Finding Adventure

The Ultimate Race
As we speak, 70 mushers and their dog teams have embarked on the 42nd running of the worlds’ toughest race. This year the race started in Willow and will end in Nome, Alaska. The course is 1,000 miles long — teams rely on skill, strength and endurance in harsh terrain and unpredictable weather. Check out the Iditarod.com to learn more about this years’ ultimate race.

Finding Adventure Everyday
Being open to the possibility of outdoor adventure no matter where you live makes life more exciting. Sure you might think it’s easy for us to say, since we live near the New River Gorge. But just like most people, we spend many of our days inside, working. And when the snow is blowing sideways and the temperatures aren’t that appealing, it just seems easier to stay inside.

In our neck of the woods, hiking is a great go-to whether on skis, a bike or your own two feet. But you don’t have to plan a big outing to find outdoor adventure in your town. Time outside should simply connect us to the natural world. Exploring the spaces around us allows us to take a break from the daily grind, to reset and recharge our spirits.

No matter where you live; rural or urban, you can find fun outside and in any season. Often times something as simple as a walk around the neighborhood, sledding, making snow angels or tossing snowballs provides a good time outside.

Here is our top-five list of snow fun-ventures with really no purpose other than to make you smile. While these are great activities to do with kids, they aren’t required:

Snow Graffitti: Load up squirt bottles with colored water and paint the snow any which way you want.

Snow People: Raid the vegetable drawer and build a village.

Snow Ball Fight: Make gobs of snowballs, build walls, run, dodge and throw.

Snow Angels: Lay down and spread your wings.

Cookies and Hot Chocolate: Whether you make these yourself or stop by your favorite bakery/coffee shop, hot chocolate and cookies make everyone happy on a cold day.

For days when you are climbing the walls and are ready to venture out into the wild urban world, we’ve come up with our top 3 urban-ventures in our favorite cities:

Washington, DC: Billy Goat Trail at Potomac Falls – be ready to scramble and enjoy the river up close. This rough and tough trail will have you climbing and scrambling over big rocks. Wear good shoes and layer appropriately for the weather. For more info check out the NPS Great Falls website.

Cincinnati, OH: Find treasures from the Ordovician period, 425 million years ago. Cincinnati is full of fossils from ancient sea life. Check out the dry dredgers web site for detailed info on where you can hike and collect fossils.

Columbus, OH: You can slow down and breathe easy as you follow the Sciota River along the biking and walking paths that criss-cross the city. Check out the Ohio Metro Parks web page for more info.

All good adventures start with a sense of wonder and play, and most good times happen when we aren’t expecting them. One thing for sure there is no outside adventure waiting for us on the couch. Keep your cold weather gear handy in the next few weeks — a quick jaunt can make the difference between a gray day inside and a great day outside. As we turn the last corner out of winter, building in moments of fun everyday is what keeps your spirits up.

‘We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.’
Jawaharlal Nehru

HyperLinks:

NPS Great Falls Web Page.

http://www.nps.gov/grfa/index.htm

dry dredgers web site

Ohio Metro Parks Web

http://www.metroparks.net

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