Outdoor Notebooks

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I often tote around a notebook to write reminders or jot down some thought or observation.   I have memo pads (Clairefontaine) in the car for grocery and errand reminders. I have one in my bag (Rhodia-No. 12) for work lists and ideas.   But I also have one I pack around with me outdoors.   It is a Quo Vadis “Notes Club” that I picked off our samples shelf in the office.   France had sent us a few to consider, and while we ended up not putting them in the catalog, I liked their sturdiness, the thick elastic band and the nice heft of their feel.   Here’s the link to their page on the French site.  

I use Club Notes as my outdoor notebook.   It is primarily for observations walking along the beach but I use it for backyard nature, too. I keep notes of the number and whereabouts of piping plovers, osprey nests and chicks; where on the beach hermit crabs tend to appear, a record of the robin family in my rose trellis, the time hummers appear for mimosa blossoms; and when I spot my first wooly worm, and what kind of winter they predict.

Who else keeps an outdoor log or likes to write outdoors?   What kind of notebook or journal do you use?

(Any comments I receive will be entered to win the last “Notes Club” we have in the office.)




21 thoughts on “Outdoor Notebooks

  1. I recently discovered the Field Notes waterproof notepads and use those quite a bit at the beach – gave one to my niece and nephew and they were amazed that you could drop them in the pool (on purpose, did I mention they’re 7 and 8?) and still write on them. Other times I just carry a webnotebook or something smallish to write in. the Club Notes look nice. Pick me, please?????? LOL.

  2. I don’t know that I technically have an outdoor notebook but I’m constantly on the search to find the one “perfect” book that I can tote around to scribble just random stuff in. I have yet to find one that fits the bill hence the numerous partially scribbled in notebooks etc. just hanging around 🙂 These notes clubs look fantastic though.

  3. I have two notebooks I use outdoors.

    Firstly a garden notebook – a Clairefontaine 5mm grid exercise book – it started out as a place to “design” the garden and now has annual sketches of where various things are planted in the vegetable patch and where the hyacinths, daffs and crocus bulbs are so we don’t dig them up. It’s also used to remind us what needs to done and when. We are not natural gardeners, we need reminders!!!

    Secondly I have a photography notebook – for noting down all the settings I use for each photograph I take. Yes, that is all contained in the digital photograph file, but it isn’t recorded on the film I prefer to use 🙂 This is currently a Calepino notebook – perfect for shoving in my pocket.

  4. I am ever in the quest of a journal/notebook that is easy to close down and open back up when a breeze or wind makes necessary. Does that make me a “long-winded” writer?

  5. I often write notes on my lunch break outside, sitting in the shade, people and dog watching. I often write about the weather, my day, the dogs at the dog park, and random other bits of information. The Club Notes look perfect for this purpose!

  6. I just moved a few weeks ago from a most awful place. I hardly ever went outside due to weather and people. I’ve now moved to paradise and have been outside more in just a few weeks than I had in months before. I even bought a bike with which I commute daily! There are so many beautiful places here to stop and write/sketch/muse under a tree. Now all I need is a lovely notebook!

  7. I like to sit in the backyard with the cat and dog nearby to journal or sketch. The notebook I just finished was from Barnes & Noble, and I have just started a Quo Vadis artist collection Matisse notebook.

  8. In Florida the weather oddly enough is usually “too” something to write much outside but I take advantage every chance that I get. Too hot, too wet, too bright, too many mosquitos.

  9. Not really much of an outside writer I’m afraid but I do like my Clairefontaine and Picadilly notebooks. I love my sketchbooks too but you just want to know about notebooks, right? ^_~

  10. I’ve used everything from staples branded journals to moleskines to keep track of geocaches and bird descriptions to look up later.

  11. For a few years, I wrote outside a lot when the weather allowed. My jottings included sketches and (read this in a book somewhere) wind direction and other such markers and always, always, comments on the weather. I needed a notebook that wasn’t too large or heavy, yet larger than pocket-sized, with unlined pages. For the most part, I used Moleskines, although various sketchbooks fitting these criteria also had their turn.

  12. I used to have a waterproof note pad which had a coating on the pages which I used to record field notes. However, it only allowed me to use a pencil. I can’t remember the brand though.

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