It’s finally October, and scary movie season is in full bloom. Michael Myers is making his big-screen return, The Shining is streaming on Netflix and Disney Channel will be playing the Halloweentown series on an infinite loop any day now.
But you know what’s scarier than all of that? The woods. Forrests are either the setting or the villain—or, if you’re watching The Happening, both—in about 90 percent of all horror films, and the real life version isn’t all that much nicer.
Every fall, cooling temperatures and non-green leaves convince millions of city dwellers to fill up their Yeti coolers, browse REI for an overpriced tent and plan a camping trip. But you know who else is making plans this autumn? The 300,000 ticks that infect Americans with Lyme disease every year—they’re making plans. Also, the 750,000 black bears that live in forests across the North America—they’ve definitely got some plans too.
Here’s the point: a camping trip can be a lot more frightening than a Halloweentown marathon, but there are some workarounds. Thanks to glamping (a deeply uncool sandwiching of the words “glamour” and “camping”), you can enjoy your outdoors adventure from the comfort of a luxury treehouse, an electric log cabin or even a fully furnished Conestoga wagon.
And this playlist is here to help. Think of it as the musical version of an opulent, woodland retreat: jam-packed with Americana, country and mountain-folk influences, it’s got all the trappings of a true wilderness escape, but with just enough polish and shine to keep you feeling pampered. It’s a soundtrack for the elitist explorers—the ones who want to watch Netflix while they stargaze and drink LaCroix with their campfire weenies.
So pack up your $14 granola, throw on a Patagonia sweater and plug this playlist into the aux. It’s time to embrace nature. Sort of.