What they do: Connect rural landowners with campers looking for a spot to pitch a tent that’s off the beaten trail

Why it’s cool: If you’ve ever tried to book a campsite at a popular Northern California campground in the busy summer months, you understand how frustrating the experience can be.

As travel writer Betsy Malloy put it in a recent post on tripsavvy.com: “you have to plan farther ahead for next year’s camping trip than you would for an African safari.”

San Francisco-based Hipcamp is trying to take the headache out of planning a camping trip by turning more places into campgrounds.

Sure, you can use the site to book a space at a public park, but you can also reserve a corner of a private ranch, vineyard, farm or rural backyard.

“It just makes getting outside a lot simpler for people, and in many cases, more relevant,” said founder and CEO Alyssa Ravasio.

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