You’ve been trapped in the city for too long. You can feel it in your bones. You have a deep desire to leave the crowds behind and wander through pristine wilderness. And escape those pesky co-workers who keep calling on the weekends.
If, tragically, you can’t leave town, these Instagram accounts can help you alleviate some of that wanderlust without using precious vacation days. They’ll guide you through the mountains, canyons and rivers of the country’s 618 million acres of public land. Maybe you’ll even find inspiration for your next adventure.
Bureau of Land Management
While not as well known as the National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management oversees far more space—nearly a tenth of the country—including campsites on the scenic Colorado River and remote Wyoming mountains. The bureau’s Instagram account showcases some of the scenery, trails, and wildlife tucked away in these vast parcels of uncrowded western lands.
In honor of his deceased father, Mikah Meyer set out in 2016 to visit all 417 units of the National Parks Service in his renovated cargo van. If he completes the journey—he has less than 100 sites less—he will become the youngest person to visit all the units and the first person to do so in one continuous journey. (The map of his planned route is insane.) Along the way, he also hopes to disprove the myth that LGBTQ people aren’t outdoorsy. Many of his photos show him proudly waving a rainbow Pride flag in front of the country’s most treasured landmarks.
National Forest Foundation
From waterfalls in Puerto Rican rainforests to stoic bighorn sheep overlooking mountains in Idaho’s national forests, the National Forest Foundation’s feed will introduce you to the wonders in every corner of the country. The foundation is the non profit partner of the U.S. Forest Service, which oversees 193 million acres of public land across 43 states. The Instagram account features lots of photos submitted by outdoor recreationists.
If you’ve ever daydreamed about quitting your office job and becoming a park ranger, this account is for you. Christina Adele Warburg is a 27-year-old park ranger who also takes breathtaking photos of the landscapes she’s lucky enough to call home. She’s currently based in Zion National Park, but she has also worked in the Tetons, Yellowstone, Yosemite and many other national icons. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for another transfer soon.
Author: Elise Schmelzer