It’s summer here in the US. In our neck of the woods of Tulsa it’s been raining a lot (understatement) and I can think of no better time to hit the road to get out of the rain, search for sunshine and go camping!
Picture this. You head out into the wilderness for some much needed R & R and decide to go camping. You pull into a state park and begin the search to claim that perfect spot. After staking your claim and setting up camp you and (whoever you bring along) are enjoying a quiet evening listening to the sounds of nothing but nature and the crackle of a campfire. Life is good. At night you head into your tent to go to sleep and dream of what adventures tomorrow will surely bring. Suddenly you are awoken at 3am by some very loud people. Music begins to blare, bottles begin to break and fights break out. Not exactly ideal. Had you known that the campsite would allow people to roll in this late you might have picked another spot, preferably one that neighbored to a little more peaceful neighbors. How does one find out this information beforehand? That’s the problem that Tulsa startup, Campstake is looking to solve. Campstake curates user reviews and information on camping spots around the country.
Campstake Co-Founder Brandon Painter was eating lunch one day with his then co-worker, Seth Nieman, who shared a story about the pain it took to research the perfect father-son camping spot for an upcoming trip. If only there was a way to figure out how camping spots differed in areas of travel!? (And let’s be honest, they almost always do). Together they set up to solve the problem and Campstake was born.
Campstake is currently in pre-launch mode and if you visit the site you’ll see they are operating on an invite-only basis. This technique was used with early days of Pinterest and we all know how that turned out (really good). Additionally they are calling for photographers to submit photos to help build the community. This reminds me a little bit of the Airbnb photographer program launched in 2010. Airbnb found that by contracting professional photographers, Airbnb hosts were two and half times more likely to book an average rental of $1,025. a night. While camp site bookings won’t be as pricey I can see a similar program being an important relationship for Campstake’s growth as well.
How People Research Camp Sites Today
According to Painter there is a lot of fragmentation when it comes to finding camp site descriptions and insider information. Currently people have to turn to sites such as: Yonder, AllTrails, MapMyHike and social media to gather various types of information.
Campstake aims to create an online community that consolidates all this information. It will allow users to add reviews, upload photos, ask other users for tips in a given area, track trips, check-in and more.
Natalie is a content creator and strategist at Happy Place Marketing. She is the co-founder of a Tulsa startup called, Ramblen, a website that helps people stay fit while they travel.