Women

DNK Presents Ambassador Lauren Fields
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Welcome DNK Presents Adventure Ambassador Lauren Fields!

DNK Presents just launched the first Adventure Ambassador Program for people like you who are interested in building a community for more women, or gender neutral individuals to get outside and be empowered by the great outdoors. There is a vast gender gap of men vs. women but fortunately that gap is decreasing because of more organizations that are providing a safe space for women to feel comfortable and confidence outside. Ambassadors will build the outdoor community in their area by leading free open to the public hikes, bike rides, rock climbing, paddling, yoga or meditation experiences, and sharing events, and posts via social media. If you’re interested in building the outdoor movement in your area please contact us!

Welcome to the DNK Presents Ambassador Team Lauren Fields! Read on to learn about Lauren!

Who are you?

What is your name, where do you live. What do you do for a living?

My name is Lauren Fields and I live in northeast Indy. More specifically, it’s a plot of woods along Mud Creek between Castleton, Geist, and Fishers.

I work as a Content Marketer and do some light graphic design and photography. And I get to do it all from home, in the woods! I specifically work in the food industry, so most of my writing and photography are for recipes and cooking tips. I’m also freelancing to expand the types of projects I get to work on.

How has the outdoors impacted your life? Why do you believe it can do the same for others?

I’m my happiest self when I’m outside. Even more if I’ve just done something that makes me feel badass. I like to set adventure goals each year to keep adding to my experiences and expand what I’m comfortable with.

Being outside is like therapy for me. The fresh air helps me remember to breathe more deeply. It’s a reminder that I’m part of something bigger than myself, which helps pull me out of my head and evaluate my concerns more clearly. Being outside helps me remember that it’s just as important as an adult to allow freedom to play and daydream. I think a lot of my anxiety and stress comes at times that I’ve neglected my need to step away from to-do lists and just explore.

I think it’s common to feel overwhelmed with what is demanded of us every day. To spend time outside, especially with others, is a way of maintaining sense of self and direction among everything that’s going on.

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Could you share a story about the outdoors that has taught you something about yourself?

I’ve always wanted to do a solo backpacking trip, which I finally did this summer. I went to a place I’m familiar with – Red River Gorge – to ease my nerves of going alone. I had a terrible run-in with a forest officer on Courthouse Rock who saw my gear and thought I was camping there. I was only taking in the view before continuing on the trail to set up camp in the woods, at a legal camping spot. His verbal aggression and the fact that he wrote me a warning for something I wasn’t even doing really just had me frazzled. My solo backpacking was off to a terrible start. But I was encouraged by some friendly hikers who I made quick friends with, and their understanding helped me pull myself together.

By the time I was setting up camp it started raining. I was planning on trying my new wood burning stove, but I didn’t have any kind of fire starter and all the wood was wet. I was so hungry and my clothes were all wet, and all I wanted to do was give up and go to Miguel’s for some pizza. My irrational nighttime fears were setting in, and since I was having no luck with the fire, I walked back towards the trail to see what was making the noises I was hearing. I found some camp neighbors who were starting a fire, and when I asked what their secret was, they generously shared their fire starter with me. So I was able to cook my minute rice with shiitake mushrooms and had a warm meal after all.

The next morning I woke up to the sound of distant thunder around 5 am. I was planning to be back on the trail by 7 to beat the storm (which I was expecting thanks to the weather app), but it sounded like it was coming much sooner than expected. I didn’t like the thought of waiting it out in my tent, and I also didn’t like the though of it pouring down before I finished packing up. So I packed up camp faster and sloppier than ever. It was still dark and I was having a hard time finding my way back to the trail, but when I finally did, it felt like a major victory. But since it was still dark I was concerned about spooking a bear. It wasn’t until the sun started to rise over the gorge and the clouds had moved onward that I was able to shift my thoughts from fear of the unknown and instead to the excitement of starting a day this way.

I learned that my inner voice can be the most irrational when I feel unprepared. I may be quick to feel defeated, but to accept defeat means I would be missing out on the whole experience. Each moment where I felt defeated was followed by something up-lifting. I remember this story when I’m feeling defeated because it reminds me to shift my perspective and look for the encouragement.

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What is your first significant memory of the outdoors or nature in some way?

I grew up camping with my family and our friends, 5 families total. I remember being  young and playing in massive puddles on multiple camping trips. I didn’t recognize this importance until recently, but to me now, this represents not giving up on the adventure. Our parents could’ve probably scheduled a rain check each of those times. But maybe it’s more realistic to accept that conditions will only rarely be “perfect” and then we’ll make the most of it.

Why do you feel it is important in today’s society to get outdoors and disconnect from technology?

We live in a world where there is always something demanding our attention. And if we’re not deliberate about what receives our attention, we can easily be robbed of our time. I think this is why it’s so important to disconnect from technology and reconnect with nature. Because nothing is demanded of us outside.

If we open our attention to the way the moss grows on the rocks and the trees, or the way the birds are flying overhead – we are allowing ourselves to take part in the physical world around us.

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dnk presents, live adventurously, wild women, corporate retreats, adventure retreats,What is your favorite outdoor gear?

I mainly kayak, backpack, and I’m new with climbing. Buying specific gear for all 3 activities would cost more than I can spend. So my favorite gear is anything versatile that I can apply to different activities.

For instance, I use my backpacking pack to carry all of my climb gear to the crag. I really like the nice rope bags that are minimal and specific to climbing gear, but my pack is more than enough.

Also though, for one specific splurge, I really love Ice Mule coolers. I have the roll-top 15 Liter which floats behind my kayak or is carried by my significant other when we climb or hike (while I’m carrying the pack). Because I love to pack fresh food, and in the summer, a good trail cooler is where it’s at!

Does unisex or women’s specific gear make a difference for you?

I’m not sure if I have a preference. I think it depends on the item and availability. When I was trying on packs, I only tried on the ones built for women. If none of those had felt right, I would’ve tried a unisex pack. But with my sleeping bags, I bought unisex.

Why do you feels it’s important to get more women specifically outdoors?

I think it’s important for women to be among women. So we can help lift each other up and share our unique experiences together. Some of the burdens that we carry as women feel lighter when they are understood with no explanation. I mean, we have to worry about having enough menstrual products while climbing a mountain! If we have a group of women together, chances are one of us has an extra tampon. That alone is a benefit of getting more women together.

But deeper than that, I think there’s a certain level of empowerment when women are taking on something that has been male dominated for so long. It’s our way of saying We’re Here Too.

dnk presents, live adventurously, wild women, corporate retreats, adventure retreats,

 

Learn more about the Red River Gorge and things to do here: http://www.redrivergorge.com/

We are so excited to have Lauren as a DNK Presents Adventure Ambassador, we hope to see you on an adventure this year!

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DNK Presents Women's Backpacking

Women’s Beginner Backpack Adventure

Get your hiking boots  for this super chill backpacking adventure this summer! This is a beginner backpacking trip perfect for getting a taste for what backpacking is like or dusting off your hiking boots and getting back outdoors if you haven’t been in a while and of course meeting some amazing women! Lead guide Katy Williams will guide you along the Low Gap and Tecumseh trail to the backcountry area, you will set up camp, then hike to Bear Lake and learn about filtering water in the backcountry. You’ll hike back to the backcountry area, make dinner by the campfire that evening and learning more about taking your own backpacking adventure.

Total miles hiked during weekend about 10 miles along the Low Gap and Tecumseh trail.

Backpack food provided Saturday evening and breakfast Sunday morning. You will need to have had breakfast before arriving and pack a sandwich for Saturday afternoon!

DNK Presents can provide on a first come first serve basis:

Tent (shared 2 person)

Backpack 65 liters  ***We are now out of backpacks for this trip

Sleeping Pad

Sleeping Bag

Cookware including fuel

Mess kit

 

Gear list and recommended clothing:

Tent or hammock

Flashlight/headlamp

Extra batteries (for headlamp)

Camp stove, Jet Boil etc.

Pan or pot for cooking

Camp stove fuel

Matches or lighter

“Mess kit” i.e. plate, bowl, fork, spoon, knife

Instant coffee packets or tea if you need this

Snacks/Extra food (standard fruit i.e., apples, oranges are NOT recommended because they are heavy and there is waste, trial mix, granola bars, etc. are better)

Extra clothes, layers (dry fit, wool or technical – cotton is NOT recommended because once it gets wet it stays wet)

Swim Suit (suitable for lake i.e. not your brand new one!)

2 filled water bottles (64 oz. total) or water or hydration bladder filled (2 liters at least)

Whistle

Insect Repellent

Hat

Gators (for shoes – optional)

Trekking poles (optional)

Sunburn Preventative

Bathroom “kit” another zip lock bag, or dark zip lock bag, wipes, hand sanitizer, trowels will be available

Baby wipes or face wipes

Zip lock bags for small items

Large Zip lock bags and/or plastic bags for carrying out your trash

Camp shoes (cheap pair of flip flops to wear when we get to the camp site area)

Hiking boots (highly recommended)

Extra socks

Rain Gear (jacket, poncho, rain pants)

Band-Aids’, other First Aide items you may need (DNK has First Aid Kit)

Personal items

We ask that you carry any medications you may need. Please notify us of any known allergies, medications or medical conditions your guides should be aware of. 

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Rock Climbing, DNK Presents, dnk presents, private group adventures, corporate team building adventures, adventures,

Rock Climbing Outdoor Trip

Have you been rock climbing for a while but have just been in the gym? Are you wanting to take your skills outside but don’t know where to go, what to bring or where to start? We have the perfect weekend for you! Welcome to our weekend outdoor rock climbing adventure trip to the Red River Gorge in Slade Kentucky. You will be with guides, Chelsea Willis and Ali Solomon going to entire new area of the Gorge, I’ll give you a hint, it’s beautiful, challenging, and you will go through a tunnel to get there. 

Camping is included both Friday and Saturday night at Miguel’s

Schedule:

Saturday, May 19th

7:30am Leave for North Gorge (wall announced when you sign up)

Climb all day packing in lunches, water, snacks

5-6pm Arrive back at Miguels for Pizza

Sunday May 20th

Hike in the Gorge or half day climbing

*Helmets are included

*Climbing harness, shoes, belay device are NOT included

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Backcountry Women DNK Presents

Wild Women’s Backpacking Overnight

Wild Women’s Backpacking Overnight Along the Beautiful Tecumseh Trail!

Celebrate Earth Day weekend with us along the beautiful Low Gap and the Tecumseh Trail in Morgan-Monroe and Yellowwood State Forest. We’ll learn and practice Leave No Trace ethics, how to prepare meals in the backcountry, filter water, make fire and do it along side our favorite outdoor backcountry women! Grab your boots, your best friends and let us know what equipment you need. We will limit this to a small rad group so sign up today. DNK Presents will provide meals, water filteration systems, trowels, etc. Rental gear is available on a first come first serve basis, if you need/want gear sign up ASAP! 
This is a beginner to intermediate hiking trip. The hike in will be about 6-7 miles, the hike out on Sunday will be about 3-4 miles for a total of 10 miles for the weekend, the terrain is rugged. If you have questions please contact us hello@dnkpresents.com  

Itinerary:

9am meet at the Low Gap Trail parking lot

10am Begin hike into the backcountry along Low Gap/Tecumseh Trail

4pm Arrive at the backcountry area campsite

Make dinner, share stories that evening around the campfire, learn to how to hang food, make fire, hunt bear, whittle swords, etc!

7:30am wake up, make breakfast, stretch!

12pm Arrive back at the parking lot, celebrate!

 

Equipment DNK Presents can provide on a first come first serve basis: 

Backpack

Sleeping Bag

Sleeping Pad

Tent (2 person)

Headlamp

Trowel

Backcountry cookware

*Food is provided for everyone (dinner Saturday, breakfast Sunday, lunch Sunday). All of the backpacking food is vegetarian, we can accommodate for most food allergies if we are notified far enough in advance.

The full gear list for the weekend below.

 

Gear list and recommended clothing:

Tent or hammock (we can also provide)

Flashlight/headlamp

Extra batteries for flashlight/headlamp

Snacks/Extra food

Extra Clothes, Layers (dry fit, wool or technical – cotton is NOT recommended because once it gets wet it stays wet)

2 filled water bottles (Nalgene size 32 oz. at least or 64 oz. total) OR water bladder ***Come with it filled

Whistle

Insect Repellent

Hat

Gators (for shoes – optional)

Trekking poles (optional)

Sunburn Preventative

Hand Sanitizer

Plastic or zip lock baggies for storage of small items

Bathroom “Kit” – zip lock bag, wipes – you may want to duck tape the outside of your waste bag or use a dark bag

Baby wipes or face wipes

Zip lock bags for small items

Camp shoes (cheap pair of flip flops to wear when we get to the camp site area)

Hiking boots (highly recommended)

Extra socks

Rain Gear (jacket, poncho, rain pants) – Always a good idea even if the forecast does not call for it

Band-Aids’, other First Aide items you may need (DNK has First Aid Kit)

Personal items

 
Leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but pictures, kill nothing but time.
 
Please contact Danielle at 812-449-6134 or email danielle@dnkpresents.com with questions
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DNK Presents' Women's Adventure Contest

DNK Presents’ Women’s Adventure Contest Winners Announced

Danielle Wolter Nolan                                                                                                             FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DNK Presents

812-449-6134

www.dnkpresents.com

 

Outdoor adventure company, DNK Presents announces their 2018 Indiana Womens Adventure Contest winners, Myra Ansley, Emily Faurote, Mindy Weaver-Flask, and Rose Tillison. These four women were selected from numerous nominations from across the state of Indiana to win a customized free four-day exclusive backcountry adventure. Founders of DNK Presents, Danielle and Kate Nolan will guide the adventure, taking place May 17-20, 2018 in Indiana. The four contest winners will disconnect from technology, live off the grid, and challenge themselves with new outdoor activities. In addition, a select team of inspiring, leading outdoor women will join the adventure trip as guest facilitators.

“We are beyond excited for our 4 contest winners this year and can’t wait to hit the trails with the ladies this May,” remarks Kate Nolan.

Danielle Wolter Nolan exclaims, “The Women’s Adventure Contest is one of our favorite events; it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity for women to be completely unplugged, try something new, meet other inspiring women, empower themselves, and build confidence through the great outdoors.”

The DNK Presents’ Women’s Adventure Contest is supported by national and local sponsors including, Rusted Moon Outfitters, KEEN, The Bike Line, Trek Bicycle, ENO Hammocks, Alps Mountaineering, Shredly, Bitchstix, Big Woods Brewery, Oakley, Skinny and Company, E.A.T., Central Restaurant Products, Enviro-Max, and more!

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www.dnkpresents.com


DNK Presents organizes and guides empowering adventure experiences for individuals, groups and businesses. They focus on getting people to step outside their comfort zones, trying something for the first time and gain confidence through experiential learning.
 Their adventures include mountain biking, backpacking, rock climbing and yoga retreats in and outside of Indiana.

 

DNK Presents produced and directed the award-winning film, “Live Adventurously” (www.liveadventurouslyfilm.com) that follows the four women who won the inaugural Women’s Adventure Contest in 2016. A feature length documentary film based on the 2017 contest winners is expected to be completed this summer.

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Wild Women’s Hike

Hopefully you are all getting your hiking shoes broken in and muddied up so far this year! Join us for a fun hike in the beautiful Ft. Benjamin Harrison State Park on the east side of Indianapolis. We will hike and explore the awesome trails in the park, give you more information about hiking, camping, and backpacking while getting to know other outdoorsy women in our community. If you are signed up for one of our adventures this year this is a great way to get ready for your trip or learn more about what adventure experiences DNK Presents’ offers. We hope you can join us this April!

9am Meet inside Ft. Ben State Park (exact location given closer to event)

9:15am Hike begins

~11am-ish Hike ends at your vehicle

*There is an entrance fee to get into Ft. Ben State Park $5 for in state residents and $6 for out of state.

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Women’s Spring Thaw Hike

It’s time to dust off your hiking boots! We decided to make our first Spring Thaw event of 2018 a hike to really ease you into the outdoors because we know as a beginner hiker, camper or backpacker it can be a bit intimidating. That’s why our first event will be a leisure 2 hour hike at Eagle Creek Park in Indianapolis. Join us with our trained and experienced backpacking guide, Katy Williams. We will hike and explore the beautiful trails and give you more information about hiking, camping, and backpacking while getting to know other outdoorsy women in our community.

10am Meet at the 56th street entrance, first parking lot on the right, begin introductions

10:15am Hike begins

~12pmish Meet back at your vehicle, we’ll plan to grab lunch afterwards, and you are welcome to join!

*There is an entrance fee to get into Eagle Creek Park $5 for Marion County residents and $6 for non-residents.

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DNK Presents Live Adventurously

Live Adventurously Movie Screening

Looking for an adventure in 2018? See Live Adventurously at Bicycle Garage Indy and be inspired to try something new!

Join Bicycle Garage Indy as we host our first Movie Night! we’ll provide popcorn. View the documentary Live Adventurously and stay after the film for Q&A with film directors Kate Nolan and Danielle Wolter Nolan.

Live Adventurously Documentary Summary:

In 2016 outdoor adventure company, DNK Presents, hosted the inaugural women’s adventure contest in Indiana. In a short time, an overwhelming amount of nominations came in, with unbelievable compelling stories. Four lucky women were chosen to win a four day backcountry adventure guided by, Danielle and Kate of DNK Presents. None of them knew each other, or exactly what was in store for them, but they all left with something much more than they had ever imagined possible.

The next DNK Presents Women’s Adventure Contest is currently accepting applications. Find out more at the movie night!

Registration is required. Attendance limited to 50 people.

RSVP ahead of time here!

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Backcountry Women DNK Presents

The Wild Wild Wilderness

By: Anne McCarty

This October, 13 women and I decided we were going to heighten the bar of our limitations while doing something we love. Our adventure was in the ever beautiful Morgan-Monroe State Forest (http://www.in.gov/dnr/forestry/4816.htm) just outside of Martinsville, Indiana and began in the Low Gap Trail Parking Lot and ended at the Fox Den Shelter at the end of the Tecumseh Trail. We set out on a trip that pushed us physically but relieved us mentally of our day-to-day stress.

Wilderness Women DNK Presents

Teamwork makes the Dream Work

Some of the group were veterans to backpacking while others, including myself, had not been on a trip this rigorous in a while or ever. Even so, everyone motivated and helped each other out when someone was struggling or couldn’t figure something out. At the beginning, most of us were strangers to each other coming from very different backgrounds and even different states, but by the end we were a dynamic and supportive (and also an exhausted) group of individuals ready to take on the world. This adventure was the epitome of having fun while learning especially since we were all wanting to learn for ourselves. For two days we learned about water filtration, leaving no trace behind, the basics of camping, trail reading, how to rehydrate/cook dehydrated food and most importantly about our mutual passion for the outdoors.

Backcountry Women DNK Presents

Disconnect to Reconnect

Going to the backcountry and not having cell service can be a bit daunting but we took every precaution by bringing first aid kits, having emergency contacts, letting the folks at DNR (MorganSF@dnr.IN.gov) know where we would be going and how many of us there were, and staying on the trail. Ultimately the benefits of not being able to check social media or email showed, in joking around, sharing advice to a fellow outdoorswoman, talking about goals and plans in life, the list goes on. Beyond that, you really tune into your mind and body which made conquering this 18-mile hike with 35 pounds on your back more than manageable.

Outdoor Women DNK Presents

Changed for the Better

A lot can happen in two days, and I think I can say for most of the ladies, their goals for going on this adventure with DNK Presents were met. I personally exceeded my own expectations having past injuries, and I couldn’t be prouder. I learned that you don’t need half of what you think you do; to bring a long flowy skirt and baggy shirt for the drive home; to be prepared for allergies you didn’t think you had to show up; always have some sort of measuring tool, to bring at least two large water bottles; that the word “bladder” is used frequently in the backpacking world and you can go further than you think you can.

Backpacking Women DNK Presents

We came. We learned. We conquered this adventure.

Check out the video summary of our wild wilderness adventure below, hope you can join us on adventures in 2018!

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Women's Backpacking DNK Presents

An Outdoor Weekend Adventure to Remember

By: Kati L Taylor
08/27/2017

 

In mid-August, a fun and diverse group went on the DNK Presents Wild Women’s Backpacking Overnight Adventure here in the beautiful Midwest. Several of the women had never been backpacking before. While some had been camping or “glamping”, most had not done an overnight trip for a while and it was a new experience for them to carry everything needed on their backs. Perhaps by the end of the trip some were questioning what they really need versus what provides comfort.

This weekend overnight trip gave women an opportunity to hike in the backcountry of both the beautiful Morgan-Monroe State Forest and Yellowwood Forest. The trip was structured and guided by some experienced women backpackers who want to share their love of nature with others. Meals, water filtration, and gear were provided, plus there was the security of knowing that the guides are trained to keep the group safe.

Being a women-only adventure makes these trips special.

Spending time outside, immersed in nature experiencing new things, brings out a different side to thoughts and how women connect with each other. Moreover, when you get a group of women together in the woods overnight, mentalities change, and conversation can be powerful and get intense!

There were two mother-daughter adventurers who got some quality time together. Two of the ladies were connected through a third friend but did not know each other. All three were young mothers. Another bold woman joined the trip solo, not knowing anyone prior to the trip. Regardless of their initial relationship, everyone worked together and became closer over the 24-hour adventure.

Wilderness trips prove to be great bonding opportunities, not only with each other, but ‘getting back to nature’ makes you more aware of yourself. After an energetic hike, several of the women realized an exceptional peacefulness in meditating by Bear Lake which set a more subdued mood for the hike back to the campsite.

No phone, but not alone.

Being in the backcountry means your phone basically does not work. With no reception a phone becomes only useful for the camera function and obviously there is nowhere to charge it. In fact, as the photo/video documentarian on this adventure, I may have been the only backpacker who intentionally left my phone back in the car.

While it’s comical now, at the time, everyone was concerned when the trip guide lost her phone. She was sure it had fallen out of her pocket at night near our campsite while gathering firewood. So the women teamed up to search through the darkness and find it. A persistent gal on the trip politely asked if she could search through the guide’s tent and backpack. Lo and behold, the phone was in her backpack the whole time. What a relief when it was found?!

This trivial happening, while it turned out well, was a great reminder that we need to disconnect. Having a great group of thoughtful, caring women on your team makes connecting easy even without a signal!

Leave no toothpaste… I mean leave no trace!

While trying to hang food in the tree overnight to avoid and racoons or other critters invading it, one of the ladies decided to use her toothpaste as a weight to get the rope over a tree limb. Long story short, it got stuck in the tree. With the intent of always leaving no trace on the trail, the group of women teamed up to get the toothpaste out of the tree. What an adventure it was! For more on this funny happening and to see what the women had to say about the trip overall, watch the video summary of the weekend’s adventures.

Mind the gap.

At the moment when this backpacking adventure had ended and the women were crossing the bridge to get back to their vehicles, a group from the Indiana Forrest Alliance was hiking in. These passionate folks were handing out brochures to raise support and awareness around an important issue in these exact forests where these women had just experienced so much.

Our state has plans to sell logging rights in this area where nearly 300 acres could be affected and thousands of trees could be logged if the deal goes through. This affects everyone and while the terms of the agreement may be vague, preserving our Indiana natural resources is for a greater good.

It’s important to preserve Indiana’s beautiful forests for the health of our planet, the wildlife that lives there, and for ourselves–let everyone forever enjoy the natural beauty! Please consider contacting Governor Holcomb and urge our state to stop logging the forests.

 

For those who have never been backpacking, or want to experience it again, consider a trip. Indiana has some beautiful outdoor spaces and amazing trails to experience. Disconnect, decompress, experience something new, and enjoy the natural beauty around you.

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