Sunday, June 29, 2008

Camping with the Bumpuses

I've always wondered what it would be like to have the Bumpuses living next door. This weekend, we got to find out.

For those of you not familiar with the Bumpuses, shame on you. Find Bob Clark's fine film A Christmas Story. Watch it. Relish the few mentions of the unseen Bumpuses -- the hillbilly neighbors of the family in A Christmas Story question. The only Bumpuses you see are the hound dogs, but you can imagine what the family is like from there. We had them as neighbors as we camped at Green Canyon Hot Springs this weekend, and because of our mile-long clothes line, wiener dog and horde of children, we were the Bumpuses for the folks on the other side.

Green Canyon is a good place to find Bumpuses and other hillbilly-like people. Oh, they're friendly. But this is the only campground/hot pool where, to get from your campsite to the pool, you have to navigate a collection of ranch outbuildings, half-built guest houses, farm and road equipment in various stages of rust and decay, a bevy of dogs and one frenzied woman randomly sticking her head into flower beds to toss weeds out at passers by (to her credit, she was not trying to hit people, just generally not paying attention to who was walking by as she tossed her weeds).

I love the scenery, through. Green Canyon is home to Canyon Creek, a rather boisterous stream that chugs out of Madison County's Big Hole Mountains to join the Teton River before it flows through Rexburg, Idaho, about 25 miles distant. The creek has carved a rather deep canyon through the farmland and into the tuff lava rock below, exposing many weird rock formations, including one that looks like a cross between an Easter Island head and a pig. (I'm going to have to drive up there again, and, without children, walk out to the rock for pictures.) I did get pictures of the local flora, which abounds in the form of sage brush and random Idaho wildflowers.

But back to the Bumpuses. We were Bumpuses at first. We set up camper, tent, stole fire pits and picnic tables, then spread a very long clothesline through the campsite on which to dry our swimming suits and towels, plus a pair of socks Liam decided to wear for a jaunt through the dewy grass, the little fool. But we were out-Bumpused when the neighbors showed up, at first giving us the stinkeye because, I don't know, they're from Fremont County and that's their job. They set up their camp, with an even more ancient camper and even more kids tearing about the landscape. We felt right at home.

1 comment:

Camping said...

Your blog makes me feel happy. I love your pictures too. Thank you for sharing.