January 29, 2020

Top Hikes in France

THe rugged mountain peaks of the French Alps.

France's varied and beautiful terrain makes it hard to pick only a handful of hikes to highlight. From the sun-soaked French Riviera and the rugged French Alps to the rolling hills and meadows of the central provinces and the sheer, white-chalk cliffs of Normandy, the opportunity for exploration is practically endless. Add the country's history, […]

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January 29, 2020

Ellen Stekert: Trailblazer

Co-op Member Ellen Stekert

One summer in the 1960s, Ellen Stekert planned a backpacking trip with a friend. Then an English professor in her 30s working in Detroit, she had little backcountry experience, but she sought to hike the entire 40 miles of the Greenstone Ridge, which traverses Michigan’s Isle Royale from end to end. And she needed gear. […]

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January 29, 2020

Pioneering a New Way to Pay for Trail Building in Rural America

Two mountain bikers ride a trail in Athens, Ohio

Athens County in Southeastern Ohio could very well become Appalachia’s next mountain biking hub. At the heart of that potential lies the Baileys Mountain Bike Trail System, a proposed 88-mile network of singletrack that will weave through 9,000 acres of the Wayne National Forest. Few public roads bisect the Baileys tract, so for trail builders, […]

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January 23, 2020

Uncommon Challenge: Sleep (Well) In a Bivy Sack

Uncommon Challenge: Sleep in a Bivy

’ve been prostrate on the ground now for more than an hour. Outside my nylon fortress, the rain is relentless, coming down cold and steady, pelting my bivy. Inside, it’s cozy and comfortable, and I’m warm in my sleeping bag. But, with only enough room to lie flat and the top of my shelter no […]

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January 23, 2020

Camp Recipe: Tie-Dye Fruit Leathers

Tie-dye fruit leathers, packaged and ready for the trail

A tropical swirl of color and flavor, this homemade strawberry-mango fruit leather is a healthier version of the popular '90s snack. During the winter, when the weather is dark and gloomy, we find ourselves craving a taste of summer. Something bright, light and sunny to remind us of warmer times! So a few years ago […]

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January 22, 2020

These Plant-Based Meat Camp Recipes Taste Like the Real Deal

An adult and child smile while eating at a picnic table at camp.

Plant-based meat has slowly been making its way into the mainstream, thanks to successful efforts to engineer new products that taste like meat. It’s showing up in fast-food joints, Michelin-starred restaurants and even your local grocery store, which is where we step in. We wondered how we could bring the meatless trend into the outdoors […]

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January 16, 2020

How to Plan A Trip to Kilimanjaro

There’s no way around it—hiking Kilimanjaro is tough. Sure, it’s a non-technical summit, meaning you don’t need any technical mountaineering experience or special equipment to top out, and you’ll have porters to carry some of your gear and a guide to lead the way (more on this later), but you'll need to be prepared for […]

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January 15, 2020

Winter Camping Advice: We Learned the Hard Way

A group of trekkers wander through a white winter landscape.

Snow-covered landscapes, early nights and crisp mornings, a stillness impossible to describe—if you haven’t tried winter camping, you probably should. Without the swarms of mosquitoes and crowds of campers, you can experience all of the majesty of the outdoors minus the usual hassles. But we won’t lie—if you don’t know what you’re doing, the experience […]

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January 10, 2020

Backpacking Recipes: Red Lentil Marinara

Red lentil marinara sauce and pasta noodles in pan

This vegetarian red lentil marinara sauce is a great way to bump up your protein while enjoying a big comforting bowl of pasta. While our overall calorie count is important while backpacking, we also want to make sure we’re getting those calories from the right places too. After a long, tiring day out on the […]

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