Tag Archives: camping

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 »

Gear Review: The Cotopaxi Volta 35L Rolltop (Updated!)

Cotopaxi Volta out in the field.

Last year I reviewed my Cotopaxi Volta Rolltop. Now, with more experiences and insight under my belt, I’m updating that review.

Want to know how my opinion has evolved? Read on to find out.

Spoiler Alert: I still think this pack is excellent!

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.

A Winter’s Night, Alone.

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It’s 3:30 in the morning, time to drag yourself out of your sleeping bag and stoke the fire, but when you stick your head out into the cold night air, you discover that there is no fire. The wind picked up while you slept and stoked the flames; the fire burned itself out, leaving nothing but a few smoldering coals…. Read more »

This Plan Could Save Your Life: Part 2

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What do you do when things go wrong? We like to believe that we’ll think rationally in the heat of the moment, but that’s not always the case. This is why you should always have a Bail Out Plan when you’re going to be in potentially dangerous situations. What’s a Bail Out Plan? Read on to find out!

Gear Review & GIVEAWAY: Cotopaxi Luzon 18L Daypack (Giveaway Concluded)

If you’ve been reading my posts, especially my review of my Volta Rolltop, then you know how much I respect and admire Cotopaxi.  My Volta has treated me so well that when I started looking for a daypack, I wanted to check out Cotopaxi’s Luzon 18L Daypack. So Clarissa and I each ordered one, figuring we could get our first… Read more »

Car-Camping at Loud Thunder Forest Preserve

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Life has been pretty stressful over the last few months for Clarissa and I. We’ve had a lot going on, and as the wedding approaches, she’s been getting a little stressed about elements of that. This has meant that I’ve been getting stressed out over them. We decided to take last weekend off from responsibilities and do a weekend of… Read more »

Camp Etiquette 101

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Since Clarissa and I are planning to camp along the Mississippi River this weekend, I’ve been thinking about the variety of people I’ve run into during my adventures. So many of these people were Boy Scouts in my youth. As I’ve gotten older, this isn’t the case anymore, but I’m often reminded of my scouting experience. Regardless of what we may think about… Read more »

A Weekend of Car-Camping at Lake Ahquabi State Park

Clarissa and I spent the weekend with friends at Lake Ahquabi State Park in Iowa, not too far from Des Moines. It’s not a bad little campsite, all things considered. There were lots of RVs there, many children zooming around on bikes, and a fair amount of dogs in the park. That being said, our neighbors were all pretty respectful and… Read more »