It's stories like this that I personally like reading most on backpacking and why I go backpacking. Talking about gear is okay and can be interesting, but it gets SOOOOOOO boring after a while... the same thing over and over again.
I lived in Oregon for 10 years and fell deeply in love with it, espcially the Cascades. Unfortunately I never visited the Wallowas. My dream is to go back to Oregon one day and spend the rest of my remaining years exploring the wild places there. It is one place that forever stays in my heart.
I've never been able to understand why it is that it is perfectly fine for women to have a "women's night out" or even go on a women's-only backpacking trip, because these are times when the women feel they can relax and just be themselves without having to deal with the anomalies that men bring into the mix, but when men want to do the same thing, it is "sexist". So, does that mean that men should, under no circumstances, ever get together without women? Are men not allowed to just feel themselves and do things they way they feel comfortable with without the ever watching eyes of women? And is there nothing of value that men can teach children from a male perspective, that women cannot teach them? Women feel that they can teach children female values and ways of seeing things that men just cannot, but not men? That is grossly unfair, and to be honest, sexist thinking in its own right.
There are reasons why the number of men who go outdoors far outstrips the number of women. Upbringing and the social mores are, of course, significant in how women perceive their relationship to the outdoors, and the way a lot of the outdoor industry has been set up until now clearly favors the way men tend to look at and do things. But there is also the way a lot of women feel about being out there. Many don't want to deal with the dirt and the heavy packs and the fast pace that many men often want to impose on themselves. That's perfectly fine, and to each their own, but does that mean that men should then give up what makes them happy just to please women who don't want to do those things?
More and more there is a very troubling trend around the world, by women and the media, to completely render insignificant anything that smacks of being male. While I completely agree that the way women have been treated by men until now truly needed reform and men need to make a concerted effort to understand women's issues, I don't think it should be at the expense of men's identity and sense of dignity. Men are still people and have their own ways of seeing things. Not all of it is wrong or damaging. (just like not all of the way women see things is right and healing, either) I'm sure the children in this article learned a lot from the father's rules, including the girls. I'd love to read the rest of the rules!
One of my favorite quotes, "Men are from Earth, women are from Earth. Deal with it!"