You don’t have to become a skydiver, climb Half Dome in Yosemite, or swim with sharks on the Great Barrier Reef to get your recommended dose of adventure. Here are 5 simple ideas that anyone can do outdoors this first weekend in August:
- Slow Down. You probably make the same commute to work and back every day. You drive through your neighborhood, through a city or two, park, reverse, and repeat. If you are only experiencing your daily environment through the air-conditioned bubble of a 2-ton driving machine, you are missing almost everything! Start within a 1-mile radius of where you live, whether it’s in a bustling metropolis or rolling countryside, get out of the car, and on foot. Spend 1-2 hours checking out the intricacies of your locale. It will look completely different and foreign if you haven’t done this before. Raining? Too sunny? Toughen up, snowflake. Your ancestors would be embarrassed of you if you can’t handle a couple hours of whatever-the-weather-may-be.
- Find a Trail. See where it goes. There are trails EVERYWHERE. Urbanites: find a trail through your city, walk it or ride it with no care as to where you might end up. Your smart phone can help you find the way back. Look for animals, bugs, unique structures. Be a kid! Or take one with you if you need help remembering how to appreciate the little things. Bring back a cool rock. We like alltrails.com for planning.
- Get Wet. Keep that super skimpy bathing suit tucked away at home, but find some water: a river, pond, lake, beach, and go check it out. There’s something about being around water that helps you smile and forget about the pressures of the daily grind. There is water everywhere. Find it. Spend time around it. Looking for a little more activity? Try stand up paddle boarding, or grab a tube and go for a float.
- Stars! Nothing makes you feel smaller than lying on your back and staring deep into the universe. Urbanites: pack up and get out of the city. The fewer lights, the better. Find some grass, a comfortable rock, or the back of a pickup, give your eyes several minutes to adjust, and take in the wonder of the night sky. No telescope? No problem. There is plenty to see with the naked eye. No need to rush out at dusk. The best viewing doesn’t begin until 2 hours after sunset. Check here for the astronomical highlights of the week.
- Parks. Whether it’s a local city park, or one of the fantastic National Parks throughout the US (or in any other country), parks are great! On the simple side, make a picnic lunch or go for a hike. More adventure? Search for “dispersed camping” in your local forest or wilderness area, pack light, and stay out of cell service for at least 12 hours. Want to try something new? Check out slacklining. Most local ordinances allow this fun, healthy test of balance as you walk across a tensioned piece of flat webbing between two trees. You can pick up a basic slackline kit at REI for under $100.
Remember: all of these ideas are better enjoyed with friends or family! Take someone with you who wouldn’t go on their own, and enjoy a few hours of summer before it’s gone!
Apollo Energy Gum is all about supporting you to get the most out of life. Often, this means pursuing a career, athletic or physical interest, or being a great parent. But remember to step back, go with the flow, and enjoy a moment without the pressures you put yourself through every day. Don’t worry. We’ll be here whenever you need us!