Posted by: internationalroutier | May 2, 2010

The Original Kennedy Park Wintercamp…

By Vixen

With Wintercamp almost upon us, I thought it would be a thing to reflect upon WINTERCAMPS we know and love….

I don’t even remember what year it was… I suppose 2000 and something…ah! 2003.

There’s a reason for that, and I daresay that doesn’t make me qualified to write about my scant remembrances of this event. But when has that ever stopped a Routier??

The mercury was plummeting, that I do remember. Friday night, chopping veg and possibly fingers (couldn’t feel them anyway) for the hearty veg soup that was to be our meal. This was the first wintercamp at my folks’ new property. We had been investigating the best spots for months, checking prevailing winds, inclines and such, and thought we had it right. And we must have, for we’ve never really moved (or have we? The mind has forgotten these things…) Not far anyway.

I learned a very important thing at this event, and that was this: Don’t drink spirits from opaque containers (cuz you can’t tell how much you’ve had!!) and whilst whisky keeps you feeling warm, all of a sudden it kicks your legs out from under you and that’s a Bad Thinge when you land in the snow and your own spew. One good thing is that it doesn’t give you a hangover (cuz there’s nothing left in your tummy), but just makes you a bit shaky and a lot sheepish the next day. To any who recall, I am truly sorry. Not a pretty sight.

So, Friday night, whisky in hand, great big snowflakes drifting down out of the sky, people arriving at God Knows Where at all hours. Riding on Bertie’s running boards (you didn’t know he had those, did you?) as we guided them in.

We awoke to the most amazing snow cover. Ice on ropes, frozen food, frozen bodies. It looked fantastic, but I felt a bit too ordinary to really appreciate it or the normally warmly nourishing bowl of porridge.

We’ve never had such a sight at wintercamp since. We’ve had the cold – cold enough to freeze olive oil, cold enough for crystalline rainbows around the moon. We’ve had sleet. Even gleet, but snow…..well, perhaps again this year.

**the author wishes to admit that the original 2003 wintercamp at Kennedy Park was at the end of July, not at the beginning of June like wintercamps since…

** Please note Stanley in the photograph! A veteran of many a Crookwell, Stanley takes it in his stride at Kennedy Park…



  1. I wasn’t there for that one and I can never figure out if I’m glad or not! I was there for the Great Egg Freeze and though Erin was very excited to see the flakes we got that time that was probably cold enough for me. Eggs take a frightfully long time to boil over an open fire when the eggs are frozen and the water is nearasdammit.

  2. In my children’s defence I should point out the civvies are from the morning before the event proper started.

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