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There comes that moment in the spring when the threat of snow is maybe past and the weather isn’t too terrible and it is time to open up the little trailer and start getting ready for another season. This year that day came late because of what a weird cold spring it has been.

But one weekend there were suddenly a few hours of sunshine and we pulled the winter cover off the trailer and hitched it for the first time to our new car and moved it into it’s “summer spot.” Because even if you don’t have a garage to store a trailer in (which is more ideal), you can put a canvas cover over it to protect it and move it to an area where it is out of the way of any snowplow in the driveway.

But then spring arrives and you want to move it to a better place where you can use it for the summer. That spot might make it easier to prep the trailer for trips. And in the best case it is also a place where you can use it at home. Because what is a teardrop when you aren’t traveling? It can be an extra bedroom, a napping spot, a place to write or a party kitchen. It can be all kinds of things that are useful and not just used for taking away from home to camp. We like to use ours for what we call “trailer movie night”– we order a pizza and download a movie to the iPad and tumble into the trailer with the dog to have a nice evening together. And if we crawl under the covers and fall asleep and don’t go back into the house into the middle of the night or even the morning, it’s an even better time. Because we got to “camp out” at home.

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Once we have the trailer in it’s summer spot it is time to assess things and start moving the gear back into it. We strip a lot of the gear out for the winter to store in the house where it won’t freeze or attract critters. We start with cleaning everything again and removing the moisture removal packs that we use to manage the humidity in the winter. It’s always amazing when you first open the trailer after months of storage because the scents of the birch wood and our cedar lined cabinets are amazing. We clear away the spider silks and check for any damage.

Then we get the gear that got moved into the house out of storage and start putting it back. This is a good time to reorganize and think about things that may need to be replaced or updated because inevitably something is broken or lost or even just worn enough to be in need of letting go. Often there are camping items we got for presents during the off season that we need to figure out how they might fit into the new season. We wash all the bedding fresh and put the bed back together. We make a list of things to order to be ready for that first trip. This part happens in bits and pieces as we have time and is all relative to when that first trip might be scheduled. Because you want everything ready to go before you do the “shakedown.”