We had the good fortune of connecting with Cody Bliss and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Cody, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
Since the dawn of mankind, humans have evolved and grew accustomed to a life spent outdoors. We learned to socialize, love, grieve, and survive beneath the trees, through changing seasons, and alongside the sights and sounds of nature. In short, our brains as we know them today were hardwired in these natural environments but are now being asked to perform in our fast-paced, modern world. Fast forward to today and the majority of “civilized” societies live within the constraints and security of four walls and a roof. We work inside, eat inside, sleep inside and virtually spend the majority of our lives indoors. Add in the extra bonus of increased screen time, distractions, advertisements and we are left with a population that is utterly disconnected from the natural world. As a result, we see more people suffering from anxiety, obesity, mental fatigue and increased diseases. Enter, Beyond the Map. At first glance, our company appears to be nothing more than an adventure travel company, however, anyone who has traveled with us will tell you that what we are offering is about more than travel and recreation. When we set out to start our company, we had two primary objectives. The first was to provide opportunities for folks to fall in love with these natural locations so they would in turn want to protect and care for these places. The second was to use outdoor recreation and travel as a vehicle for people to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and to return to more simple pleasures and positive emotions such as gratitude and personal growth.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Our business is our passion. What we now do professionally, we once did in our spare time for friends and family. For us, it is a deep and innate desire to share wonderful adventure travel experiences with others. When something is done because the love and desire is the driving force, then the services will also reflect that. I imagine when you ask “was it easy” that not a single person responds with a “yes”! Owning a business, taking risks, leaving behind societal norms, not knowing if there will be business each month- none of that is easy when compared to the security of a typical job. So no, building our business has not been easy and will continually present us with new challenges. It is the passion and our belief in the services that we offer that propel us forward.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
One week is a ton of time to get in our favorite spots! After getting off the plane we would head out to get dinner at The Field and if we were lucky enough, it would be Wednesday which means HOT ROD (Rod Stewart impersonator). We’d follow it up with a local brew at LauderAle. The next morning we would catch sunrise during a run at TY park before heading to the Alchemist for breakfast and coffee. We would then grab our bikes and head out to Markham Park for a mountain bike ride or head over to Project Rock to go rock climbing. The next day we would pack the car and head to Kings Landing for an epic paddle through Rock Springs Run.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Our accomplishments are only because of the selfless acts of others. Whether it be a teacher from Highschool or a stranger off the street. We owe much of our success to a dear friend and mentor named Gabriella Boll. She is the owner and operator of an environmental education company called Build-A-Field-Trip.

Website: www.beyondthemap.org
Instagram: www.instagram.com/beyondthemaptravel
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/beyondthemap
Facebook: www.facebook.com/beyondthemaptravel
Youtube: https://youtu.be/u_pqrOYTy_o

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