What got you into camping?
I was born in Brooklyn and grew up in Long Island, so before I joined the ROTC in college, I had never slept outside. Suddenly, I was carrying around a 75-pound pack through these beautiful places in the middle of the desert. I thought, Hey, I can do this without the M-16.
Do you prefer civilian camping gear or military?
Civilian. My favorite new product is the SteriPen, this portable ultraviolet light that purifies water ($100).
What’s your favorite place to camp in New York?
Harriman State Park gets really overcrowded; I prefer North-South Lake in the Catskills. Also the Adirondacks, but stay away until after the Fourth of July—the black flies there will actually draw blood.