Why the "Plan" is Just a Really Flexible Guideline

Going with the flow on the road has never been better.

Sometimes you can get so amped up a planned adventure, you may get a little heart broken when it doesn't go the way it was drawn up. But don't fret - there's still hope for something epic because now there's something to work off of!

Here's how changing your plan can made the PERFECT adventure:

One weekend, I reached out to a friend who had briefly spoke about a potential backpacking trip in the Berkshires of Massachusetts. Never having backpacked in the states I was eager to jump on the opportunity and packed up my good ole' 60L for the 3 day adventure as soon as I got out of work at 1 A.M. But this plan changed... and it was a great idea.


(This is Lucas. He knows a lot of stuff and leads a dope road trip.)

Running a bit off schedule on a Tuesday, we arrived at Mount Washington State Forest Headquarters and signed in for the 2 nights of camping on the trail. Scooping out the beginning of our path,  we had underestimated the length of paved road we had to walk and the weather that was in our future. So we rethought our trip and simply decided to put off this backpacking trip.

Now we were free to explore.

DAY 1: Trail Food VS. Pizza?

With the camping season just starting, we were in luck with plenty of available campsites. I mean, it also helped that it was during the weekday. We head back to town and picked up some beer, wine, and a large pizza then drove over to Beartown State Forest Campground for our first campsite. This was what I call glamping!


Snagged ourselves a sweet campsite (and a spot on dinner!)

This corner of New England was filled with AT connections and a small chunk went right through this state forest on the Benedict Pond Loop Trail where the campsites are (like, seriously just a 2 minute walk). For just a moment, it was epic to be on a part of the AT!


Gorgeous scroll around the pond!

DAY 2: Hike on Hike on Hike!

We woke up to a beautiful day and a beautiful state forest to check out. Just a 5 minute drive from the campsite was the trailhead to the Lookout Trail with views of the Taconic and the Catskills. I had cold instant oatmeal for breakfast for the first time up here and I can honestly say... it was pretty damn good.


Quick climb up for an sick view. G'morning and bring breakfast!

NEXT UP -

Our hike of the day! We returned to Mt. Washington State Forest Headquarters and began our summit up Alander Mountain where the trail showed no signs of any other human and salami and cheese cracker sandwiches for lunch.




The climb to the top was not only refreshing, but so fun!

But it wasn't Alander that stole my heart this day...

I've seen tons of waterfall throughout my recent years of wandering in the woods, but something about Bash Bish Falls was absolutely magical. Running from a howling storm, we speed walked the .5 mile as fast as we could so I could to see this popular beauty for the first time.

Simply... Thank you Bash Bish. That's all I had to say as we ended our day with the storm behind us and moving to the next state to camp in the Catskills at Devil's Tombstone Campground for the night.

DAY 3: Shoutout to Lucas for Knowing Everything

It's the final day and you think we're sick of hiking yet? Absolutely not. (That wasn't even funny, sorry.) Lucas knew the perfect hike to start the day and we hit up Overlook Mountain for some serious 360 views. (DO climb the fire tower!)


Steady climb up, well worth it! But let's be honest, the hike down was not kind the knees.

And for one final adventure --

With the camping pass we had the night before we still had access to the other Catskill campsites and decided to check out the North Lake Campsite for a possible swim, or hike, or whatever we wanted to do. It was a perfect time to chill before our drive home in Connecticut.


By the way, a hammock has been one of the best life decisions I have ever made. You should get one too!

CONCLUSION

To all those planners out there... thank you! You are amazing for doing what you do and traveling would never be as great without your wisdom, but when the opportunity comes for flexibly... take it because who knows what other unplanned expedition may come your way! Remember a "plan" is just a guideline that can be broken. Do what is best for the conditions and what will fulfill your need to wanderlust. After all, it is an adventure!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Tiffany YoungExplorer

Chick from the coast that found love in the mountains.