Calvin & Hobbes may have nailed what it was like to be a kid, but we would argue that the comic was a little harsh on camping. Escaping from civilization so you can breathe fresh air mingled with bugspray and campfire smoke is purifying for the soul. Throw in some s’mores, a (hopefully) clear night sky, and the joy of exploring the great outdoors to get a truly pleasurable escape from everyday life. Even if the sky isn’t that clear and you happen to get caught in the rain, the right gear can make anything bearable — maybe even enjoyable. Besides, we’ll channel our inner Calvin’s Dad and say that regardless of what happens, some things just build character.