Craft Beer Travelers Top 5 Memorable Moments of 2022

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One would think this would be an easy post to write. After all, it’s just a simple list of our favorite places. Well, therein lies the problem: a list of our favorites. Yet, this simple list has turned into a colossal undertaking; one with many words, resulting in anything but a simple list.

Another problem with this favorites list is the word, “favorite.” Hate is a strong word, but I think I can honestly say there’s one question I hate – and ironically, I still find myself asking the same question of others. That question? “What is your favorite…?”

paddleboard and beer top 5 adventures
How do you choose favorites when there are so many beers and adventures?

Both Ken and I struggle with finding an answer to this question, especially when it comes to breweries. But even when it comes to trails, places to camp, cities, states, and well, pretty much everything. There’s so many fantastic breweries, breath-taking trails, and inspiring and jaw-dropping places, it’s difficult to choose favorites.

So in honor of today’s world of people with very limited attention span when it comes to the written word (myself included), a list is what you’ll get. A list with a link to a story if we have one published (if there’s not a story published, it might be forthcoming, so keep checking back), and a link to the place itself if we don’t. That way, the power for more or less words is in your control.

And in honor of my hatred for the word “favorite” this list will consist of places and events that stood out to us last year, most often because of the people that experienced it with us. Because in the end, the events and places we love are because of the people in that specific moment in time.

So, maybe instead of asking, “What’s your favorite?” it should be “What were your memorable moments?” Keeping in mind, memorable moments are fluid.


Top 5 (or 6) Memorable Numbers of 2022

Ken and a completed map on RV for top 5 numbers
We hit our 49th state in 2022!
  • 160 breweries, taprooms, and more (this number never seems to decrease)
  • 45 different places we stayed (campgrounds, driveways, airbnbs, RV parks, Harvest Hosts sites and more)
  • 25 years of marriage (celebrated July 5, 2022)
  • 3 months in Bigfork, Montana (coming back to a place we know), and 3 new states (all we have left is Alaska)
  • 2 months renting a room in Salida (instead of staying in RAIF – Might there be a new home base for us soon?)
  • 1 tire blowout and 1 injured shoulder(definitely not favorites)

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Top 5 Memorable Stout Life Stories of 2022

camper on country road with silos while visiting Nebraska breweries
RAIF in nowhere Nebraska

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Top 5 Memorable Craft Beer Travel & Adventure Podcasts of 2022

Paul April Ken Strange Craft top 5 podcast
Hangin’ with the Colorado Beer Guy at Strange Craft

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Top 5 Memorable Breweries of 2022

CCD peeps brewing at Oskar Blues Brevard top 5 breweries
Brewing beer at Oskar Blues in Brevard for CCD

Top 5 Favorite Standing Colorado Breweries

Home is Colorado, there’s no way in hell we can choose one brewery from Colorado; therefore, Colorado has its own category. You would think narrowing the choices down to one state would help…Nope! Also, these are our standing favorites. Anyone want to try and bump somebody out?

You’ve gotta lot of work to do in order to do so. And yes, we know the fifth spot on our list isn’t technically a brewery, but they are one of our return-to-again-and-again places, with a phenomenal beer list, and terrific people!

Strange Craft Strange With Brew Team
Brewing beer with friends for CCD at Strange Craft Beer Company.
  • Guanella Pass Brewery (Georgetown and Empire, CO) – These quaint little mountain towns, both just off of I-70 and close to the front range, not only have great beer, but their beertenders are the absolute best. We say it often, breweries are about the people, and Guanella Pass has some of the best people on this planet.
  • Broken Compass Brewing (Breckenridge, CO) – Breckenridge, Colorado! Do I really have to say more? Fine! Using old ski lifts as chairs and views of the mountains, and with a coconut porter to die for, this place is home anytime we are in the mountains. Actually, we often make a trip to Breck, just for this brewery.
  • Woods Boss Brewing Company (Denver, CO) – Can’t get to the mountains today? Hit up Woods Boss instead. Crafted after the beauty of the mountains, the ambiance will draw you in, and the 15 some taps with some of the best beers in Denver will keep you there for hours. Plus, Jordan, the owner, is an actual woods boss.
  • Strange Craft Beer Company (Denver, CO) – Tim, owner, and OG in the Denver beer scene has created a unique space in the middle of an industrial neighborhood smack right next to I-25. While the neighborhood may not be inviting, the beer, the brewery, and the people, definitely are.
  • Jake’s Brew Bar (Littleton, CO) – One of the best beer bars on the planet. From the moment you walk into this place on Main Street in suburban Littleton, you’ll feel home. It’s cozy taproom is stock full of pillows on the benches, plenty of chairs to cozy up to the bar with, and some of the best taps in the nation. With food trucks out back to accompany the backyard patio, complete with fire pit, this is a place that if you visit once, you’ll know you’ll be back again.

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Top 5 Memorable Mountain Biking Areas of 2022

biking in brevard NC top 5 biking
CCD peeps biking in Brevard, NC

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Top 5 Memorable Adventurous Places (Besides MTB Trails) of 2022

friends snowboarding Monarch Mtn top 5 adventures
Snowboarding at Monarch Mountain

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Top 5 Memorable Camp Spots of 2022

Perkins Park Campground MI top 5 camping
Perkins Park on Independence Lake in Michigan

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Top 5 Memorable Beer Events of 2022

beer fest fun in Salida top 5 beer events
With friends at Brewer’s Rendezvous in Salida

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Looking Ahead to 2023

Now that we’ve looked back on 2022, it’s time to look ahead to 2023! At the end of 2022 (going into Jan 2023), we made the decision to sell our long-time family home in Denver, Colorado. Of course, there’s a bit of melancholy surrounding that, but in all honesty, it was time, and we are less tethered than ever to a physical structure!

Pishna family in front of home in Denver
Us and our kids in front of our family home for one last time.

Combine that with being on the road for five years this summer, it’s time to expand our travels. While we don’t have any plans of RVing in other countries, we do have plans of visiting them.

Starting first with Medellín, Columbia. Our tickets are booked. Our apartment is rented. Stay tuned for adventures, lessons, and much more from South America. Yes, it’s only a month, but it’s the beginning of so much more.

CCD 2022 Goofy Group Pic
Camp Carpe Diem 2022 in Brevard, NC

We’re back at it with Camp Carpe Diem 2023 (CCD), the coolest adult camp ever! This is our 3rd annual event and will be held in Kalispell, Montana, September 28 – October 1, 2023. If you’re an RVer or traveler and love meeting new friends on the road, this is the event of the year! We also focus on mountain biking, craft beer, photography, hiking, and more.

We’re heading to CBC (the Craft Brewers Conference) in Nashville in May. This is the largest conference in the industry, and thanks to Malteurop Malting Co (on of our clients) we get to go represent them and us, all while drinking some great beer, learning great shit, and meeting great people!

What will you all be doing in 2023?

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A Few Words of Wisdom for 2023

“I’m a big believer in winging it. I’m a big believer that you’re never going to find perfect city travel experience or the perfect meal without a constant willingness to experience a bad one. Letting the happy accident happen is what a lot of vacation itineraries miss, I think, and I’m always trying to push people to allow those things to happen rather than stick to some rigid itinerary.” (Anthony Bourdain)

And of course, this one, from Mr. Bourdain, himself, as well…

“Drink heavily with locals whenever possible.”


WANT MORE?

Previous Year’s Favorites

Check out our favorites from last year, as well as 2020, 2019 and 2018.


Sign up for our newsletter.

At the bottom of every Stout Life newsletter, you’ll find all the places we went for that week, including camping, MTB trails, breweries, dive bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and more. So if you want a friend’s advice on what to eat, where to drink, trails to ride, where to camp, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter. You’ll get all that and more delivered straight to your inbox.

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Tips on how to find the best place to camp.

There’s so many places to stay overnight. Here’s our take on how to find some of the best places.


Tips on how to find the best breweries and biking trails.

With so many breweries to choose from, how do you choose? We’ve got some tips for you on that plus an entire map of breweries paired up close to mountain biking trails.

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