Camping Gear

How to Have More Fun and Be Safer Outdoors

Posted On May 13, 2016 at 10:19 am by / Comments Off on How to Have More Fun and Be Safer Outdoors

By Michael Lanza

People occasionally ask me the same basic question about hiking, backpacking, or some other outdoor activity: How much do I need to know to do this? They ask that question, of course, because they want to keep themselves and their family or friends safe. And you can find the answers to questions like that—and probably many others that you have—in one place.

At The Big Outside, some of my most-read stories are the ones in which I offer my tips on skills like ultralight backpacking, avoiding blisters, getting a hard-to-get national park backcountry permit, and taking better outdoor photos. Readers also frequently find my “10 Rules of Adventure Travel” and “10 Tips For Keeping Kids Happy and Safe Outdoors.”

My “10 Tips For Raising Outdoors-Loving Kids” may be the most enduringly popular story at this blog, and my more-recent follow-up to that story, “10 Tips For Getting Your Teenager Outdoors With You,” has gained a similar following.

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I’ve organized all of my stories about outdoor skills on my Skills page, where you can click to find not only answers to many of your questions, but maybe also learn which questions to ask. See also my Ask Me page, where you’ll find sub-pages, organized by subject, listing the many blog posts in which I answer questions directly from readers, including an Ask Me page of questions about various outdoor skills.

I’ve learned a thing or two from 30+ years of getting out there and 20+ years as an outdoor writer; my background motivated the creation of this website and blog. These days, whenever I’m out backpacking or taking an ultra-hike, or on a big adventure with my family, I’m always thinking about how to do it as safely as possible and how to make it as fun as I can.


I’d certainly appreciate your suggestions for new skills stories I could write for my blog—especially topics that would have broad interest to other readers. Please feel free to write to me at Or simply tell me what you think of my blog by commenting below or at my About page.

I always appreciate hearing from readers of The Big Outside.

Do you like The Big Outside? I’m Michael Lanza, the creator of The Big Outside, recognized as a top outdoors blog by a USA Today Readers Choice poll and others. Subscribe for updates about new stories and free gear giveaways by entering your email address in the box at the bottom of this story, at the top of the left sidebar, or on my About page, and follow my adventures on Facebook and Twitter.

This blog and website is my full-time job and I rely on the support of readers. If you like what you see here, please help me continue producing The Big Outside by making a donation using the Support button at the top of the left sidebar or below. Thank you for your support.


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