The great outdoor adventure at my backdoor

Posted by kentang123 at September 26, 2016

Category: Outdoors

I am turning the corner and I am only a few steps away from my regular early morning adventure. My imagination takes flight as I make my way through the overgrown forest trail, the vista opens up and I can see the mighty river take a slow turn around the bend. Suddenly I am no longer in the middle of suburbia but
Deep in the Amazon basin, in a premium spot, and my morning walk has now a changed to getting to the safe water hole.
It’s been raining heavily and the river is brown and loaded with what she has claimed hers along the way. The sweet smell of the forest floor fills my nostrils I am breathing heavily unlike a normal hike; doctor’s orders keep the heart rate up for 20-30 minutes 5 times a week. For now it’s not exercise it’s getting to a safe spot to set up tent for the night.

Down to the short strip along river there’s a steep cliff on the side catching the morning sun, I wonder if any on the locals are watching my adventure unfold from the cliff.
I feel that I am cheating myself with the brisk walk, not taking it all in almost rushing past the natural beauty. Doctor’s orders. Over the little creek that only gurgles after a good downpour spilling its precious load into the brown giant, the river gobbles up the creek’s offering.

It’s nearly over and I can feel my heart sink as I know that soon there will be a parking lot at the end of a cul-de-sac for those that choose to drive here. As I finish the last few steps in the wilderness I can see the familiar yellow road sign of a reindeer. Reindeer are not native around here and according to legend were introduced for hunting a century ago and some still remain post the urban sprawl. What a load of rubbish I have never seen or heard of anyone spotting reindeer.

Then I see him first, a young bull followed by about seven of his family. I slow down the doctor will have to understand this is not an everyday occurrence. They look at me with no sense of fear not shying away on my accord. They are moving towards my retreat I give them a wide berth, I know nothing about reindeer but having hiked through many areas with animals you always give them the necessary respect. I have had the privilege of hiking through Africa and seeing an abundance of animals, but this was in my backyard 10 minutes walk from where my home claims it’s cramped position next to other homes.

They make no attempt to look back as they amble past as if my existence bears no relevance to theirs. Will anyone believe me do I care? In 2 hours I will be at work reliving the moment maybe I will tell someone maybe I won’t.

I now have a hike in the morning yes it’s short not like a well deserved weekend or break when I can roll up the sleeping bag and escape the grindstone, but it recharges me for the day and keeps me going till the next adventure.

Where is your spot close to home? Surely there is green patch somewhere where you can unleash the hiker, if only for a half hour. When I open the door I am going for one of my outdoor adventures.

This made me think why aren’t more people hiking? I am not talking about hardened hikers tackling the Paria Canyon, but just what is within a half an hour drive of the average town or city. There are literally thousands of walking trails scattered around America some are easy as an afternoon walk, to trails that will challenge your survival skills and fitness. I have recently introduced another friend to the joys of hiking but selling it as morning stroll, before long we were having in depth conversation about the merits of putting in a bit more work to see more of Mother Nature.

It was the taste that got my friend and I would like to share a few tips to get started:

o Do a scout around your own area for a walking trail you will be surprised how easy it is. Ask at the local authorities or at the local library.
o Don’t attempt something to tough. Start with something that won’t take more than an hour (always tell someone where you are going)
o Don’t buy expensive gear use runners/trainers for the first few short walks if you don’t want to invest in hiking boots.
o Now that you have the taste. Hiking will give more rewards the more effort you put in so attempt longer trails. Now is a good time to look at some more sturdy foot support and some basic gear.

Some basic hiking gear: (for a day trip staying on a marked trail)

o Backpack
o Good thick socks
o Hiking boots (Light weight will do)
o Water Bottle (filled)
o Sun protection
o Insect repellent
o Wide Brim hat
o Some dry food (trail mix, energy bars etc.)
o First aid kit
o Whistle (for drawing attention)
o Knife
o Flash light
o Matches

Walk in your hiking boots with a couple of shorter walks first. For your first trail pick a trail that is marked and not isolated there are plenty of these and they offer plenty of reward in terms of natural beauty.
Stay on the trail there is plenty of time to work your way up to more challenging trails but the golden rule is be safe.
Make sure that you plan your hike most hikes have a timeframe for completion make sure that you leave yourself enough time with a couple of hours for contingencies.
Obey the rules and treat Mother Nature with kindness she will reward if you respect her but punish harshly otherwise.

This will get you started but we are only scratching the surface and soon you will be looking for further challenges.

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