Riley Draper

Riley Draper is a writer and entrepreneur from Chattanooga, Tennessee. As a world traveler, he has been to more than fifty countries and hiked some of the most elusive trails in the world. He is the co-founder of WeCounsel Solutions and has published work in both national and global outlets, including the Times Free Press, Patch, and Healthcare Global. When he's not writing, he's probably on a hiking trip or climbing in the mountains.

Articles by Riley Draper

Tents outdoors.

6 Best Heaters For Tent Camping in 2021

Looking for the best heater for tent camping? Read on! Long gone are the days when a camping trip was synonymous with roughing it. There...
roaring fire with blurred flames from wood logs in a stone firepit

5 Stupid-Simple Ways to Start a Fire Pit

Whether you’re in the backyard or out in the sticks, starting a fire doesn’t have to be a painful process. There are countless ways to...
river Missouri smoothly flows between picturesque hills

The 10 Best River Float Trips in Missouri

Missouri is one of the hidden gems of natural beauty in the midwest, and these float trips will help you understand why. From nature-focused trips...
Teens grilling sausages on campsite.

20 Family Camping Hacks to Keep Kids (& You) Happy

One of the most fun experiences you can have as a parent who loves the great outdoors is introducing your little ones to camping, hiking,...
Boy with Hydration Pack on His Shoulder Wearing White Shirt before Surfing,

7 Easy Ways to Clean & Dry Your Hydration Bladder

Cleaning your hydration pack’s bladder is probably the last thing on your mind right now. It’s one of those chores that’s remarkably easy to overlook...
young woman is sitting with a mug of tea on a cliff overlooking the autumn mountains with fog

What to Wear Hiking in Cold vs Hot Weather

While you may want hiking to be somewhat of a challenge, battling the weather itself is usually not the experience you’re looking for. Being comfortable...
Close up of red down jacket, winter fashion outfit

What Is Down Fill Power & Why Does it Matter?

If you've ever bought outerwear made from down or other goose down products for winter weather camping, hiking, or snow sports, you’ve probably seen fill...
merino wool

The Benefits (& Drawbacks) of Wearing Merino Wool

No one likes wearing wool. It’s uncomfortable, and it’s itchy. However, there’s a difference between traditional wool and merino wool. Wearing merino wool clothing is...
friends camping outdoors

50 Funny Camping Jokes & One Liners for Campers

Do you love jokes? Do you love camping? How about camping jokes? Camping jokes are a great way to relieve the tension during a difficult...
camping gear and an airplane in a field

How to Fly with Camping Gear Like A Pro

Sometimes good hiking locations are super far away, and it would cost more to drive than to fly. However, flying means consolidating your gear and...
a deer in the woods

Where to Shoot a Deer for One-Shot Kills

Let’s face it, tracking the blood trail of a wounded deer is exhausting. It takes forever for the deer to die, and it is easier...
bullets

Basic Bullet Sizes, Calibers & Types (Explained)

Matching the right bullet sizes for your gun can be tricky. It’s never going to be an easy task, whether you’re just getting started buying...
a group of people on a scenic hike

10 Crucial Hiking Tips for Beginners

Just like with any new hobby, there’s only one place to start, and that’s at the beginning. Experienced hikers have their own way of doing...
A camping hatchet in a wooden log.

The 7 Best Camping Hatchets in 2021 – Reviewed

May 14, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents You might think that hatchets are just for the hardcore campers out there. Although hatchets might make you...
Dozens of colorful tents in a green field.

The Best Tent Brands on the Market

April 28, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents To the untrained eye, many 3-4-season tent brands may seem identical in terms of virtually all characteristics except price;...
Backpacker eating freeze dried food

8 Best Freeze-Dried Foods for Camping & Backpacking

April 23, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents One of the most difficult choices you have to make when you're packing your things for an extended...
Gas camping stove and pot in the mountains

Jetboil Zip vs Flash: Which Boiler is Best?

Jetboil is one of the best manufacturers of backpacking stove systems. If you’re looking for lightweight solutions to getting a hot meal on the trail,...
A man opening a sleeping bag at the base of a mountain

Best 3 Season Sleeping Bags in 2021 – Tested and Reviewed

April 21, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents Sleeping bags are one of the lynchpins of a good camping trip. Without a good sleeping bag, your...
Man relaxing in sleeping bag enjoying sunset mountains landscape

7 Best Lightweight Summer Sleeping Bags in 2021

April 21, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents Summer is easily the best season to hit the campgrounds. You're always likely to post up in a...
Mountain summit

Non-Technical Mountain Climbs: 10 Best Hiking Summits

Not everyone is an experienced mountaineer, and getting started can be hard. Let’s face it: climbing Everest sounds like fun until you realize you’ve never...
constellation

7 Famous Constellations Everyone Can Find

Many people are amazed by the stars, even those who live in big cities and rarely see the night sky. However, it can sometimes be...
A man pointing a flashlight at the sky

Best Lightweight Flashlight For Hiking & Backpacking 2021

If there’s one thing you can’t leave at home when you heading out to hike and backpack, it’s your flashlight. Your flashlight is one of...
Silhouette of runner woman eating energy bar

8 Best Energy Bars for Hiking in 2021

April 19, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents The hardest part of a difficult hike, ironically, isn't the difficult hike. Where people tend to struggle the...
camp fire

5 Ways to Start a Fire Without Matches or Lighters

So, you’re stranded somewhere and need fire to keep warm or you want to be more prepared in case that ever happens? Starting a fire...
tarp camping

Tarp Camping: Beginner’s Guide to Camping Without a Tent

Camping with a tent can be challenging at times. You might be camping with lots of people and not a lot of tents, so you...
Folding saw stuck in tree in forest

Best Backpacking Saw in 2021 – Tested and Reviewed

When you’re backpacking the only things you can rely on are the tools on your back. That means if you’re clearing away wood for a...
Man and woman hikers walking with backpacks on trail in green forest mountains.

7 Best Mountaineering Sunglasses of 2021

April 18, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents When you're hitting the slopes or clawing your way to the top of a difficult mountain, you might...
Hiker wearing hiking backpack and hardshell jacket on hike in forest.

10 Best Hardshell Jackets in 2021

April 18, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents Hardshell jackets are a step up from a windbreaker, they're the ultimate form of a rain jacket, and...
A pair of hiking boots

How to Fix Heel Slippage in Boots

One thing every hiker needs is a good pair of boots. However, sometimes your heel falls out with every step you take. New shoes can...
A dangerous trail with a sharp cliff on both sides

10 Scariest and Most Dangerous Hiking Trails on Earth

One reason for hiking’s long-lasting and widespread popularity is the ability to choose whatever level of danger and challenge you want. So while some might...
Back view of young woman silhouette relaxing on orange hammock between two trees

Hammock vs Tent Camping – The Debate is Over

For most casual campers and backpackers, it would be wild to consider sleeping in anything other than a tent in the backcountry. While car and...
woman attaches a trailer to a ball-type tow hitch

The 5 Different Types of Trailer Hitches (Explained) 

With the growing popularity of tiny homes, RVs, and other alternative camping options, there’s a lot to explore in the world of trailers and trailer...
Man jet washing his fishing bivvy

How to Clean Your Tent (Plus 5 Tent Care Tips)

It’s a good idea to clean your tent every time your return from a camping or backpacking trip. You’ll also want to give it a...
Prairie rattlesnake in Wyoming prairie

6 Poisonous Snakes in California (And How to Spot Them)

While California is a great destination for hiking, camping, fishing, and all things outdoors, there are some natural dangers you’ll need to look out for...
A trail through the mountains with fog.

8 Best Wildlife Trail Cameras in 2021 – Reviewed

April 12, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents From assisting in hunting to home security purposes, trail cameras have many uses. When used in the bush,...
A forest.

12 Common Types Of Trees (Tree Species) And How To Identify Them

Tree species are such a common form of plant life that they often go unnoticed in our daily lives. Generally speaking, as they don't have...
Camelback Mountain in Arizona.

How Long Does it Take to Hike Camelback Mountain?

The ancient rock of Camelback Mountain calls out to hikers from across the world. Named for its resemblance to the hump and head of a...
Man standing in front of a waterfall.

The 7 Best Towels for Backpacking in 2021 – Reviews

    October 26, 2019/Riley Draper Table of Contents Backpacking works up a real sweat. For longer treks, inclement weather can soak hikers and  backpackers...
A toddler sleeping in a tent.

10 Best Bed Tents For Kids & Toddlers in 2021 (Reviewed) 

    November 16, 2020/Riley Draper Table of Contents You might never have heard of a bed tent, so we're going to introduce you to...
A person on top of a mountain covered by snow.

The 7 Best Microspikes for Hiking in 2021 – Reviews

March 23, 2021/Riley Draper Table of Contents Microspikes make hiking easier. Hiking is a wonderful activity. It allows us to see beautiful highs and exhilarating...
A view of Denver Colorado

10 Best Hikes Within Two Hours of Denver CO

The Mile High City of Denver, Colorado is surrounded by miles of gorgeous landscapes overflowing with natural wonders. With just a short drive out of...
A view of Seattle's sky line

10 Best Hikes Within Two Hours of Seattle WA

Did you know Seattle is known as the Emerald City? Unless you live in or near Seattle, it is very likely you immediately think of...
catalina island

Backpacking the Trans Catalina Trail on Catalina Island

Nestled within the old-world charm of small island towns and rustic territory is the Trans Catalina Trail: a 38.5 mile-long backpacking trail located on Santa...
a bridge in pittsburgh

20 Best Places to Camp Within 2 Hours of Pittsburgh, PA

The city of Pittsburgh is an early 20th-century industrial capital, and its history can be observed by the buildings that are modeled after the Gilded...
Two people on a hike

50 Best Hiking Quotes to Inspire Your Next Adventure

Hiking is not without its challenges, no matter how experienced the hiker might be. Sometimes it may seem as though the trail is getting longer...
pexels-mehran-b-86649

How To Identify and Eat Hickory Nuts In The Wild 

Hickory trees can be found all across the United States, and they’re a wonderful source of on-the-trail nutrition. The hickory is in the same family...
Maui, Hawaii

10 Best Hikes in Maui HI – Ancient Maui Hiking Trails

Maui is one of the islands that belong to the state of Hawaii, and it’s filled with gorgeous trees and beaches. Maui is home to...
Bend Oregon

20 Best Places to Camp Within 2 Hours of Bend, OR

Bend is a small city in central Oregon that offers beautiful landscapes and trails. One thing that attracts many tourists to Bend is the Newberry...
Downton Austin Texas

20 Best Places to Camp Within 2 Hours of Austin, TX

The state capital of Texas is most well-known for its live music scene and beautiful scenery. The Colorado River runs right through the heart of...
Washington DC

20 Best Places to Camp Within 2 Hours of Washington, DC

The nation’s capital provides visitors and residents alike with plenty of activities to partake in while out and about. Being home to many sites to...