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Rhon Bell

Rhon Bell, an outdoor enthusiast, spends his time exploring the Maine Woods and documenting his journeys. Growing up in Aroostook County, he embraced the outdoor lifestyle at a young age. Living today near Portland, he spends weekends and week-long adventures hiking New England summits, canoeing the historic Maine waterways, and ice fishing for lake trout. Follow the journey as Window to the Woods discovers new destinations, and check out his other blog, Backwoods Plaid.

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Window to the Woods with Rhon Bell
Posted: August 8, 2013

Cooking Over Fire | Camping in Rangeley | Storms Blowing In

The smart move before any camping trip should be tuning into a NOAA weather station for a hint at the weekend outlook. Unfortunately for my fiance, we took Friday off to head up near Rangeley only to setup camp to watch storm clouds move in. Miles from town is exactly where I like to be. Our remote campsite isn’t within 20 miles of pavement. Exactly where she doesn’t like to be when I turn on my weather scanner to hear that the threats of severe thunderstorms and dangerous hail are moving in to the area. I do my best to lie and say we’re safe in our tent. It would also help if I’d remembered the tent stakes.

The winds are picking up as 5PM rolls around, lifting corners of the tent (a very heavy 6 person tent). I strategically relocate the cooler, pack  basket, hiking bag and a heap of clothes into each of the tent’s four corners. Safety.

The dark clouds overtake the sky. Not allowing the storm to interupt our enjoyment, we overturn the picnic table and use it as a tie down point for our tarp – this campfire will not go out.


A weekend’s worth of firewood is brought to dry safety before the rain begins.


Dry campwood beats wet campwood ten times out of ten.


I’ll blindly assume that other than a few claps of thunder overnight, and a constant downpour that there was no hail. I can say that with fairly decent certainty – I’m a heavy sleeper but my fiance is not. I woke up with her beside me, instead of curled up in the back of the Jeep. Success.


No morning at camp is complete without frying up a pound of bacon and then frying up a dozen eggs in the remaining grease. That’s a breakfast that will stick with you all day.


Camp games. Ever heard of “Polish Horseshoes“? Technically you use poles. We don’t have poles. We have campwood. Object of the game is to knock the bottle from atop the stick. It may or may not also involve consuming a few beverages. Find the rules, here.

Grasshopper duals. Slightly less interesting than Polish Horseshoes.


Attentive camper.


When you eat a pound of bacon and a dozen eggs for breakfast, you can safely skip lunch. Dinner is diced sausage, sweet potato and onions. Cook in foil over open flame for 40 minutes, turning regularly then drizze with BBQ sauce.

Campwood tables. Campwood is very purposeful today.


Side dish.


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