Movies to Watch Before You Go Camping

My family just returned from a short little camping venture in Oklahoma. It was so refreshing to get away from the lights and the noise of the metroplex, and get the chance to stargaze with the deer, chase down after the eye-glow of critters from our flashlights, and careen down leaves-obscured slopes. Going camping or hiking always gives me the sense of “coming home”(I’ll never feel like a city-girl, never no never) and it’s always rough coming back down off that high from fresh-air and the soughing of trees. Fortunately, movies are a great escapist way of getting that buzz–or better yet, pumping yourself for your next big camping adventure!

Planning on taking a trip soon? I’m jealous. Really, really jealous. Now to get you all jazzed and giddy like me while you plan and pack:

So you’re headed for the deep wooded mountains of the Sierras, Yellowstone, or Yukon. So awesome! But, are you terrified of bears? Do you have midnight sweats just thinking about them snuffling around the edge of your tent and hoping to God that you remembered to rope your food up in a tree many, many yards away? … no? Then it’s time for you to watch The Edge. Starring Anthony Hopkins and Alec Baldwin during their heydays, this movie not only includes some great survival methods and unique bear behavior, but those grisly bear massacre’s will fuel many a nightmare to come. Whee! Hope you remember to bring your bear-spray. Alternatively, check out The Grey for the same effect. Only, well, wolves.

Are the Great Plains calling your name? Do you dream of whispering swathes of grass and enormous big blue skies? Dances with Wolves is the prime cut when it comes to lustrous music (by composer John Barry) set against the gorgeous backdrop of South Dakota’s badlands and Wyoming’s hill country. And if you’re a fan of wolves or buffalo, or alternative perspectives on the cowboys and indians genre, well gosh. Why haven’t you seen this movie yet?

Or are you just chasing down that big open sky as is? Maybe toss in a couple glacier tipped mountain vistas and BAM! You’re a happy camper. Why not check out Big Country with Gregory Peck and Charlton Heston to get your fill of that beautiful Montana landscape while sobbing over that whole Montague vs Capulet plot (fun fact: the guy who plays the grisly, shotgun-totin’ Rufus  is the same hugable fellow who sang “Ugly Bug Ball“).

Looking into the rugged beauty of the Southwest? Check out Red River or The Searchers, or really, pretty much any John Ford western for that ol’ saddle leather and biscuits mood. Or, if you prefer more snark and monsters in your high-desert chaparral, check out the first Tremors movie. Then at least you can pretend there’s giant worms tunneling away beneath you whenever you see a dust devil or a tumbleweed totter over sideways.

Can’t decide where you want to go, but you just want the adventure~ of it all!? Go and watch the Lord of the Rings trilogy for seriously the longest, most grueling backpacking trip ever documented. (and, please, if anyone ever figures out that ultra-light lembas bread recipe, send it my way, huh? Gorp is really heavy :/) Because, honestly, that trilogy really has it all: idyllic rolling hills , craggy monsterous mountains, deep eddied rivers, boglands and steppes, caves and hidden valleys, oh my!


Been camping recently? Did you watch or read anything to fuel your fanaticism? Let me know in the comments below. I’d love to piggyback on your joy for my next trip!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.