Long weekends and camping go hand in hand in Manitoba. Lately, with rain every two days and a little break now and then with sun, how’s that affecting camping enthusiasts?

We visited Miller’s Campground just east of Portage and asked some campers how they’re faring.

Derek says he’s been in Miller’s for nine years and have quite enjoyed it each year. He notes weather-wise, they’ve been limited in their outdoor activities.

“You basically go camping to be outside. So, when you get a summer that’s been as wet as it's been, it kind of hampers what you do and when and what you can do, but you make the best. I'm not complaining because of the winters, but we still enjoy coming out here and, and camping.”

He notes he’s still hearing forecasters talk about a drought and things being dry as well as a hot summer, but adds it’s July and we haven't seen that much.

“I don't even think we've even had a hot day yet. Some hot days would dry things out and that would be very helpful for camping. We spent quite a bit of time out here more than just weekends. We've not had two days where there hasn't been some kind of precipitation. Some days, it's light but on some like Friday, I think somebody said they had half an inch in their rain gauge.”

Derek says in some low-lying areas, the water's just pooling due to a high water table.

“We're here mostly for the entire summer and we just make with whatever weather it is, put a sweater on, or whatever. We just enjoy being outdoors and if the weather’s not great, we have a gazebo. We're sitting there when it's raining and we just enjoy being out here.”

Daniela Diaz was with her mother and family and says they had a little breakfast Saturday on the campground and it was yummy.

“My cat is here with me, so we got to set her stuff up. Her name is Strawberry. She likes to be outside a lot. It's very fun. She enjoys being outside. I also enjoy being outside. It's very fun being with family. You get to go swimming. You get to play board games, stay up late and eat s'mores. It's very fun.”

DanielaYaretzi Rangel, Maria Rangel, Arely Tapia, and Daniela Diaz

She notes they’re staying til Canada Day. She adds the mosquitoes haven’t bothered her too much, so it’s been great.

Keith Shewfelt has a seasonal lot at Miller’s and has been there for over 20 years. He notes this year is definitely more damp and cool than 2023.

“This is our summer home. We come here for the five months or whatever, and go to Arizona in the winter.”

Keith ShewfeltKeith Shewfelt

A yard sale was taking place Saturday afternoon at Miller’s and he had a table set up with items. A band is slated to play Sunday night at the ball diamond.

Teagan Glanville works at the campgrounds and is with her grandmother who camps there. She said Saturday and Sunday were good days.

Grace Glanville and Teagan GlanvilleGrace Glanville and Teagan Glanville

Grace Glanville notes the weather’s seen rain every second or third day, but It seemed to dry up enough to cut the grass in between, more or less.

“This this week has turned out good. We had a pancake breakfast this morning with the neighbours and that's always fun. And we have lots of potlucks in between rainstorms and so, all in all, it's not too bad for camping. The fronts (daily lots), (we're in a seasonal lot), have filled up at the front pretty good this weekend.”

They’ve had their seasonal site for eight years. Teagan adds, “It's been slow at the beginning of the season. It's completely booked this weekend. So, hopefully the next weekends things continue like that.”

Jason Komoski is from Winnipeg and has a seasonal site, as well.

Jason KamoskiJason Komoski

“So far, it’s been different. Considering the good winter that we had, spring's been bad; just two or three hot days, and then a lot of rain. I've been coming out camping anyway every weekend regardless. The bugs are more so now and earlier than they were last year, and then the ground is still really moist.”

He notes you can’t get any heavy construction pieces there to see tree removal, seeing as there's been really no steady hot and dry days.

“We're still having fun regardless. Even if it's raining, we find something to do; play games inside.”

Gerry Arbez is from Headingley and also agrees the year’s been somewhat wet.

“My toes are starting to web, but short of that – hey – it's still fun and we're still out here. We only got this place (seasonal lot) last July. It's been exactly a year. It's an unusual spring, and summer. It’s bound to stop raining one of these days, I guess. It won't stop us from camping; never. It's beautiful out here. It's a nice place and we want to get outdoors and enjoy it.”

Gerry ArbezGerry Arbez

He says it’s a great park and the lost are quite nice and large with big mature trees, and a big canopy.

“It's a great place to enjoy the outdoors.”

He notes his family plans on checking out Delta Beach, the climbing wall, and the water slides in Portage, or perhaps even a shopping day.

Another seasonal lot camper is Gil Patenaude from Winnipeg.

“It's been a little challenging. I think we need a canoe. Mosquitoes; lots of mosquitoes. But it was nice Saturday. It's beautiful. We come out every weekend for sure. It's manageable weather.”

Gil Patenaude with familyGil Patenaude with family

He notes he has been at Miller’s for one year as of last week.

“We have the grandkids in today, so it's always wonderful when the grandkids can show up. We get to play. It's a great park and great neighbours. I love it.”

Alesha Prena is also from Winnipeg. She adds they try to go camping when they can, noting they would have done so before this past weekend had it not been for the weather.

Alesha PrenaAlesha Prena

“There's just a lot of mosquitoes. So that's the thing. We’re here for just one night. I hope there's more sun. For Canada Day, we’ll, probably go back into the city and go to a Centrepoint Park if there's no rain.”

Justin Brown is from Miniota and came with his daughter and family for a baseball game that wound up being cancelled due to rain Friday.

“We haven't done too much camping, just due to the weather and the rain. And every other day, it seems to rain. But we're trying to enjoy it as much as we can. The sun's shining, so hopefully, it turns out to be a nice day and we enjoy the rest of the weekend.”

Jocelyn, Piper and Justin BrownJocelyn, Piper, and Justin Brown

They arrived Friday at 4 p.m.  and were able to enjoy one campfire before it started raining.

For Canada Day, we're going to enjoy the scenery and have a campfire; maybe hang out with the kids and, hopefully, go swimming. We had provincials (baseball games) in Portage here on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, but they got canceled due to the rain. We're going to try again next weekend, I think, is the plan. We’re with the Miniota Royals Girls Softball team U13. It's been actually pretty good. We had a couple rain delays and games, and that was pretty much it.”

He notes their team has been doing quite well, and ended up fifth in the league.

“So, the girls played really good and Dad did really well. This would be the last tournament of the year for us.”

Dylan Woods was with her grandparents, and says camping this year was better as far as mosquitoes were concerned, and this year notes she loves camping with friends and family.  She adds this year also saw yard sales at the Campground. 

"When you think of camping, you think of a fire pit and tent," adds Dylan. "Camping is camping and it doesn't matter about the weather."