Finding backyard adventure: car camping near home

Mappy Hour_SNBC Logo 2

Thank you Mappy Hour Cleveland member Jennifer Darling for sharing your recent trip with us. Thanks to Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. for supporting the Mappy Hour athlete program and helping more folks get outdoors this summer.

Many of my trips are epic and grand. They’re often filled with great accomplishments and marvelous sites from rock climbing in Eleven Mile Canyon to mountain biking in Moab to hiking 40 miles in 2.5 days in Oil Creek.

For my latest adventure and in the spirit of Mappy Hour, I decided to keep things wholesome and local. It is easy to find nature and that sense of serenity close to home if you try. Last weekend, I only had to venture 4 miles from my house to find this peace and reconnection to nature that I was yearning for.

Spending a Night Outdoors

A good friend of mine has a piece of property with several acres of farmland with open fields as far as I can see. I walked this land, exploring and observing. I even captured some of the creatures and admired the plant life along the way.

There was so much life that was tucked away to find when I slowed down and actually looked. Nestled on this farmstead is a picturesque pond that is home to more frogs than I can count. I could hear the “thump-thump” of the bullfrogs as I situated myself with the Jeep. I decided tonight, I would try car camping to make it even easier to spend the night outdoors.

Drinking a beer while car camping

After a bit of exploring, I just wanted to relax and, of course, enjoy a beer. While I sipped my beer, a deer snorted and huffed at me from across the pond. Their warning sounds made me feel that much more connected to nature. I was becoming a part of the landscape. They peered at me cautiously through the tall shoots of hay. Listening to all my movements and keeping a healthy distance.

While the sun slowly crept down on the horizon, I could hear the yips and howls of the coyotes as they were getting ready to start their night. I could faintly hear the hoots of a barred owl in the distance. I watched as the sky turned from a robin’s egg blue to the watercolor stream of cotton candy, pinks and purples. The crickets began their chorus as the stars started to wake up in the night sky.

I enjoyed these moments from the back of my rig as I started to get my dinner boiling and settling in for the night.

Cheers, nature. Keep doing you.

New on the Blog