Sometimes you come across a website that really blows your mind.
Either the content is fantastic, the look and feel is pleasing to the eye, or the features on the website make it incredibly user friendly. These 5 camping websites will blow your mind – for one, or all, of these reasons.
FOR THE WHISTLER, BC ENTHUSIAST
Website: Whistler Hiatus
Whistler, a Canadian resort town in the Coastal Mountains in the province of British Columbia, is a 75-minute drive from Vancouver, BC on the Sea-to-Sky Highway and is filled with pristine wilderness areas that will blow the mind of every camping enthusiast! Although Whistler is best known for hosting the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, the location is attractive to outdoor enthusiasts in every season. Whistler is surrounded by an immense wilderness dotted with spectacular hidden lakes and amazing places to set up a tent. The Whistler Hiatus website will blow your mind for two reasons: you can find exceptional maps that detail the plethora of hiking trails, and you can find camping locations that are not only pristine but free as well! There is a network of forest service roads that provide relatively easy access to remote camp-sites, although some of the roads require a 4×4, while others require a little hiking or even a short boat ride. Enjoy exploring!
FOR THE U.S. NATIONAL PARKS ENTHUSIAST
Website: National Park Service
If you’re interested in camping in the United States, then this location will blow your mind. The Olympic National Park is located in the Olympic Peninsula in the state of Washington. The park covers all terrains—a rugged, sandy beach coastline along the Pacific that has unbroken stretches of wilderness; alpine areas below peaks boasting massive ancient glaciers; a temperate rain forest to the west dominated by gigantic Sitka Spruce trees decorated with long , draping tendrils of moss; and a drier old-growth forest in the east. Camping in the park is for die-hard campers—there’s no glamping here as showers are not available and many campsites are not equipped with water or electrical hook-ups. Most campgrounds in the park are first-come, first-served (except for Kalaloch), and payment is by cash or check only. The website is comprehensive, thorough, easy to navigate and provides a plethora of information and photographs that will blow your mind while you plan your next outdoor adventure.
FOR THE FAIR WEATHER MOUNTAIN ENTHUSIAST
Website: Mountain Forecast
There’s nothing wrong with wanting good weather for your outdoor mountain adventure and then basing your decision about your location on the best weather forecast. The Mountain Forecast website will blow your mind because of its accuracy. The site uses highly effective weather algorithms to make their astonishingly accurate predictions. (Keep safety in mind; weather can be unpredictable and can change rapidly in mountain locations.) When you sign into this site, it uses your IP address to determine your location and then suggests the ten closest peaks; however, you have the option of expanding your search if you’re planning a trip further abroad. The site has tabs for “Mountains of Canada” and for “Mountain peaks in the world”, and the maps are either animated or static, and cover more than 1230 global regions. Additionally, the site offers the latest news from people who are actually hiking these peaks. Combined, all this stellar, usable, accurate information truly will blow your mind!
FOR THE FAMILY CAMPING ENTHUSIAST
Website: Adventure Parents
Any outdoor enthusiast who is also a parent will know that, once the kids come along, the outdoor adventures, although they continue, change—sometimes drastically. The Adventure Parents website is for parents who don’t want to forego all those amazing outdoor adventures they had before they became parents. This site will blow your mind because it is a fabulous source for “celebrating the amusing, yet frequently trying, lifestyle of being a parent who’s doing what they can to raise outdoor-loving kids, and to hold on tight to the joys of outdoor adventures.” The site also recommends gear, provides food and recipes, a collection of fun family anecdotes, daily links to great gear deals, and some spectacular and stunning photos. It also has some great blogs featuring topics such as “Off-road driving explained: and why it’s fun for the family.” If becoming a parent hasn’t already blown your mind, then the information and the I-can-relate-to-that moments on this site will.
FOR THE SHOPOHOLIC CAMPING ENTHUSIAST
For this topic, we’re providing a few links, depending on your location. What blows the mind for a true shopaholic is being able to find exactly what you need, at a great price, on an easy-to-navigate website.
Camping Shopaholics in Canada
Website: Mountain Equipment Co-op
Many Canadians exclusively buy their gear at Mountain Equipment Co-op, known locally as MEC. The prices are good, the quality is superb, the selection is extensive, and the reputation of the company is stellar. In 2012, MEC released an iPhone app that makes it possible to buy a membership share and shop for products on your cellphone. MEC is a co-op that formed in 1971 with six members; forty years later, this cooperative enterprise is thriving with nearly 10% of the population of Canada as members. MEC demonstrates the best of what business can be in our society. Your online experience will be highly satisfying: the website is navigable, and if you sign up for their newsletter, you get advance notice of sales. MEC is all about sustainability. They strive to make great products that lessen their impact on the environment and improve peoples’ lives. And, if you can go in person, you’ll discover that the management invests in educating their staff—outdoor enthusiasts each and every one—in order to give provide the customer with the knowledge and expertise when making decisions about the right gear. In-person or on the web, MEC will blow your mind!
Camping Shopaholics in the USA
Website: Paragon Sports
Paragon Sports, which opened in 1908, is a one-stop shop that covers all of your sporting gear needs, and is recommended in Men’s Journal as one of the best gear stores in North America. The site has A-Z links according to activity, easy-to-navigate pages for footwear, clothing and brands, it’s well organized and easy to read, and the products are innovative and technologically advanced. The other great thing about online shopping at Paragon Sports is that you won’t need to find a parking spot in New York City!
In the spirit of FUN for camping shopaholics everywhere!
This site has a collection of camping slogan T-shirts and hoodies for those of you who like saying it loud and proud. Choose from a selection of clever and corny catchwords and phrases that are boldly printed on T-shirts and sweatshirts and range in price from $20 to $35. Slogans such as “I don’t need therapy, I just need to go camping,” or “OCD-Obsessive Camping Disorder.” These can make great gifts for the camping enthusiast in your life. Generate more FUN and laughter with your circle of camping enthusiasts by wearing a slogan that reads, “What happens in the Camper, Stays in the Camper”.
Regardless of what site you visit, we know that these sites will blow your mind!
Do you have a camping website that’s worth adding to this list? Leave your comments below or join the discussion on our Facebook page!