Welcome to Forest Tourist!

Hello! My name is India, and I’m the human behind Forest Tourist. I’m a college graduate from Florida State University with a degree in English and a minor in Environmental Science and Policy. Like most others trying to make their way in the world, I constantly find myself facing the same question: What inspires me? I recently discovered that the outdoors are a huge source of inspiration for me, and that discovery dramatically changed my life for the better. This blog is a way for me to share my inspirations, discover what drives me, and fight for the things that I love. 

This blog is primarily about my main passions: climbing, outdoor advocacy and conservation, and healthy living. Come along with me as I pursue adventure and encourage you to do the same.

Photo by John Miller.
How I Found My Love for the Outdoors:

As a child I had an intense fascination with nature but always felt like it was a world that existed separate from my own. The Floridian landscape that surrounded me during my childhood never captivated my imagination or dared me to push my boundaries; instead I was turned off by the intense heat and endless mosquitos. That all changed when I went on my first real outdoor expedition to Utah at the age of 18 and discovered the unbelievable beauty of the outdoors. I was in awe of the sights around me and of what my body was capable of, and I vowed to take my newfound appreciation of nature and apply it to my surrounds no matter where I was (even in muggy ole Florida). Ever since then I’ve pushed myself to get outside every chance I get and to experience as much of the great outdoors as I possibly can.

In 2016 I left my tiny hometown in central Florida and moved north to Tallahassee to attend Florida State University. It was there that I discovered rock climbing, the sport that slowly consumed me and ultimately changed my entire lifestyle. Every weekend I gathered my camping gear and jumped into a car full of friends to explore the Southeast in search of places to climb. I frequented outdoor spaces in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina, and Kentucky, and my overall appreciation for public lands grew.

When I graduated from college I knew that I needed to leave Florida, so I headed west to find a new adventure. I spent the summer of 2018 working as a guide in Southern Wyoming, where I took people hiking, biking, climbing, and on a high ropes course. I loved watching people discover the outdoors for the first time and experience something new – it reminded me of how I felt during that fateful trip to Utah when I was a teenager.

After working a season in Wyoming I hit the road again, and relocated to Salt Lake City. My heart has been drawn to Utah for so many years, and it feels right to finally call it home.

Utah's National Parks // Forest Tourist
Photo by John Miller.

Now that I have such a deep passion for the outdoors, I am motivated to share it with others. I no longer take people out in nature for a living, but I hope that this blog sparks a curiosity within you to explore the unknown. Let’s fall in love with public lands together, and learn how to do our best to be kind to Mother Nature during our adventures.