It was a total coincidence, but since my last post, about how I wanted to play darts outside, I went on a weekend camping trip and ended up playing darts outside. Every year, we go up to a little campsite with my girlfriend’s family and have a weekend of beer drinking, cards, horseshoes, and other games. It’s a real redneck hootenanny!

Anyway, I got to talking with one of the cousins about what he’d been up to when I noticed that in a nearby campsite, some other guys had a dartboard mounted on a backboard and nailed to a tree. I pointed this out to the guy I was talking to, and he said he’d already noticed it, and asked me if I played darts. BINGO!

Well, it turned out the cousin had joined the legion earlier in the year just to join a darts team, and they had won whatever little tournament they played in. Even though he is a very competitive guy, he did admit his teammates carried him. He then asked me if I wanted a game, and I was like, “Yeah, sure, let’s go over and challenge them over there.” Then he told me he had a dartboard in his truck and we should set that up and have a little practice first. I could tell this was going to be the coolest camp-out yet.

So we went to the truck and he pulled out this cheap coiled paper board that’s already seen a bit of outside action, but he had no backboard. A skinny tree was selected as it had one of the evenest throwing area. We then spent the next thirty minutes, with limited tools, trying to remove and reverse the hanger at the top of the board as we didn’t have a screw long enough to reach the tree. Once we got the board fixed to the tree, it was kind of wobbly and lay at a different angle than we expected. The angle was easily fixed by moving our original toe line, and the wobbliness wasn’t too bad after a few throws at the board, which saved us from ramming a screw right into the board, which would have been the next step.

I hadn’t brought my darts with me, so I had to make do with some big fat brass bombers. But after a few games, I kind of got into my flow, and they weren’t too bad, although I swear I hit inner bull about twenty times before one actually stuck in it! Luckily, everyone who ended up playing rarely missed the board, as with no backboard and a bit of drop behind the target, the dart did travel a fair distance when we did miss the board. The biggest pain, though, came from the spider, as the staples kept coming loose. It would slip so every few throws, so we had to push the few staples we didn’t lose back into the board and adjust it.

We never did go over and play against the other guys with their darts set-up, but we played a lot of darts that weekend. The dodgy board added to the fun and made it a little more challenging, and I didn’t even mind using the heap darts I wasn’t used to. Even though we didn’t get too competitive, playing under the shade of trees was one of the best times I’ve had playing darts in a long time.

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