How to Spot Poison Ivy, Oak & Sumac

Posted by RYLEE STOULIL

How to Spot Poison Ivy, Oak & Sumac

There's nothing worse than the most amazing hike you've ever been on ending with a giant poison ivy rash. Nothing. Worse. So I put my Girl Scout cap back on, and I compiled the ultimate guide to avoiding poisonous plants in the first place. Some quick basics - there's three common plants to watch out for: poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac. They all share the same irritant, which is an oily sap called urushiol. Just one nanogram can cause a reaction, and it coats all parts of these plants. So, here's what to look for. Poison Ivy Think,...

The Night We Spent at Zion Wright Family Camp

Posted by RYLEE STOULIL

The Night We Spent at Zion Wright Family Camp

The site is described as a "best kept secret," and holy cow - it really is. We originally booked the site because it's so close to Zion... but we never actually made it to the park. We just couldn't tear ourselves away from the beauty and stillness of the campsite. Not sure what the bigger surprise was - the hundreds of thousands of wildflowers, or the fact that we were the only ones there. "My favorite part was how it seemed like a place you would want to spend the summer as a kid. Tons of wide open space, a...

6 Camping Desserts That Aren't S'mores

Posted by RYLEE STOULIL

6 Camping Desserts That Aren't S'mores

I love a good s'more. Chocolate with a gooey marshmallow - it's a classic. But sometimes when I'm camping, I want to change it up. I'm always on the lookout for s'more dessert options, ya know? Here are some of my favorite sweet tooth cures that aren't your classic s'more. 1. Campfire Cones Basically an ice cream sundae without the ice cream. Grab some waffle cones, and fill them with all of the goodies your heart desires. Go classic with chocolate chips and marshmallows, and get creative with strawberries and Nutella and bananas and nuts. Put it all in your...

5 Myths About the Outdoors

Posted by RYLEE STOULIL

5 Myths About the Outdoors

Legends and stories passed down through generations have lead us to believe some pretty wild things. I mean, I take everything my mom says as the 100% truth, so heck yeah, I believed eating carrots would give you x-ray vision. I, sadly, learned that this is not true, along with these five outdoor myths. MYTH: It's a-okay to leave orange peels on the ground outside. Yes, fruit peels/cores are biodegradable. No, you can't leave them wherever you please. If they aren't native to that ecosystem, then they're harmful to the wildlife in that area. Just pop it back in your...

Tips & Tricks for Eating Outside

Posted by KERRI ANNE STEBBINS

Tips & Tricks for Eating Outside

When it comes to eating outside, there’s often an inherent romanticism sitting at the proverbial table. After all, what could be better than a tasty picnic lunch or dinner in a beautiful outdoor space? In reality, though, those FOMO-inducing Instagram photos often omit plenty of messy details that go hand-in-hand with cooking and eating outside. Details like: What’s the best way to pack your meal(s) (and corresponding cooking gear) into the backcountry? How do you keep bugs and critters at bay? Is your cooking setup sustainable and as low impact as it can be? How do you keep cleanup from...

Everything You Need to Know About Campfires

Posted by RYLEE STOULIL

Everything You Need to Know About Campfires

Camping is one of our favorite activities. There's nothing better than sitting around a fire, roasting marshmallows with friends and family. But it's super important to know the right way to start and put out a campfire to avoid disaster. Starting a Fire Step 1: Find a good place for it. You'll want to use a fire ring or a grill. If you can't find one of those, make your own ring with rocks. Just make sure that there aren't any low-hanging branches nearby that could easily start on fire. Once your find a good spot, clear away anything that...

Let's Keep it Wild(life)

Posted by BROOKE EWING

Let's Keep it Wild(life)

There is nothing more exciting than a wildlife sighting in the actual wild. It beats the zoo by like 1000. We search out places where we might gain access to some of these animals in their natural habitats, or sometimes our meeting them is chance and unexpected. But there is a reason the term is WILDlife. Don't ruin the moment by being "that guy." You the one - the guy who tries to take a selfie with a bison, or pick up a rattlesnake, or collect all the starfish from the beach and take them home where they dry up...

Camping Supplies You Can't Leave Home Without

Posted by MIKAELA RULAND

Camping Supplies You Can't Leave Home Without

When it comes to camping, like any niche activity, people have capital “O” opinions. Whether you’re a seasoned camper or a newbie, it can be overwhelming to hear them all. From where the best places to pitch a tent are, to what the best stove is, to the perfect method of building a campfire, you’ll find advice right and left.  I’ve come to realize though, in my years of camping, that it’s a very personal thing. My parents show up with the car packed to the gills, everything from a washing station to a tent that could fit a small...

5 Easy & Awesome Camping Meals

Posted by KERRI ANNE STEBBINS

5 Easy & Awesome Camping Meals

I have good news: Eating on the road, in the woods, or out of your backpack doesn’t have to be a costly or cumbersome endeavor.  Here are five simple and sustaining meals you can make on your next summer adventure: 1. Meat, Veggie, & Potato Hash — Slice and cook your potatoes in some olive oil (and garlic, if you’re into garlic like I am) first before adding your preferred meat (proteins like pre-cooked chicken apple sausage or turkey kielbasa work well), and your veggies (I typically use peppers and onions, but you could add any variety of veggies you...

Tips for Preventing Wildfires

Posted by KERRI ANNE STEBBINS

Tips for Preventing Wildfires

Starlit nights with friends and family around a campfire, telling stories, roasting marshmallows, enjoying time outside with people we love—few scenes are more iconic in our collective outdoor psyche, and with good reason; even the Smithsonian recognizes the role campfires may have played in historic human cultural development and evolutionary cognition. With those friendly fires, however, comes danger, especially in arid regions and as our climate continues to change. We’ve all seen the destruction and devastation wrought by wildfires roaring across the West in recent years, and while naturally-occurring wildfires are part of a healthy forest’s life cycle, here are...

Camping with Kids

Posted by BROOKE EWING

Camping with Kids

So, you like camping. And you like kids. You still might not like camping with kids……..  While I'm (mostly) kidding, there are things that can make it more or less fun. Camping with kids involves a lot, I mean A LOT of planning and preparation! Don't let that deter you, going camping with my kids has provided some of the most memorable experiences for our family. Through trial and error, I have learned a few things make a huge difference in the success of the trip. Activities!  Even though in a perfect world, my kids would be out mediating in...

Please sir, can I have S'more?

Posted by BROOKE EWING

Please sir, can I have S'more?

Summer means s'mores around our house. Lots of them! Here is a list of some of our favorite variations and not so variations. 1. Classic S'more Not a lot needs to be said here, some melty chocolate on a graham cracker with a perfectly browned marshmallow. It's as American as apple pie.   2. Candy Bar S'more For a fun twist, swap the chocolate bar for your favorite candy bar, we used Reese's peanut butter cups because peanut butter and chocolate are MFEO. (google it)  3. ChocChipCookie S'more Turns out, they're not just for dipping in milk and watching the after...

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