It’s out with the old and in with the new, as people are beginning to trade in familiar trail reviews for comprehensive, outdoor itineraries.
Until now, outdoor enthusiasts have looked at trail information as their main source of planning an adventure. Unfortunately, info on a single trail isn’t helpful to a hiker looking for something more specific to do on their journey. Luckily, someone had an idea. What if instead of trail advice, there were actual full itineraries? After all, people use itineraries to travel abroad, so why can’t they use them for trips outdoors.
Outdoor Project uses crowdsourcing to find the best outdoor itineraries for diverse explorers. This site allows you to filter your interests by the adventure type, location, or by educational content. Here are a few interesting itineraries to get an idea of what the internet has in store for you:
Three Days in Yosemite
Day One: Sleep at Bridalveil Creek Campground. You’ll be close enough to get a head start at South Rim the next morning. Catch the sunrise at Glacier Point, where you’ll get an incredible view of Half Dome. Continue on Glacier Point Road, and choose to hike either to Sentinel Dome, Taft Point, or both. End the day at Yosemite Valley, getting a look at Tunnel View. Spend the night at the Upper Pines Campsite.
Day Two: This is your day to explore the Yosemite Valley. Do it by bike or just by foot, but whatever you do, take your time admiring the scenery around you; however long that may take. Visit Yosemite Falls and take a hike up to the top, preferably via the Giant Staircase Loop. You can also do the easy hike to Vernal Falls, if you don’t want to overexert yourself. Try to check out Olmstead Point before sundown, and make it to Tuolumne Meadows Campground before dark.
Day Three: You’ll spend it in Tuolumne Meadows. A great hike here is the Cathedral Lakes Trail, part of the John Muir Trail. It leads to the Cathedral Lakes where you can have a swim. You can also just wander the area taking the shorter trails, if you want to take it easy. As the afternoon approaches, wander back to Tenaya Lake to see the beautiful landscape.
The Swimming Holes of Colorado
If you’re looking to cool off in one of America’s most outdoorsy states, then there’s no need to spend time figuring out where all the secret gems are. The original itinerary features 12 swimming holes, but here are the five we think are best.
Devil’s Punchbowl: Devil’s Punchbowl is one of the most visited swimming holes in the state, as it’s gotten quite a reputation for it’s “architecture.” It might be rather daring to jump in here, but you won’t hesitate with the weather being as hot as it is.
The North Fork of the South Platte River: If you enjoy swimming in the river (who doesn’t?) then you’ll want to go to this spot about an hour southwest of Denver. There are many entry points into the river for a swim, and you can easily spend the whole day here.
Paradise Cove: High cliffs and good swimming. Just be careful!
Cache la Poudre River: A little area to go for a float in Fort Collins.
Boulder Creek at Eben G. Fine Park: A perfect swimming and floating destination in Boulder.
A Photo Adventure of Utah
How many amazing photos have you seen of the beauty that is America, but haven’t been able to quite pinpoint those spots? These itineraries aren’t only for hikers, but for people who appreciate the outdoors in all kinds of ways; like photography. Someone has given us the down-low on the most photogenic spots in the Utah, and here they are.
Days 1-3: Take on Zion National Park. Make your way up Angel’s Landing. See the Emerald Pools, The Narrows, and the Lower Subway. There isn’t one thing you won’t want to take a picture of.
Days 4-5: Try the North Guardian Angel Climb and the Bryce Canyon Rim Trail to catch the sunset at Bryce Point.
Days 6-7: Drive to Capitol Reef. Explore the Navajo Knobs, Chimney Rock, and Cohab Canyon. The views are spectacular and your camera will thank you!
Create Your Own Outdoor Itinerary
The whole point of crowdsourcing is to encourage people to share their own experiences. Think about it. Would you rather go somewhere off of a friend’s recommendation, or would you go off what a guide book said? Hearing advice from other people who have been to these places really helps you to make the most of your time outdoors. And, let’s be honest. We don’t all have as much time as we would like.
In addition to reading other people’s itineraries, don’t hesitate to share yours with the world. You never know who you could be helping. Do you have any cool adventure itineraries? Let us know in the comments.