From the Desk of John Rourke – June 24th, 2015

This past weekend “The Group” went camping. The Group is the MAG survival group I belong to. Great group of guys and truly feel that we are turning into a Band of Brothers that can be there for each other whenever needed. Camping was good although the heat was. Some of us brought our kids and I brought Christopher – my 12 year old. Did a little fishing and canoeing.


Saturday night supper consisted of a couple of MRE’s from I ate Chili with Beans and Christopher had Ravioli’s. Taste? Fantastic! The built-in heaters in each MRE worked extremely well heating the food packets so hot I could not hold on to them. I was very pleased that Christopher liked the MRE he picked out. He thought they were so “cool”.


Sleeping arrangements were courtesy of a couple of hammocks. My Grand Trunk Skeeter Beeter Pro worked extremely well and two of my fellow members showed me some tricks to setting it up. The Yukon Outfitters rainfly worked well. A small rain storm came through and the rainfly kept my hammock dry.

The high temps kept me up quite late. I didn’t fall asleep until close to 3:00am and woke up at 6:30.


Christopher was to sleep in the orange parachute hammock seen below however I think he got worried about Bigfoot or a mountain lion coming out to get him. Kinda funny – I brought along a pair of night vision binoculars that I bought a few years ago. These things were sold as toys however they actually work pretty well. Christopher was watching the wood line through them and saw things moving around and his mind started playing tricks on him.

The news story about a black bear being seen nearby probably didn’t help. He slept in the Jeep.



It was great being out in nature – even just for a night. Helps put things in perspective and spending time with The Group was good too.




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7 thoughts on “From the Desk of John Rourke – June 24th, 2015”

  1. Good pictures Rourke. Glad you guys had a good time. I wonder if you guys are getting the temps we get here in Texas? I remember waaaay back in the day when we didn’t have A/C. It was always fans in the window. Now of course we were, but still no A/C by default like in most houses now a days.

    Oh, I mentioned to you. They passed the TPA, that’s really disappointing to say the least, but we press on!

  2. Good memories being made brother, this bonding time with son will pay huge dividends will him when he becomes a man with his own family. He will look back with on this.

  3. I still remember my grandfather taking me camping. I remember feeling a bit embarrass with this old man dressed in BDU pants bloused boots with his old campaign hat like a dough boy. He’s passed now and I miss him, I’d give anything for one more camping trip with him. He was old school borne in 1900, Retired NCO, fought in WWI, WWII, Korea, Eight honorable discharges. He was a mans man, soft on women hard on men. Kind of a John Wayne type. Very Dynamic. When he married my divorced grand mother with three little kids (that was bad in those days) he sat the family down at the table for there first family meeting an announced “I promised from this day forward the you have always have a roof over your head, a bed to sleep in, food on the table, clothes on your backs and I will love you all the same and there are no favorites”. He kept his promise to his last day.

  4. Nice weekend. These are the times of your life.

    I camped with my kiddos and a Marine buddy from Camp LeJune always teased my daughter then aged 8 about being bear bait (we were in the Shenandoahs where there were a lot of black bear). Camping in a mountain range made it difficult to find a suitable flat place for the tent and we usually ended up slightly unlevel. My buddy teased my best daughter quite a bit on one trip and she claimed the high side of the tent. Thinking about being put out as bear bait, she didn’t get up to go to the bathroom – and being on the high side, all of us got wet sometime in the night. No one was happy but my friend learned a lesson. Decades later the daughter told me that she really thought we would put her out to be bear bait. Hope this is a reminder to be careful what we tell our kiddos for sometimes they can’t tell an adult jest from fact.


  5. Awesome – those are the meaningful memories you hold on to. I just got back from camping with my teenage boys a week ago, in Wedgefield, SC (Poinsett State Park). Great place to camp but the heat was beyond brutal – I sympathize. Been meaning to get out to the western SC area, as the temps are a little cooler near the mountains. Know of any good campgrounds out that way? Nothing better than to get out in nature and away from all of life’s distractions.

  6. I have spammed you. No matter what configuration I try, I cannot save your pages. No point wasting time on something that I can’t print out and read while traveling.


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