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Tentrr App Will Help You Find Your Dream Campsite |

Tentrr App Will Help You Find Your Dream Campsite

After battling city traffic, we arrived at our campsite in Catskills, New York late, which usually would have meant a settling for a bad spot and pitching our tent with a headlamp. But this wasn’t a regular campsite, but rather, a private plot of land that we had booked through Tentrr, an Airbnb-like service that provides well-equipped sites on private property throughout the Northeast. (The company will expand to the Pacific Northwest by the end of this year.) We pulled up to a large canvas structure in an otherwise empty meadow, and inside we found a fully made-up queen-size cot, bedside crates with books and lanterns, a small wood-burning stove, and a large basket of firewood. Aside from a few hundred noisy crickets, we were completely alone.

Regular camping requires plenty of gear and effort, and for some people that’s part of the fun. But for those outdoor enthusiasts who still like the luxury of the indoors (solar showers, bedding) Tentrr’s premium campsites, (between $75-$165 per night) are the ideal compromise. It’s convenient and comfortable, but you’re still in nature, as we were reminded the next morning when we woke up to the sound of rain.


The tent kept us dry, so we lazed in bed listening to the percussion of water on canvas, and took turns to crawl out from the covers and throw another log into the stove. Eventually hunger and dead phone batteries led us to the nearby Phoenicia Diner for bottomless coffee and farm eggs cooked in cast iron skillets; we had breakfast supplies at the campsite, but the weather was a convenient excuse not to cook.

Our camp keeper Max, whose land we temporarily inhabited, didn’t have time for any rainy day excuses. Max is a professional outdoorsman, who guides hunting trips and designs biathlon courses for the winter Olympics. When camp keepers list their campsites on Tentrr, some offer add-on experiences like mountain bike riding or fishing excursions. We had arranged for Max to take us foraging for ramps, the wild onions that pop up at farmers markets and on trendy restaurant menus for a few weeks every spring. When I questioned whether we should call it off, Max looked confused. “It’s only rain,” he said, making me feel like a foolish city slicker. “And the ramps should come out of the wet ground a bit easier.”

We pulled on our hiking boots and raincoats and followed Max into the woods, climbing uphill through thick vegetation, detouring around fallen trees, and slipping on wet rocks. Max pointed out indentations on the ground and scratches on tree trunks. “Bears,” he said in the same way he talked about the rain, which by now had saturated all my layers. But soon enough we discovered these spearlike leaves poking out of the ground under a canopy of maple trees: ramps. Max gave us trowels and showed us how to grab a clump and carefully dig out the bulbs. We were wet and muddy, but quickly filled a plastic grocery bag with the wild stalks.

On the way back I noticed what looked like fiddlehead ferns, another spring delicacy. Max confirmed that I had identified them correctly, but said we were about a week too late for harvesting. No matter. I had evolved from urban wimp, afraid of the rain, to professional forager in an afternoon.

When we returned, Max offered to throw our clothes in the tumble dryer. I resisted the urge to ask if we could use his shower too, and headed back to our tent to do what most city slickers do on a rainy day: watch Netflix.

Category: Skillets  Tags: ,  Comments off
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