Category Archives: Camping

More Adventures in the Black Hills and Badlands

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Black Hills and Badlands

Recently we had the good fortune to return to Badlands National Park and the Black Hills area. As those of you who have followed my blog for awhile know, I love these places. So when we had the opportunity to partner with Black Hills and Badlands to explore some new places and experiences in western South Dakota, we jumped all… Read more »

Poison Ivy: Seven Things You Need To Know Before You Hit the Trail

Poison Ivy alongside the trail.

When I was kid, early on in my scouting career, I made the rookie mistake of wiping my butt with an unidentified leaf. As you can probably guess, given the nature of this post, that was a very bad call. I had an itchy rash in areas I would have preferred to remain itchy rash free, but I learned a… Read more »

Morning at Bighorn Park and Hiking Back: Mount Whitney, Part 5

The waterfall at Bighorn Park

This post is the final chapter in a five part story about Mount Whitney. If you haven’t read the previous installments you can find them here. Part Five We awoke to a beautiful morning at Bighorn Park; the sun radiated off of every surface, the snow glowed brightly in the light, and some hot coffee hit the spot. We weren’t… Read more »

Search and Rescue, a Fireside Chat: Mount Whitney, Part Four

ice axes on Mount Whitney

This post is the fourth part of a five part story about Mount Whitney. If you haven’t read the previous installments you can find them here. Part Four I leaned against a log in front of the fire as Tim boiled water for dehydrated meals. Jon experimented with melting snow for water and we all talked. The couple we met… Read more »

Avalanches, Waterfalls, and Glissades: Mount Whitney, Part Three

Crossing the field of avalanche debris

This post is the third part of a five part story about Mount Whitney. If you haven’t read the previous installments you can find them here. Part Three Andrew’s route led us up a deep snow bank. The incline started gradually, but grew steeper as we walked. Up we went, nearing a waterfall to our right. As we grew closer,… Read more »

Lost Trails and Helicopters: Mount Whitney, Part Two

Bighorn Park

This post is the second part of a five part story. If you haven’t read the previous installment you can find it here. Part Two Feeling empowered by the crampons on our boots, we quickly crossed a couple of streams on wooden log bridges, and then stepped back into snow. Then came the time to test our new-found confidence, as… Read more »

Lessons in Microadventure from a Rainy Night of Stealth Camping

Our view while stealth camping

“Ready to go?” my friend Mike asked, as I finished a beer while I sat in his living room. I told him that I was as I made my way towards the door. I tied my boots and started layering up. I finished with a rain coat, then slung my Volta onto my shoulders. Time to go. Typically I don’t… Read more »

Adventures in America’s Best Idea: Four National Parks We Visited in 2016

Four National Parks visited in 2016

Our National Parks have been referred to as “America’s Best Idea,” and after Clarissa and I spent  a month traveling the country by car, I can attest that there’s definitely something to that. The National Park Service, and the men and women who work in its employ, labor to ensure that our public lands and history are well taken care… Read more »

On the Road: A Good Stay in the Badlands

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This is the first installment of a new series of posts titled “On the Road,” detailing our adventures during our month-long road trip in Autumn 2016. There’s a lot of material I hope to cover from this adventure, and I hope you enjoy reading about our journey. If you’ve read the post about our first trip to the Badlands, you… Read more »

Not Exactly as Planned: Memorial Day Weekend in Kentucky

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Natural Arch

Sometimes it’s good to get away for awhile. To see something new. To go somewhere you’ve never been before. That’s why Clarissa and I decided to spend Memorial Day weekend camping with a friend in Kentucky. We planned an awesome extended weekend at Lake Cumberland, and as the trip drew nearer we found ourselves growing more and more excited. Remember… Read more »

Go Outside: Outdoor Attractions in the Quad Cities

Quad Cities Outdoor Attractions

Welcome to the Quad Cities! Three and a half years ago I moved to the Quad Cities from my hometown in Central Illinois. Though I’m not a native, I have come to love it here; Whitey’s Ice Cream, local beers, and the Figge Art Museum have all found a place in my heart. I’ll admit I’m still not the biggest fan of… Read more »

Wrong Turns and Strange Precipitation: Camping at Sand Ridge State Forest

Good morning camping at Sand Ridge State Forest

In early April I drove a couple hours south to Sand Ridge State Forest to spend a night alone in one of the back country camp sites. I got a little lost on the trails, dealt with some unusual weather, and had a wonderful time by myself in the woods. Read on for the full story.