May 28, 2024
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May 28, 2024
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Camping in the National Parks, Kosher-Style

An Interview with Yehudah Nosenchuk of Chuckie’s Kosher Adventure Tours

Yehudah and Minnie Nosenchuk run organized camping trips to nature destinations throughout the country. Here, a Q&A with every question you might ask before taking a trip with them.

How did you get started?

My wife has been camping with her family ever since she was a child. When we met, she spoke a lot about her travel experiences. The closest thing to camping that I had ever experienced was summer camp in the mountains of Pennsylvania and that was not something I was interested in as an adult. We were only married a short while when we joined her family on a camping trip to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. One week was all it took to get me hooked. By now, we have covered a good majority of the National Parks across the US and Canada.

Which is your favorite National Park?

Each National Park is so unique. Acadia NP, Maine has magnificent coasts, Redwood NP has majestic trees, Yellowstone has unparalleled natural wonders including geysers and other geothermal features and I have favorite parts in each park. However, the most awe-inspiring beauty I have ever seen is the Grand Canyon; it is just breathtaking! My two favorite hikes are Skyview in Cape Breton NP, Nova Scotia and Lymph, Bear and Dream Lakes in Rocky Mountain NP, Colorado.

Why camping?

Camping is one of the best ways to immerse yourself and experience the nature up close. Gazing at a sky full of stars, relaxing at a campfire after an exhilarating day, and awaking to the sound of wind rustling through the trees and birds chirping. While camping, many of the distractions that accompany our daily lives are absent. Limited electricity, Internet and phone service and other distractions will allow you to spend uninterrupted quality time with your group.

Why did you start Chuckie’s Kosher Adventures?

Aside from being popular vacation destinations, these outstanding natural wonders foster an appreciation of Hashem’s creation, and are very uplifting. Traveling to these destinations as a frum Jew, however, can be challenging. Remote locations with no availability of kosher food and minyanim prevent many observant Jews from being able to enjoy them. People are constantly telling us, “We’d love to go to these places but what about a minyan? Food? How do you get all the gear there?” Our service helps to alleviate all of these concerns and make camping and visiting National Parks easy and accessible to the frum camper.

There are lots of travel services out there. What make yours different?

Our model is very unique. We allow you to have privacy as a family or group while still enjoying the convenience of being a part of a group. Each family or group stays on their own campsite with their own picnic table and fire pit. Your hosts (us) stay on a large host site where minyanim take place and the meals are cooked. You are free to take your meals to your private campsite to enjoy. You can also make your own private campfire. The hardest part about camping is schlepping the gear and cooking in the outdoors. We take care of that for you. You will arrive to a campsite that is set up with all the gear you will need and there’s no need for you to worry about the meals – we’ve got them covered. We attract all different types of groups: families with young children, retired couples, men whose wives are not as adventurous as they are and women whose husbands are not adventurous.

What is your busiest season?

The summer is the most popular time to travel, but we run trips throughout the year. In the winter, we choose destinations that are in warmer climates and have some cabin-based trips with heating. For example, we have a cabin trip scheduled to Grand Canyon/Sedona over Thanksgiving weekend. The trip will include a Shabbos. We will be staying in beautiful cabins right outside of Sedona. This will be a good opportunity for people who love nature, but are not ready to rough it out in a tent.

One last question, is there something you wish everyone knew?

Yes, I wish everyone had the opportunity to take advantage of the amazing wonder, beauty and the wholesome experience that one has when visiting nature.

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