Think of it like Airbnb for exploring nature.

By Paul Brady
March 22, 2020
Credit: Courtesy of Yonder

File this one under: right time, right place.

Yonder, a new tool for discovering outdoor experiences, is a bit like Airbnb for getting outside. Started by a permaculture farmer based in Montana, Yonder says it goes far beyond what’s already available online, connecting travelers and locals alike with hands-on experiences, including “organic farming, trekking through a canyon, sampling grapes on the vine, or taking in a majestic view,” as the site states.

Credit: Courtesy of Yonder

Each of the experiences is led by an expert or experts — called “stewards” — who provide context and depth to farm stays, ranch vacations, and other adventures available through the site, under categories such as Escape and Open Sky. One example is the Reindeer Walk at the Running Reindeer Ranch in Fairbanks, Alaska, where guests can hike through the woods with animals leading the way. There’s also The Cabin at Purradise, a pet-friendly retreat in the wilds of Utah, close to five national parks and set under big skies ideal for stargazing. Another option includes Treetop Mountain View at Big Creek Lodge in British Columbia. Here, guests can play the role of rancher for a spell, riding horses, herding cattle, and even helping to brand animals.

Credit: Courtesy of Yonder
Credit: Courtesy of Yonder

The launch of the nature-focused site has coincidentally come as terms like social distancing are trending globally — and as the broader travel industry is experiencing an unprecedented drop in demand. While Yonder’s debut isn’t a reaction to those facts, it’s hard to miss the potential of a site centered on getting away in our current moment.

As founder Tim Southwell put it in a recent blog post, “Yonder is a catalyst for creating a harmonious world by connecting people to nature. Whether farm, ranch, vineyard, or other nature-rich destination, both stewards and families are now poised to aid and learn from each other. Yonder’s purpose is to nurture the kinship between people, plants, animals, and all living things. Our mission is to champion a healthier and better tomorrow.”

And who wouldn’t go for some of that right now?