Bucket List Idea: Tree Camping in Elk

Every so often, something comes across my Facebook newsfeed or through my Inbox that is worthy of a shout out. Tree camping in Elk is worth a loud one. Not only is this off-the-beaten path, where I try to be, it’s not even on a path.

Nature started beckoning me after my wander to the Belize and Costa Rican rainforests in 2007. Trees started pulling me harder several years later during my first solo trip to Kauai several years later. And, they haven’t stopped, which is why tree camping is incredibly tantalizing.

Tree camping is exactly what it sounds like. You actually pitch your tent up in a tree. And, by “you,” I really mean YOU. In Elk, you are responsible for securing the tent in the tree and climbing in and out of it as needed or desired. Like most adventures, this one is not for the faint of heart, the lackadaisical, the out-of-shape…or, the budget-conscious. It is for those looking for an experience like no other or for yet another cool thing to add to the Bucket List. And, don’t get me started on the whole romance factor.

Elk is located on the California coast, about 150 miles north of San Francisco in Mendocino County. It extends along a stunning and secluded stretch of Highway 1, which meanders along the ragged Pacific shoreline above steep ocean bluffs. Coastal forests are home to prime camping trees, like Redwoods and Cyprus. In 1890, Elk was a thriving lumber town with more than 2,000 residents. It’s a bit smaller now that the lumber industry is gone, with less than 300 permanent residents. And, of course, some tree campers—and plenty of other less adventurous tourists.

Here’s some motivation and information about this unique experience from ExploretheUSA.com:

Tree Camping in Elk, California

And, check this out—Tentsile. They make portable treehouses—AKA tree tents—that may have you permanently off the hard, bumpy, and uneven ground where the creepy crawlies lives. Best of all, they plant three trees for every tent they sell. Pure awesome.

Time to go climb a tree.