Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness Area map

Check out this United States Forest Service map of the Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness Area. We’ll be camping there is less than four days! See the places section of the blog for more information on where we’re going.

Click to enlarge. Map: U.S. Forest Service.


Meet Allie

Allison Jarrell

Aspiring photojournalist with an emphasis on the environment

Allison loves nature photography and aspires to be a photojournalist. Some of her photography can be found here.

“Nothing against people or buildings, but trying to capture the essence of wildlife in its natural habitat is a truly breathtaking experience.”

Allison says the wilderness class seems to good to be true.

“A course that combines nature, camping, and writing seemed too good to be true! I haven’t camped very much, only a few times this past summer. Cooking over a fire campfire and canoeing were a couple of my favorite highlights. Falling asleep to a symphony of insect harmonies is definitely something I could get used to!”

Meet Rebecca

Rebecca Wierda

Junior parks, recreation and tourism resources major

Rebecca works as a seasonal interpretive ranger at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Her goal is to continue working for the National Park Service.

“I love spending time outside among the trees.  It is where I feel the most alive and real.  I enjoy hiking, swimming, as well as sitting and thinking.  I get some of my best work, for school or work, is done outside. I am taking this class because I want to learn and practice getting my thoughts, feelings, and ideas down while I am outside and enjoying nature.  I learn best by doing and practicing, getting the experience.  So, what better way than to go out and camp and write!”

Rebecca is an avid camper. She started camping at the age of 5 and has had many outdoors experiences. She loves being able to connect with friends and family while camping.

“One of my favorite camping memories is when a few friends and myself were trying to plan a camping trip but ended up in a barn.  We wanted to camp down the road at a campground but were having issues planning it, long story short, we ended up in an old barn.  The whole night I could hear owls, raccoons, and bats!  Then, in the morning, I woke to the sun shining through the slats of the barn!”

Meet Kerri Jo

Kerri Molitor

Senior journalism major with a specialization in environmental studies

Kerri is currently taking a photojournalism class. She’s also done some writing for the Michigan Nature Association blog.

“I decided to take this course because I wanted a fun course for my senior year, but I knew it would teach me something about nature writing. I haven’t had a lot of camping experience, so this course seemed perfect to start getting some! I did camp last spring break at Myrtle Beach with some friends. We had running water and toilets and showers, but it was still a lot of fun. We enlisted help from our neighbors when we realized we had no way to break down wood for the fire!”

Welcome to the class!

Hello! My name is Rachael Gleason and I’m a second-year graduate student in the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism. I am putting together a class blog for the camping trip and would love everyone to contribute.

Please send me a paragraph about yourself and a large color photograph. The paragraph should include what you are studying, why you decided to take the class and describe at least one camping experience. It would be great if you could send any nature photography, videos, poetry or short stories as well. You can send the materials to me at


— Rach