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Rachel Helgeson

Writing and outdoor adventures have thrilled Rachel since she was little. At just four years old, she wrote her first story about turkey hunting with her dad in southern Wisconsin where she was born. Since then she’s found ways to pay the bills by combining her favorite hobbies, having authored countless articles for national outdoor publications and travel blogs. In 2018 Rachel graduated with a bachelor’s in journalism and multimedia communication from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, working as a news reporter and photographer in western Wisconsin right out of college. She wrote a little of everything including breaking public safety news, education, local and state government, and even followed a county criminal case or two that made national news. Now, she’s content with writing and editing Austin Adventure’s copy which feeds her daydreams of the many destinations she has yet to visit, and helping administratively where needed.

 

Rachel is always adding adventures to her bucket list and lives by the philosophy that each day should be a story worth telling. By the age of 22, Rachel had lived in Ireland and Italy and ventured through 14 countries. A few of Rachel’s favorite travel memories include canoeing in the Canadian wilderness, skiing in the French Alps, building small houses in Mexico for families in need, and laying on the beach in Athens when she was supposed to be studying. There was also that one time she almost got stuck while spelunking underneath Budapest…

When did you first catch the travel bug?

I was about six or seven years old, my family took a two-week road trip out west and hit Minnesota, North and South Dakota, Wyoming, and Montana. It was my first time traveling far away from Wisconsin where I was raised and seeing the mountains when we drove past the Grand Tetons. I fell in love with travel and of course that mountain range, an image which I now have tattooed on my arm. I guess I’m dedicated for life!

What are your favorite outdoor activities?

Hunting, camping, backcountry hiking, photography, canoeing, and hammocking are my common go-tos when I want to be outdoors, in no particular order. In the winter I’ll slip in skiing and snowshoeing when I can.

 

 

What is your favorite historical site, castle, museum, etc.?

The most impactful historical site I’ve visited is the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp near Oświęcim, Poland. I had the opportunity to enter a bunkhouse where prisoners had been kept at night. I distinctly remember placing my hand on one of the “beds”, which was really just a wooden shelf, and feeling like I could hear a thousand stories of what happened there through the touch.

What’s your favorite vacation destination(s)?

Anywhere I can have a good view of the mountains and a decent campsite.

What are your passions?

People-watching in airports (without being creepy), cheering loudly when the Green Bay Packers score, pretending I’m good at cooking even though I’ve literally burned rice, and learning about the world by being consistently curious.

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