Out of the classroom and into the woods

“Does anyone want to play ‘Mafia’?”  Not something you typically hear on a backpacking trip, but this time, I was chaperoning a group of 13-15 year olds, so nothing I heard really surprised me.  When I signed up to lead a couple of wilderness trips for a local summer camp, I felt like I wasContinue reading “Out of the classroom and into the woods”

Hiking: A History Lesson

My roots as a history nerd run deep, probably from the time my mom began reading me the Little House series, when I was a child. Because my parents’ idea of a vacation often involved sailing or cross-country skiing, we saw a lot of Michigan, and often our destinations had historical significance, such as theContinue reading “Hiking: A History Lesson”

From Car Camper to Backpacker: A Cheapskate’s Evolution of Gear

From the moment in 2016 that one of my adventure-prone friends suggested we do 100 miles on the Appalachian Trail the following summer, to the time of the hike in July of 2017, and to the present, my gear has undergone a transformation that I imagine many backpackers experience. I began with the mindset ofContinue reading “From Car Camper to Backpacker: A Cheapskate’s Evolution of Gear”

Michigan DNR Rustic Cabins: An alternative to cold weather camping

Rustic cabins at various state parks can be a great way to enjoy the great outdoors during the cold weather months without the expense of winter gear, or the challenge of staying warm in camp when daylight ends at 5:00 p.m. and temperatures plummet. While I do winter camp on occasion, I love staying inContinue reading “Michigan DNR Rustic Cabins: An alternative to cold weather camping”

Backpacking Anxiety: Addressing Fear

I’m afraid of: Getting hurt. Animals. My gear not working properly. Discovering that I don’t know how to work my gear properly. Forgetting something. Getting lost. Creepy people. Being cold. And the list goes on–people’s fears of what might happen on a backpacking trip are numerous and varied, especially when you’re new to this hobby. Continue reading “Backpacking Anxiety: Addressing Fear”