It's s'mores season, which means marshmallows and beach bonfires are likely the only things on our minds. If we had our suitcases packed with summer essentials, you'd find sunscreen, a polaroid camera, and probably a box of graham crackers, too. Now, all we need are the camping supplies, and we'd be prepared for the perfect weekend trip with our friends. But, we're not all outdoorsy, or know exactly what gear is needed for a night spent in the wilderness. That's where Ashwinn's Upstate Roaming Co. comes in. This company hooks you up with a Jeep, tents, and everything in between for a few nights in the woods. Just bring chocolate and maybe some other snacks, and you'll be good to go.
Everything I know about camping comes from watching The Parent Trap and endless episodes of Survivor. I took one trip down by the beach a few summers back with an entire crew of friends, but I've never slept under a starry night sky while surrounded by evergreens. Camping trips have always been on my bucket list, but buying all of the supplies is a serious reason why I haven't pursued it much more.
Especially if you're based in a city like New York City, where there are far more skyscrapers than trees, getting outside can be so necessary. Taking a road trip upstate, and disconnecting from the bright lights of Times Square is refreshing, and this company handles all of the hurdles. Don't worry about buying a sleeping bag or even bringing a lighter. Just rent a Jeep packed with what you need, and the start making some memories.
So, how does it work?
With Ashwinn's service, all of the logistics are taken care of. So, you can focus on good times and s'mores instead of worrying about where to rent a tent. Essentially, you and your crew decide when you want to take a camping trip, and then hit up this company to rent everything you need. The rental will include a packed Jeep Wrangler Unlimited and a pre-reserved campsite at the Kenneth L. Wilson Campground, if you also don't feel like booking your own.
When it's time to hit the road, the car will get dropped off wherever you'd like within any New York City borough, and should be returned to the right location in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. If you change your mind, you can cancel the car up to 10 days before the trip for a full refund. Although, it sounds like you'd be missing out on a pretty sweet summer getaway if you don't go, ya know?
What's included in the Jeep?
The Jeep is packed with basically every bit of gear you could imagine, and even a first-aid kit. There are sleeping bags, tents, and pads for when it's time to hit the hay. Even the cooking essentials have been covered, like a cooler, dutch oven, camping stove, and set of utensils (amongst a few other things). You'll likely need to build a fire, especially if you're planning on making food during your time in the woods. So, a lighter has been packed as well. First-timers will definitely want to check out a field guide for tips on how to get a spark started, or at least watch the latest season of Survivor.
If you're headed to somewhere with a lake, you'll probably spend your afternoons taking a dip and swinging off of rope swings with your crew. But, just in case you get bored, you can find a deck of cards and hammocks included in this Jeep, too. Everything gets cleaned in between each rental, so all of the dirt is your own. (You're outdoors, after all. Prepare to rough it a little, it's part of the experience!) The only things you need to worry about bringing along for the ride is food, personal toiletries, and booze — if you're over 21 and would like to drink.
Why should you go camping ASAP?
Pick a weekend, grab the keys, and just go. Seriously, your wanderlust is calling this summer, and I'm unsure why you'd ever wait to answer it when there are deals as sweet as this one in the world. Not to mention, Memorial Day weekend is a few days away, and you've been trying to plan a road trip. Camping might not be an experience you've ever thought of, but getting out of your comfort zone a bit is what adventure and being 20-something is all about.
Ashwinn started this company because he is an outdoor enthusiast, but found it hard to organize a trip and get out of NYC. "We only had 50 percent of the gear we needed, and finding or buying the rest was a huge pain," he tells Elite Daily. "I wondered — what if you just had an all-in-one rental that made it dead simple for people to get out of the city and into the woods?"
Truth is, all of your worries have been taken care of, and planning is the most stressful part of any trip. But with summer coming in full force, you can't just sit inside and wait for the world to come to you. The idea of wandering into the woods with a Wrangler and my wonderful friends makes me want to book a camping trip STAT.