Coffee while boondocking in the badlands

First time Boondocking, Sioux Falls, and more

Boondocking is camping with no electric, water or sewer hookups. It's often called “Dry Camping”. This week, we released our video of the Badlands National Park in South Dakota. I hear the North Dakota Badlands are even more intense, but I didn't see those, I saw these, and they were pretty awesome. I present, for your viewing pleasure, this week's video:

Boondocking for the first time in the Badlands – Forgive the shaky cam. I think I had too much coffee when filming a lot of this.

When we set off on this adventure, we knew we would want to be self-sufficient if possible, so we bought a generator. This trip gave us the perfect opportunity to try it out. It was amazing. We had the most relaxing weekend because we didn't feel the need to go anywhere to experience nature. We had it all around us. It was an amazing, incredible time. We had big horn sheep walk THROUGH our campsite. Read the full post for details about where we went etc.

Don't forget Sioux Falls

As I've no doubt said many times, it's easy to fall behind on this stuff…but we also put up a video about Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Meagan joked yesterday and said I should make a t-shirt that says “Do it right, have a picnic lunch”. Because apparently I make that recommendation in a lot of videos. Without further ado, here is Sioux Falls:

Over Two (2) Months on the Road – Feeling Grateful

Yeah, we've been on the road for over 2 months now. We've now seen 8 National Parks and a bunch of national monuments. It's been an incredible journey an it makes me happy to be able to share it with you.

There are so many things we've learned about life on the road. So many of them are specific to our day to day, like:

  • Don't leave anything outside overnight. “It's always going to rain” we say.
  • If it's windy at all, put EVERYTHING that can get blown around down or in.
  • Always Always Always chock first.
  • Relax. Mistakes are often made in haste.
  • Mind the dip – it gets better (thanks to Keep Your Daydream for this one)

There are more where that came from. But also, we've learned some other things too.

People are a lot like mirrors. They'll reflect what you project. If you're generally in a good disposition, they will be too. We've found this even in situations where someone was initially grumpy. Maybe they have some expectations about how your interaction will go…but when you start to shape that interaction into something pleasant, what you get in return is a pleasant surprise. I think this is general, but we're at the mercy of others much more often than we used to be.

We NEED to stay the night at the campground. We NEED the mechanic to look at the truck first thing. We NEED the person at the grocery store to help us check out quickly and efficiently because we have 3 tired, hungry kids who will riot if we don't get out of this store in the next few minutes. We need help, and we get it. We get it a lot. It's humbling and we are continually reminded about how much we rely on the Lord through all of this.

We have felt God's presence with us through this trip, we've felt a closeness to him. I envision God seeing us play in his creation like a parent watching a child open a gift on Christmas. We are infused with the knowledge that we are lucky to be able to live this way and walk this out, and that makes us grateful for everything.

We're entering a season of gratitude. I've never felt more grateful in my life than I do right now. Meagan and I celebrated 14 years of marriage last week. Thing is, it hasn't felt like 14 years. It's gone by so fast. But it's been so great.

I have a very small toolbox now. In our house I had a huge space for my tools. I had a ton of woodworking equipment and just about anything I might need to build something. Now I have 1 toolbox and a tool pouch I keep loaded with the most common stuff. Thing is, I love these tools. I love them even MORE than all of the tools I had before. Because I am grateful to have them. When I need the screwdriver…I really need it. When I go to get it, and I find it and use it I feel appreciation for it. It's small, but I notice it. I appreciate it and am grateful for it.

The point I'm trying to make is that our world is small, we're in a smaller space, but there's more room…for us. We see each other. Actually SEE each other. Meagan and I have joined together on and adventure and our souls are being knit together in it.

This thanksgiving, we're feeling very grateful. Grateful for our health. Grateful to be alive. Grateful to be able to see this country. And Grateful to be able to share what we learn with others.

I hope that as you enter the Thanksgiving season (oh my is it really that close?), you'll enter it with a sense of gratefulness, not for how much you have, but for how little you care about. Because at the end of the day, the stuff you appreciate and truly enjoy can likely fit into one room.

It's your loved ones…I'm talking about your loved ones.

Thanks, as always, for tuning in. We're glad to be able to share with you.



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Joseph Hinson is first and foremost a family man. He is the founder of, president of Out:think Group, creator of a ton of different projects and all around geek. Contact: