A Fool Proof Strategy for Simple, Effective Adventure Journalling


Outsideways was designed from the ground-up for people who want to remember the tiny details of their adventures without having to write novels. Or essays. Or paragraphs. Or, even complete sentences. We do this by putting technology to work for you.

If I were to recommend one strategy to practically guarantee effective and consistent journalling under almost all circumstances, it would be this:

Journal Small, Journal Frequently

When you are out on an adventure, you have a lot of things going on. At the end of a long day in the fresh air you are tired. You probably won't have the time or energy to string together coherent sentences, nor will you necessarily want to spend a ton of time in front of a device.

I know from first hand experience! When we were on our AT thru-hike, our town stops were busy. We had food to buy, laundry to wash, copious amounts of food to eat, gear to fix, and tons of other minutiae to deal with. We didn't have time for regular writing along the way.

A much more sustainable strategy is to make frequent, small posts to your journal as-you-go. Send a photo, with a short caption. Do that a few times a day, and before you know it you have a very detailed journal. More detailed, in fact, than if you sat down once a week and wrote out a few paragraphs.

By posting frequent, short, journal entries, you get a bonus: dates, times, locations, and elevations. Every post has the date and time associated with it. If you have locations attached to the photographs you take with your phone, those locations will show up on your journal's map. These extra tidbits can flesh-out a big part of the story without you having to put in any extra effort.

A New Way of Looking at Journals

Think of an Outsideways journal like a scrapbook, or a breadcrumb trail. A place where you can horde the little bits of information that you want to remember as you go. Your digital Moleskine notebook.

Even if you plan on writing blog posts, or articles, or a book, you still need a way to record and remember the events as you go. This is exactly what Outsideways was designed for.

If you want to write long posts, by all means, knock yourself out. However, if you want to find an effective, low-stress way to capture your memories as-you-go, consider thinking of your journal as a stream of consciousness rather than discrete blocks of story telling.

Features to Help You Along

Considering that Outsideways was designed around the premise of creating short, frequent posts, here are some of the technical features that you can take advantage of along the way:

  • You can post journal entries by email or text messages. This makes it super easy to fire off a quick post as-you-go. A big benefit of the post-by-email feature is that you can send posts to your journal without internet access. They will get queued up in your outbox, and get sent out the next time you connect to the Internet. Learn more.
  • Journals don't have to be public. You can keep things completely private, share with a select group of people, or mix-and-match your privacy settings to suit your specific needs. Just because Outsideways is a website doesn't mean that the things you post have to be public. Learn more.
  • Maps and locations don't have to be public. If you don't want people who follow your journal to know where you are, you don't have to show them. You can keep all location data private if you like. Learn more.
  • Take your journal home with you. You can download your journals any time you like. When your adventure is done, you can keep everything you posted safe-and-sound on your home computer. Learn more.

We Are Here to Help

We are here to help if you need it. If you have any questions, problems, or suggestions, please get in touch!

karentogo's avatar

I look forward to trying out this journalling tool for our next fun-in-the-snow getaway!

  • posted Sat Mar 3, 2018 @ 15:28

toesalad's avatar

It isn't really anything new, but I am trying to explain to people how it is designed to work :-)

  • posted Sat Mar 3, 2018 @ 18:12

hammerhead's avatar

I am interested in applying this to my motorcycle trip across Canada this summer, I will need a bit od help to make this work for me

  • posted Sat Mar 3, 2018 @ 18:51

karentogo's avatar

Explaining this helps - thanks.

  • posted Sat Mar 3, 2018 @ 20:20

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