5 Dads Go Wild, Brand Love

Only 4 Months Until #5DadsGoWild and I’m Not Ready

The 5dads go wild trip is something I look forward to all year. In fact, I think about it at least once every day. In brief, it’s a camping trip where 5 BC-based Dad Bloggers, Vloggers, and Content Creators meet up and spend a little time away from their day-to-day lives and reconnect with themselves, each other, and nature.

Last year’s night sky


I remember back to last time, talking around the fire with 4 other dads that I hadn’t met before. Making s’mores, joking around, and talking about who would be eaten by bears first. In the morning, we all woke up from our night of attempted sleep (apart from Stephen who slept like a log in his palatial tent) waking up and brewing a huge press of coffee and immediately making a second one. 


I remember the incredible backache I got because I thought the cheapest air mattress would be good enough, and the freezing nights outside because I waited until the last minute to find the only available tent in the store.

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I have a tremendous amount of guilt in going on this trip. Why do I get to go away with my friends and leave my wife at home with our daughter? That doesn’t seem fair. 


Luckily, she’s the first one to remind me that trips like this are important for my happiness. I need friends and this is part of making long-term friendships work. Thank goodness I have her to keep telling me this, or I’d completely let self-care slip away and become resentful without even knowing it. I have always found it easy to be an ‘accommodator’. I will put other people’s needs before my own and then feel like I’m getting the raw deal. It’s my own fault and forcing myself to make the 5Dads kind of plans is a way to pull myself out of the self-destructive habit. 

I’m working my way to put self-care among my top priorities, even if it still feels a bit selfish to me. 

Mountain range, E.C. Manning Park, forest, woods,
Waking up outside is something everyone must do at least once

Oh, sorry! I forgot to introduce the Dads:

Dale Allen Berg, parent to three amazing kids, organizer of the Parenting101 conference in Kelowna, and recent winner of the (SocialDad) Canadian Dad Blogger of the Year award

Stephen Fung, Tech reviewer, gadget lover, and father to an award-winning young gymnast. Stephen came the most prepared last year, with a huge tent, every kind of utensil, a hotpot, and some pretty amazing camping slipper-boots. I wonder if they’ll make a comeback.

Michael Kwan, writer of Beyond The Rhetoric, YouTube vlogger, and Dad to a charming little girl.

Stacey Robinsmith, breadmaker, high school teacher, part-time cabin dweller, and the most outdoorsy Dad among the group. His two girls, nicknamed ‘Blonde Bear’ and ‘Brown Bear’ often make an appearance in his online stories.

Me! – James Smith, writer of SocialDad.ca, car-lover, Photographer, serial idea conjuror, and Marketing Strategist. I have an amazing daughter who I’m sure will be an outdoors-enthusiast like me.

Crazy hair but loves playing in the leaves.

Why these Dads? Well, they were the ones who signed up when I put out the idea of a camping trip. There are lots of other amazing Dad-bloggers in our community, but sometimes life (or distance) gets in the way. The invitation is always open!


Our sponsors (so far) and why they want to be involved:

After being a reason to, and motivator for the Dads to put themselves first for once, the trip is a content-creation journey.

We all load up with our cameras, video gear, notepads, and pens, and capture memories and thoughts from the trip. We also take pride in reviewing all the gear that we bring with us so that other families and budding campers can make purchasing decisions based on honest testimonials instead of ads.

Even though, in an aim to be completely transparent in the fact that we’re loaned or given products to talk about, we have to say ‘ad’ or ‘Sponsored’, our reviews are always completely honest and if we don’t like something, we’ll make sure we share that too.

Last year we worked with some amazing brands and can’t wait to do that again. They help us make the trip actually happen, as well as giving us some cool things to talk about while we’re on the adventure.

We’re still looking for a couple more companies to work with, namely anything that will keep us warm on the cold nights.

Luckily, the trip has already had some incredible people say they like what we’re doing and want to help out:

Ford and Lincoln Canada – vehicles to get the Dads to the campground, to drive up to the lodge for a WiFi fix, and to retreat to in case of storms or bears. I’ve asked to borrow a Ranger, while the other Dads prefer the luxury of a Lincoln SUV. We’ll see which we prefer when we’re on the road.

Outland Living – Keeping us warm on the cold nights will be one of these awesome fire bowls, made by a local company right here in BC. Follow them on Instagram now, here.

Altitude-sports – We’re still working on details with my long-time brand friends here, but we know we’re bringing some pretty sweet stuff!

Blue Moose Cafe – a much-loved spot in Hope, BC and is always perfect for ice cream, great coffee, sandwiches, and lots more:

Stanley PMI – creators of a huge assortment of tried and tested, and much-respected lunchboxes, coffee cups, thermos mugs, and water bottles. I’ve got a range of products to hand out to the Dads and we’ll review them all throughout the weekend.

The House of Knives, these great people are helping us out again. Last year we were set up with everything we needed to ensure our kitchenware stayed sharp, as well as a variety of the highest quality Chefs’ knives that I’m still learning how to use. I’m excited to see what they come up with this year!

What’s in it for the sponsors?

The sponsors and brand partners get a concentrated blast of ads and product plugs from the 5 content creators, who are all sharing tips and inspiration throughout the weekend. We all want to make better videos, write more interesting blogs, and build more real engagement across our social platforms. We want to figure out how to be good dads and give our kids the best start. 

Our partner brands recognize our intentions and have shared their love for what we’re doing. Dads look to other dads because often, there just aren’t many other resources available. We are our own support network, which is why these trips are so important. 


We’ve built a little community and this getaway without kids and without our partners is a way to reconnect, even if it’s just once a year. 

The fresh, hot coffee was a very welcome relief from a cold night

What I still need to do:

Gah! There’s still everything to do. I have to reach out to more brand partners, plan the content to go out, the fun little teaser videos, for an event you can’t get tickets to, the shopping for food and picking up supplies, the packing, oh and I still need to get a new camera so I can take some photos and create some videos of the beautiful scenery.

The next 5 Dads Go Wild adventure will be on September 27-29th in Manning Park, BC. Stay tuned for more updates and watch out for the #5DadsGoWild hashtag on your favourite social channels.


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