A colorful carpet of leaves, multiplying among the ground each fall, may signify the end of a fleeting season. One that often serves as a memorable backdrop for numerous outdoor experiences. Unfortunately for many however, it also signifies the transition to a life indoors, where bikes, backpacks, boats, and hiking shoes are put into hiding, waiting to be resurrected at spring’s first thaw.
While time by the fire with good food, friends, and family will always be a welcome tradition, we encourage you to keep venturing outside this time of year. With the right attitude (and let’s face it, the right gear), you may be able to escape winter’s scary grasp, which is often found in the deepest depths of that crack between the 2nd and 3rd cushion of your sofa. Best to get outside now, before it takes over for good!
Go skiing or snowboarding
Just make sure to pick one, and be an absolute snob about it…ok just kidding. Nothing says winter like carving fresh turns down a white mountain, whether on a board or skis. This can be a little pricey for those without the gear, or season passes, but it will always be a great way to appreciate the beauty of being active during the colder months.
Winter produces a drastically different landscape, even along the familiar trails you are used to hiking in the spring, summer, and fall. Revisit an area in winter, and it will be like seeing it for the first time all over again.
Go rock climbing
Winter is often a great season for climbing outdoors-less heat and humidity means more friction. In fact, most bouldering devotees save their biggest projects for sending during the winter months.
Watch a sunrise
Some of the best sunrises can be seen in winter. Snowscapes glisten beautifully in early morning light, and the colder temperatures often leave rivers and lakes with a mystical, foggy appearance. Even better, daylight savings time means you don’t have to get up as early to see it!
Go ice climbing
If you like cold environments, beautiful scenery, scary climbing, and are a little bit crazy, ice climbing may be your next calling!
Go for a trail run
Snow covered trails, and steam producing breaths are an exhilarating way to experience your runs in the winter.
Go snowshoeing or cross-country skiing
This is a great way to surround yourself in nature, and is great winter exercise for those who live in places with consistent snow fall, and wilderness to explore.
Flatwater paddling is often beautiful from December through March. Less chance of storms and no need to worry about biting insects. A firm understanding about the dangers of cold water submersion are a must however, as are some critical pieces of gear (wetsuits/drysuits, dry tops, etc.).
Casting a line is an art form that exists throughout every season. Don’t forget the precautions needed for being on, or near cold bodies of water. Always dress for a potential submersion, not just for the outside air temperature.
Go road, or mountain-biking
Snow covered trails are often a great way to get your sloppy trail fix, without the damaging erosion effects of riding muddy trails in spring & summer.