The big question always seems to be – where to next? It can be hard to find new places to hike, camp, or off-road. And honestly, when we started off-roading more a few years ago, we always went to the same spot. Butcher Jones. It was easy and we knew exactly what to expect.

As a mother of young kiddos, predictability is my jam. As we’ve gotten more comfortable with what to pack and bring, for even day trips, and as the boys have gotten more used to life on the dirt, we’ve started to venture out to new destinations and as a result, we’ve found some amazing places. Here are a few tips for finding new places to explore.

• Take your current favorites one step further- Are there more hikes around the same trailhead? Is there another side of the mountain or land to explore? You don’t have to totally start from scratch. This way you’re just adding a little bit of “new” to the adventure, and a familiar spot isn’t too far away.

• Find a group of like-minded people – We have loved doing runs with groups like Southwest Raptor Runs that usually do the pre-running and explore trails ahead of time. If you’re off-roading or hiking, there are lots of meetups and groups to check out. 

• Instagram – It’s weird to say but there’s so much benefit to following like-minded families and seeing where they’re hanging out. Then you can check out other photos shared from these tagged locations and do a bit more research to see if it’s a place worth venturing too.   

• Work Through a List – While we didn’t make it to all of the parks in 2019, we’re slowly still chugging through, working through a list (like we attempted in 2019 for Arizona National Park Sites) can be a great way to explore new destinations. Arizona, in particular, has so many State Parks and National Park Sites that have always been a great starting point for us when researching destinations.

Not every new adventure will be perfect and we’ve ended up on a few trails that were far from what we were expecting or hoping, but hey, that’s all part of the game. Happy Adventuring!