Annie Lindgren, writer for North Forty News, set out on a road trip March 9. As closures and restrictions spread, Annie decided to ‘stay gone’.  She writes from the road as she explores the backroads of America. 

Annie Lindgren

North Forty News

Wellington writer, Annie Lindgren, set out March 9 for a road trip south to desert country. As ‘stay orders’ initiated in Colorado, and other states, Annie decided that she would do best to stay on the road. A writer and lifelong adventurer, she is sharing stories and images from her travels, as she explores the backroads of America, during this time of pandemic.

Annie started her journey in the diverse state of Texas, spending two weeks exploring its circumference. She moved on to New Mexico, falling in love with ‘The Land of Enchantment’, spending the next six weeks there. She celebrated two months on the road in the state of Arizona. Next, it is North to cooler weather. 

For Annie, having to ‘stay home’ meant being confined to a space that often felt suffocating. She is happiest outdoors in wide-open spaces. Where one can enjoy the sounds of birds and the sights of nature living vibrantly, oblivious to pandemic. As a writer, she can write anywhere.

With most National and State parks closed, camping is restricted to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) or National Forest Service land. Places with backroads and roadside camping, but no facilities, electricity, or water (unless you camp near some). Cell service is not guaranteed. To sustain in places like this, you have to have everything you need and be extra aware of your surroundings.

Annie travels with her Golden Retriever, ‘Maverick’, and they sleep in and live out of a Subaru Outback. She carries plenty of food and water for more extended stays off the grid. She makes sacrifices to sustain this lifestyle. Bathing happens in natural water sources, and showers come from a bag. There are no bathrooms or sinks. Each space has weather, insects, and wildlife-related issues to deal with. Water can be hard to find. A camp mattress is far less comfortable than a bed. A camp stove and weeks between food resupplies rarely resulting in elaborate meals. 

There are many beautiful things to discover everywhere, even with parks closed. Flowers never seen before, interesting rocks and formations, the beauty in sunsets and sunrises. The steady supply of learning experiences, discoveries, and route planning makes every day interesting and something to look forward to. Each camp spot has its unique ingredients. You never know what you will find when you stop to look.

Annie is taking this opportunity to explore the many wilderness areas sprinkled throughout America, where distancing from humans is easy, and opportunities for outdoor time abundant. To see photos and learn more about her travels, follow Annie’s ‘Sunshine Ink’ business page on Facebook and Instagram, or visit her website at Stay tuned for more pictures and articles, shared via North Forty News.  

This article was published in North Forty News and New Scene: