by Brandy D. Anderson
Summer time is upon us and you know what that means? It means camping, travelling, exploring the outdoors, and soaking up as much nature as possible before the cold weather creeps back in! Some of us are experienced outdoors people, some of us want to be, but need help, and some of us just wonder what the fuss is all about – well, whatever your level of outdoors knowledge is, you’re sure to find some very useful advise and tips in the three accounts below! So get your marshmallows, graham crackers, and chocolates ready, here we go:
About: “Cool people like you & me go camping and RVing. We help you find awesome places to camp, park, play & explore!”
Camping Road Trip is an awesome site for campers and road trippers because it’s a forum for everyone to share their experiences about where – and where not – to go. This Twitter account is active and constantly sharing posts. They have a website where you can pop any city or state into a search box and find over 19,000 campgrounds, RV parks, and RV resorts across the United States. You can also write and read reviews. They have a “What’s New” feature on the front page that tells you about “interesting things to do and people to meet”. There’s another section right there where you can see the latest reviews left by travellers. They run a monthly “Outdoor Living” newspaper that you can subscribe to and find quick links to articles that appeal to you.
“Interesting Links to Explore”, “RV and Camping Products and Resources”, “RV and Camping Associations and Clubs”, and “RV and Camping Lifestyle Resources” are a few more services they provide on their website. There are quick tabs at the top so you can find campgrounds, you can read tips and articles related to camping, you can search campground operators, and you can even download a camp finder app. On the Twitter account, you’ll find many useful links and maps. One recent tweet asks, “How’s your summer road trip looking like so far? Find parks & campgrounds on campingroadtrip.com or just take our Camp Finder app with you!” There’s a fun map included with pinpoints of places followers have camped and recommend.
They share photos from campers, and some of them are rather surprising, like a recent one from May 29th depicting a very snowy, wintery scene in Colorado: “Full-timers @tinlow78 woke up like this today in Estes Park, CO – May snow! How’s your #camping or #Rving weather looking like? ow.ly\nqUu50urZCb”. There are useful tips for stopping for the night whilst on the road: “What’s your M.O. to level & stabilize your rig at camp? Here’s a few tips of our own: ow.ly/zpfK50urYOQ”. Another question posed: “A topic that came up this weekend at camp… what’s your tent camping bed setup? ow.ly/tsZZ5)uqBS9 (*We just use a good pad & sleeping bag, some folks use 2 or 3 pads & other stuff) #camping #campingtips #camplife #tentcamping”. Camping Road Trip tweets often, usually several times a day.
About: “Camping is the only magazine in the UK dedicated to life under canvas. Send your reviews, pics & camping tales to firstname.lastname@example.org”
Camping Magazine has you covered if you’re wanting to explore the great outdoors throughout the United Kingdom. They have an accompanying website that is chock full of information, although the home page is a little overwhelming with its vast number of links and colours. Still, you can certainly find pretty much anything you could ever hope to search for here. At the top you’ll find links for outdoors news, articles, reviews, TV recommendations, a trader directory, events around the UK, sales listings, a store link, forums, clubs, a list of continental campsites, and an about section. There are quick links for motorhomes/RVs, caravans, park homes and holiday homes, campsites, shows, and “glamping camping”.
You can sign up for email newsletters if you like, and you can register with the site to use the forums, leave reviews, or even list any outdoors products or vehicles you want to sell. If you scroll down a bit, you’ll find more tabs for “Camping News”, “Camping Articles”, “Camping Reviews”, “Competitions”, “Trader Directory”, and a “UK Campsite Finder”. There are articles on various outdoors topics. At the very bottom of the website’s home page you’ll find a whole plethora of links, way too many to list here, so the odds are certainly in your favour that you’ll be able to find any information you need. Although their website is so prolific, you’ll still want to follow their Twitter account because they post a lot of useful and up-to-date events and topics, and many are retweets from followers and other campers.
For instance, this morning they’ve posted an invitation to a camping gathering: “Join in with the ‘100 Years of the Caravan’ celebrations this week: in association with @CampAndCaravan. No Caravan? No problem. Our tent offers a pretty good disguise, don’t you think?!” Here’s a useful tutorial they retweeted from Tranquil Parks: “Do you struggle to get your tent back into its bag? Learn how to pack like a pro with @Campingmagazine’s ultimate guide: ow.ly/pEix30oQyTW”. Another retweet comes from Blackthorn Farm, and there’s a gorgeous camping photo taken from inside a tent with this comment: “’There is a whole world out there so pack your backpack, your best friend, and go.’ Love this photo from a guest this weekend. We’re #dogfriendly so you can bring your #bestfriend on #holiday with you!” Camping Magazine posts most days, but there are occasional lapse of a few days at a time. However, there is a ton of content and they never stay away for long.
About: “Outdoor women adventurers sharing information, articles, guides, travel and adventure reviews, tips, techniques, publications, videos and useful resources.”
Camping For Women is an amazing resource for outdoors-women that I wish was more well known. While many women love the outdoors, they are often underrepresented in advertising and resource materials. Camping For Women’s aesthetically pleasing and informative website begins with this message: “Welcome to Camping for Women: a one-stop online resource for women who love the wonderful outdoors! Whether you are a camping newbie or seasoned veteran-of-the-hills, there is something here for everyone. Camping for Women is a resource created by women, and for women, which proves girls have just as much fun in the woods as boys. This site provides women all around the globe with free informative articles, tips, trends, recipes, newsletters, videos, and much more to enhance their outdoor experience.”
The website is headed by the following tabs: “About”, “Articles”, “Blog”, “Contact”, “Contributors”, “Publications”, “Resources”, “Reviews”, “Sharing”, “Shopping”, and “Travel”. The articles are “written by women adventurers on everything from camping to hiking, fishing to RVs, children to cooking, and everything inbetween”. There is a professional licensed clinical psychotherapist and columnist, Natalie McCarthy, who takes any questions you want to ask on the great outdoors and she’ll provide thoughtful answers. The neat thing about this is that she’ll provide a direct answer to the person who poses the question, but then she also provides a weekly video where she anonymously shares the questions so others can hear the questions and answers, too.
Now, you may be wondering what the Twitter account can hold that isn’t found on their sleek website. Well, let me tell you, their Twitter page is full of interesting, useful, and sometimes quirky links to articles, news items, and photos pertaining to travel and the outdoors. One recent post shares a link for butterfly photography. Another provides a story on “Chernobyl: the Wildlife Haven Created When People Left: Rare and endangered animals have thrived in the Chernobyl disaster zone since it was evacuated in 1986…”. There’s an article that shows “stunning photos from a new book, ‘Abandoned Sacred Places’, from Mexico to Vietnam, the globe is filled with such spots.” You’ll also find practical advice, like how to spot “10 travel scams – and how to avoid them.” Camping For Women posts numerous times every day.