June marks the ‘official’ start of summer and with it, all the adventures you have been dreaming and planning through the winter and spring. It is exciting to hear about the time you are spending outside, whether it is your first ‘major’ car camping trip, your progress section hiking the AT, a trip to the Gila Wilderness in New Mexico, or anything in between. Thank you for taking the time to share your experiences (and your photos!) with us here in the community.
What’s New in Conversations?
This month we added another group, Outdoor Photographers, to our mix of group offerings. You all have so many amazing photography skills and photos to share, we wanted to create a space to help bring all that advice, expertise, and knowledge into one spot that is easy to find and access. Whether you are a seasoned photographer or just starting out, you’ll find some great information there!
In June we saw 2,120 new users join our community and over 1,700 posts. Additionally, we had our biggest day of sign-ups ever with almost 900 (897, so close!). While the thread, Favorite photo of your pet in the outdoors… isn’t new, it did receive over 200+ responses this month, making it our most responded to thread ever in the community! Those moments were, in part, driven by an email that went out to REI members encouraging them to check out the cool things happening in Conversations. We are so grateful for all your contributions that make our community a fun and engaging place for new members to enjoy!
As a reminder, if you’d like to invite your friends or folks you know who may enjoy our community, you can send them an invitation directly from a thread or board in our community. Check out this article, How to: Invite a Friend to join the community for all the details.
In a post that seems very timely now that we’ve endured a recent ‘heat dome’ over many parts of the US, @nathanu's prompt brought out lots of great advice for how to manage getting outside when the weather is hot. Given we have most of the summer left, this is a thread we’re going to keep checking back in on.
“Sock liners are essential. They wick moisture away from my feet and my socks then deal with it. IT's funny, you'd think wearing extra layers in hot weather would make things worse but my feet feel a lot better and drier when I wear liners.” @Dad_Aint_Hip
This thread by @bearbait is a great read no matter your experience level. One of the most powerful things about being outside is that even the most experienced of us can learn something new. This thread helps tap into that collective wisdom. Feel free to check it out and leave your thoughts as well!
“To really really understand the worlds you are entering into, you have to really just be still in nature for extended periods of time. When you literally just sit in a place for several hours, or day, or more, then you really start to see the place. The plants, insects, weather, animals, geology, patterns of day and night and the like start to reveal themselves. This is when you really disconnect from our normal patterns of achievement and being to see and experience the world you’ve chosen to spend some time in.” @Walker
This thread, started by @Davpow, has us dreaming of camp feasts! We are curious how you all learned to cook using your Dutch ovens and what other amazing meals you like to cook with them. We’re always encouraging folks to share photos in the community; this thread now has us wondering about food samples…
“I LOVE my cast iron dutch-ovens. I've done lasagna, enchiladas, meatloaf, beef & veggie stew, baked spaghetti, chicken & dumplings, biscuits, cinnamon rolls, fruit cobblers, breakfast casseroles, chili & cornbread, mac & cheese. I just discovered a new pulled-pork recipe to try, and how to make fresh popped popcorn. Now you have my mind churning on how to make nachos!” @JeffPPeters
“@JeffPPeters Holy cow! I bow to your dutch oven greatness!” @Philreedshikes
We hope your summer is shaping up to be full of time spent outside enjoying nature, fresh air, winding trails and rivers. We appreciate that you take the time to share your experiences and knowledge here in the community with each other. You’re stoking the excitement for folks to get outdoors and helping others gain valuable experience and insight into their own journeys outside. Whatever your plans are for this summer, we hope you come share your stories with us here!