. It's up to you. - Sequoia has easy walks & moderate hikes to choose from: https://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/dayhikes.htm https://www.hikespeak.com/sierras/sequoia http://www.redwoodhikes.com/SequoiaNP/SEKI.html https://www.alltrails.com/parks/us/california/sequoia-national-park ____________________ The weather should be nice...not hot during the day, and not cold at night. https://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lon=-118.73172603607182&lat=36.60430983870282#.Vy4NTYQrJpg ____________________ ––– Important for new, first-timers ––– - You are busy, and your time is limited... ...but this section is worth reading. A weekend camping trip is different from other events that meet at a restaurant, bar, movie theater, museum, bowling alley, etc... People are hundreds of miles away from home, and often far from a Walmart, Target, Walgreens, hospital, etc... ...so that's one of various reasons why our event descriptions tend to be long and detailed. Another reason is I'm sometimes picky. My preference is to have small-to-medium size groups. And oftentimes, we have more people who want to go than space is available. So the long, detailed descriptions are intended to provide helpful & relevant info, but also to weed/filter some out. Our desire is to have a group of friendly people who are prepared, equipped, self-sufficient, and serious about attending. Believe it or not, many people thank me during and after our trips end. Apparently, some have a positive and enjoyable experience. My response is it's the people who go that make the trip fun. It's a group collaboration and team effort. The majority of participants are social, friendly, open to making new friends, and willing to hike together, share food together, and help each other. If you don't believe me, check our photos from previous trips: LA group - https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/events/239368546 OC group - https://www.meetup.com/OC_Camping/events/239368574 - Another important thing to know: I'm not a professional organizer, expert camping trip planner, nor group hike leader. Some analogies are: - a bouncer at a club who screens & checks people before allowing them to enter - an admissions officer at a college/university who approves or rejects student applications - a Human Resources manager who decides who to hire - TSA security agent at an airport - In all these examples, most people don't become friends with them. Once you enter a nightclub, you dance with other people inside the club. You don't dance with the bouncer. Once you get into a college/university, you choose which classmates to be friends with. You don't hang out with the admissions officer. Once you start a new job, you choose which co-workers to be friends with. You normally don't spend time with anyone from HR. If there is a serious problem/conflict, then sure, maybe the bouncer/security guard or HR official steps in and intervenes, but for the most part, there is limited interaction. - Before a camping trip starts, I'm busy coordinating and communicating with various people, answering questions, facilitating carpooling arrangements, providing relevant info & details, so that everybody is prepared for the trip and ready to go. But once a trip starts (after you enter the club, get accepted into college, start a new job), then my role is diminished. Oftentimes, I just want to relax. I want some peace & quiet. So sometimes I hike by myself. I always try to meet everyone and chit chat a little, but sometimes I'm exhausted and stressed, that I need some alone time to unwind. Therefore, I don't lead group hikes or group activities. Of course, I'll share recommendations and provide tips/advice on various hikes/activities, but sometimes I'm stressed & tired and do my own thing. Our group usually has smart and experienced people, so we rarely ever have a problem with group activities, and many people can find others to hike with or hang out with. Last year, at least 3 trips, I stayed up until 1 or 2 am, waiting for people to arrive. One trip, someone got a flat tire, and arrived the next morning, and while some wanted me to join them for hiking, I stayed at the campsite and waited for the person with the fixed tire to arrive. Earlier this year, someone who needed a tent, arrived around 2:40 am, and I stayed up, (no problem, I'm happy to help...but I was so tired in the morning, I couldn't go hiking with the rest of the group). I'm not complaining...I'm merely explaining, that once a trip starts, I tend to be stressed and tired, so I'm sometimes unavailable...but other group members step up, and they are very friendly, helpful, and proficient at bringing people together for hiking, meals, bonfire, etc. So if you're brand new to our trips, I feel it's important to disclose this...and you should know this before deciding to join our trip or not. What makes our group trips awesome...is the group members...not me. You will enjoy meeting them...not me. Other people/groups plan trips costing $60 - $100+, so their trips are probably professionally organized, and way better than our trip. If you need someone to hold your hand, babysit you, or coddle you...then this trip is not for you. Other groups plan bigger & better trips that you might enjoy more. But if you are friendly, open-minded, flexible, and willing to meet some nice and fun people, then our group trips attract several quality individuals, so you have an opportunity to have an exciting weekend in a beautiful environment. - Here's a link to the Google Doc that will have more info/details, and should scare most new people away: tbd ____________________ I'm not a mind-reader, so if anyone is seriously interested in attending, please contact me directly (message me via Meetup) with a quick message to inquire about the trip. I probably will give an ambiguous/vague answer that space is limited, that we'll give priority to those who I've met before, but maybe we'll have room for a few new people. If using the Meetup app on your phone, look under Attendees, and tap on wise|man. If using a computer / laptop, you can also look under Attendees for my profile/account, or you can go directly to https://www.meetup.com/LA_Camping/members/69743242 or https://www.meetup.com/OC_Camping/members/69743242 and click on "message" - Again, I apologize it's easy for many to "RSVP" and sign up for this event, but we honestly have limited space, and with this pandemic, we need to keep the size small for safety & health reasons. Maybe in 2021 or 2022, things will return to normal, and more attendees can join. In the meanwhile, for the very few who REALLY want to attend, maybe we'll have room, so if we can squeeze you in, then please answer the following: (1) Do you understand coronavirus / COVID-19 is contagious and highly transmissible? Do you understand many health/medical experts believe those who are obese, older/elderly, are immunocompromised, and/or have comorbidities are more susceptible to serious health issues & complications, such as death? If you have bad health, a weak immune system, or a chronic disease such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, hypertension, lung or asthma problems, atherosclerosis, or any other health issue, please consult with your doctor or healthcare provider. I don't want to discriminate anyone for their age or health, but staying at home might be safer for you. Thank you. (2) Are you an essential worker? Do you live with anyone who is? What have you been doing for the past few weeks/months? Other than going out for food or exercising around your neighborhood, have you gone anywhere else? If yes, where and when/how often? (3) In other words, have you mostly stayed at home (self-quarantine and isolation), or have you been going out? Whenever you left your home, did you wear a mask? Have you been exposed to large groups/crowds? (4) Have you been exposed to anyone who is sick or tested positive for COVID-19? For 2-3 weeks prior to this trip, can you abstain from going to any bar, restaurant, gym, protest, and any other indoor gathering that is not work-related nor essential (church or religious gathering, party, etc.) ? Basically, can you please avoid getting sick / infected? (5) Do you understand we cannot promise nor guarantee a coronavirus-free environment? We don't know nor can control if other attendees, other campers at the campground, previous person who used the restroom before you, someone you walk by on a hiking trail, etc. is infected/contagious. (6) If our small group trip has room for you, do you plan on bringing and wearing a mask? Would you wear a mask while at the campground? (7) Can you bring your own cleaning & disinfectant supplies (e.g. alcohol-based, bleach, or Lysol spray or wipes, paper towels, wet naps/baby wipes, hand sanitizer, soap, etc.) ? (8) If you feel sick or experience any symptom (e.g. fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion, runny nose, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, etc.) or any other unusual irregularity or symptom, do you agree to voluntarily not attend this trip, or if after the trip begins, you start to feel sick after arriving, then you will leave immediately? In other words, will you do your part to make sure nobody is exposed or infected by you? (9) Did you read this Google Doc? tbd (10) Do you want to drive or ride with someone else? If you can drive others, how many passengers can you accommodate? Please keep in mind space for backpacks, camping gear (tents, sleeping bags, etc.), food/cooler, clothes, etc. It's totally fine if you want to drive alone/solo. My sense is most/all will want to drive separately, but sometimes people don't have a car or some drivers don't want to go alone. I'm merely asking in case anyone is comfortable with carpooling. If you're a driver, you'll have 100% decision-making ability in who rides with you. In other words, you can decide/choose if someone else goes with you or not. (11) What time do you want to leave SoCal? What city/area are you leaving from? (12) Have you camped before? Do you have your own camping gear (e.g. tent, sleeping bag, mat/pad/cot, etc.) ? How small/big is your tent? (13) Do you understand you are responsible for bringing / buying your own food? (14) Have you visited Sequoia National Park before? Did you read the info in the Google Doc about some campsites having limited space for tents and parking? If you want to drive, are you okay with parking in an overflow parking lot or elsewhere? (15) Do you understand space is limited and not all who RSVP'ed can attend? Why would you be a good addition to our group trip? (16) Do you have a preference on what you want to do/see? (17) What is your personality like? Can you get along with others (new people)? Are you friendly with diverse individuals of different demographics (e.g. age, ethnicity, background, lifestyle, politics, religion, socioeconomic status, etc.)? (18) Do you understand we can't control the weather? (19) Can you let me know if you want to bring a pet/dog, child/minor, or guest/friend? Do you understand dogs are not allowed on any hiking trails in Sequoia NP? (20) Do you understand Wiseman is not your tour guide, babysitter, waiter, maid, servant, or employee? (21) Do you understand and accept if you do/say anything inappropriate, disrespectful, offensive, illegal, egregious, and/or annoying, you will be asked to leave, and you will comply? (22) Do you understand and accept you are responsible for your safety, yourself, all your belongings/property, and anyone (pet/dog, child, friend/guest, etc.) you bring, and you will not hold anyone else (i.e. Wiseman) liable nor responsible for anything that happens to you, your body/health, your possessions, and/or anyone you bring, and do you agree and accept section 6 of Meetup's TOS? - http://www.meetup.com/terms (23) If you're female, can you let me know if any guy harasses you or makes you feel unsafe/uncomfortable? (24) If you're male and we've never met, can you send a selfie/photo of yourself holding a piece of paper with my name (Wiseman), your full name, and the date to [masked] or text it to[masked] ? (25) If you're male and we've never met, when we meet at the campground, can you show me your Driver's License ? - FAQ Q: Why don’t you ask women to send a photo? A: Because I’m sexist. After 40+ camping trips of encountering hundreds of people, I don’t remember any woman harassing a man, but a few men have bothered women, so now I take extra precaution with just guys. - Q: Why do you want to see a guy's Driver's License? A: Similar to a bartender/server/bouncer checking ID when someone enters a bar or buys alcohol; or some store cashiers check ID when a customer uses a credit card, I want to confirm names. This is my way of deterring bad guys from using fake names. Sorry, but believe it or not, some creepy guys are out there...so this should discourage some weird dudes from attending. Thank you for understanding and cooperating. We want this to be a safe trip for all women and men. - If anybody is new to camping and doesn’t have some camping gear/equipment, or wants help coordinating carpooling, just lmk. After messaging me your answers, and if I feel okay about you attending, then a $25 contribution will be collected via Paypal, Venmo, or Zelle. Those who attended a past trip or volunteered with me can contribute less $, like $20. More info on the campsite & final details will be sent to those who confirmed & donated. Money collected will help with Meetup fees and group supplies/expenses incurred for this trip. Leftover money will be used for planning future trips and also to buy some items to help a few homeless individuals. ____________________ Examples of recommended items to bring: - Face mask / covering Disinfectant spray/wipes, cleaning supplies, paper towels, toilet paper, etc. Bug Spray / Insect Repellent / Head or Face Net Sleeping bag (or bed sheet & blanket) Pillow Sleeping pad / mat or air mattress Tent Tarp, stakes, guy lines, and rain fly for tent Appropriate clothes, socks, & shoes Toothbrush, toothpaste, & other hygiene items / toiletries Lip balm / chapstick Hand sanitizer or baby wipes / wet naps Sunglasses, sunscreen, and a hat Earplugs Flashlight / Headlamp / Lantern Portable chair Cell phone charger cable (car adapter) or portable charger Water (or water filter) Water bottles or hydration pack Food (and cookware) Music or games First aid kit & whistle Towel, soap, shampoo, & flip flops / water sandals (if showering) Swimwear, flip flops, & towel (if swimming in lake or river/stream) Misc items (e.g. bowl, cooking utensils, cup, eating utensils, foil, napkins, paper towels, plate, trash bags, ziploc bags, etc.) https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/family-camping-checklist.html ____________________ * Some other camping events in other Meetup groups might prohibit kids. I admire parents who introduce their child(ren) to the outdoors and respect parents who encourage kids to take a break from tv, video games, phones, computers, social media, internet, etc. So parents and kids are welcome to join. I usually ask for a payment per adult, so kids who attend are free. As long as there’s space/room at the campsite, and your child genuinely wants to attend, and it’s not a large # of kids (boys/girls scouts, youth group, your child's sports teammates, etc.). Some people don’t want kids to attend, but I try to be cool, understanding, and supportive of parents. However, we want to avoid a situation where a kid is dragged to camping trip and doesn’t want to be there (foul/negative mood, tantrum, drama, crying, etc.)...so thank you for your cooperation. ____________________ Photo Source/Credit: CNN, NPS, Tracks & Trails, Travel and Leisure, Tripadvisor, Visit California, and Visit Sequoia ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Past events (159)

Camping, Hiking, & Relaxing @ Yosemite

Yosemite Valley Visitor Center

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