Teen's year-long quest to sleep outdoors coming to a close


It's almost been an entire year since Rudy Hummel has slept in a bed.

Last year, he set out on a personal quest to sleep outside for 365 nights to raise awareness and funds for people and animals who don't have homes. He's slept in 30 different places in the last year – a platform in a tree, a snow cave in his yard, a campground and even on a hotel balcony in Chicago.

The idea started with sleeping outside all summer, but when fall came he didn't want to give up. He slept outside, in a snow house, through Duluth's second-coldest and third-snowiest winter on record – on 76 of those nights, the temperature dropped below zero, the Duluth News Tribune says.

In early April, when spring started to roll in, his snow house began to melt. So he went back up to his tree platform, where he had to deal with the 50-mph winds and noisy nights. He used three sleeping bags and a quilt inside a one-person tent to keep warm, the Duluth News Tribune says.

And now, with just under a week to go, Hummel is inviting everyone to sleep outside on June 6, his final night outdoors, according to his website Snore Outdoors. He's asking people to do this to hopefully raise money and more awareness for his cause. He also wants people to share their experiences on the Snore Outdoors Facebook page.

He has been raising money through his website to support Habitat for Humanity and Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory. So far, his followers have donated more than $3,000, the Duluth News Tribune says. More recently, the Board of Directors at Hawk Ridge offered a $1,000 matching donation to Hummel's efforts if he can bring in at least $1,000 more in donations before June 6, Hummel wrote on his blog in May.

Not only has Hummel raised money to help people and animals, but he told the Duluth News Tribune that he's learned a lot about himself. He told the newspaper that his experience gave him empathy for the homeless and also gave him perspective on his place in the world.

“You think about a squirrel, or a bird at the bird feeder,” Hummel told the Duluth News Tribune. “We consider them visitors, yet they live here, and we’re just as much visitors as they are.”

Next Up


St. Cloud State blanked by UMass in national championship game

Minnesota had three teams in the Frozen Four but didn't claim the national title.

BLM mural in West St. Paul.

Minnesotan's fight to save his BLM mural gets international coverage

West St. Paul told Ryan Weyandt the art violates city code.

Alex Rodriguez

Reports: Alex Rodriguez part of group finalizing deal to buy Wolves, Lynx

The former MLB will become part-owner of the Wolves and Lynx.

snow, slush (submitted photo, ok to use)

Accumulating snow expected in parts of Minnesota on Monday

Far northwestern Minnesota stands the best chance for higher snow totals.

Screen Shot 2021-04-10 at 1.53.51 PM

Police looking for 'person of interest' in connection to woman's killing

The public is advised to avoid approaching him and to call 911.

covid, vaccine

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Saturday, April 10

Cases and hospitalizations have been on the rise in Minnesota.

Gabe Kalscheur

Gabe Kalscheur announces he's transferring to Iowa State

The former Gopher guard entered the transfer portal last month.


Asked about restrictions, Walz says Minnesota is in a 'hold pattern'

Meanwhile, the governor of Michigan is urging people to stay home to slow the spread.

walz and zapko

Watch: Beloved MN sign language interpreter profiled on Today Show

Nic Zapka's work made her an internet celebrity last year.

White Bear Lake Area High School

White Bear Lake students hold walkout over racist social media comments

School officials are investigating the anonymous Instagram account.