We became campers when we purchased our Honda Element many years ago. I’m sure it’s not the usual way a couple becomes a camping couple – through a car purchase – but the Element opened up a whole new way of life for us. How did this happen? One day, shortly after we purchased our new car, we were discussing the Element’s ability to convert into a bed of sorts. The front seats completely lay flat and meet up with the back seats that also lay flat, in essence turning the seating into a bed. That conversation lead to us “testing” out this functionality and spending the night in a nearby campground.

That one night lead to years of camping. First, of course, sleeping in our Element. We perfected our two-night camping stay in the Element over a couple of years and even brought “luxury” items like a laptop to watch movies in the evenings.

camping in the element was easy.

But if you’ve been camping a while, you know that over time your camping paraphernalia begins to grow. First it’s one cooler that turns into two. Then, it’s a double-burner stove, two chairs, two bikes, and a camping cook bin. That’s what began happening with each of our camping trips and we soon grew out of camping in the Element. Our camping set up was slowly turning into a GLAMping set up.

Big, heavy tent
Big, heavy tent

We purchased a large tent, with room enough for Mr. LH to stand in (he’s 6’2″) with two rooms; one bedroom and one additional room to hold our stuff. Yet the ground was hard compared to our Element sleeping arrangement. That lead to an air mattress which led to a generator to blow up the air mattress. We eventually ditched the laptop and movie for a night under the stars and in front of a campfire. GLAMping makes camping comfortable (with all the comforts of home) and allows us to camp for three or more days at a time, especially if the campground has running water.

glamping looks comfy, right?
glamping looks comfy, right?

The drawback to GLAMping? The amount of stuff we take with us is a bit of a chore. Packing the car, hauling the very heavy tent, deciding if we’ll take the bikes or haul our own wood for the campfire; all of these decisions lead to a very stuffed Element. GLAMping also isn’t as spontaneous as camping; it’s more difficult to decide last minute if we want to go somewhere because the thought of packing all of our stuff often deters us.

So, where do we go from GLAMping? Lately we’ve been discussing a pop-up trailer. It satisfies our need for a comfortable sleeping arrangement and it still has a tent-feel with open sides. We’re not quite ready to throw in the GLAMping towel and give up our tent, but I do foresee a pop-up in our future.

Have you gone from camping to GLAMping? Or GLAMping to a trailer or RV? How do you keep your camping minimal?


  1. Money Beagle Reply

    We went from a small tent when it was just the two of us, to a big tent like you have when my son came into the picture, and then made the jump to a trailer when we added child #2. But we camp a lot with it, probably 25 nights a year, so we definitely get the use out of it that justifies the expense.

    • I think that’s great! A pop up is definitely in our future. I’ve seen a decrease in our camping nights partly due to all the stuff we haul. It used to be so easy. I want it to be easy again! 😉

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