Oh, winter has a way with me. On one hand, the homebody & introvert in me lllllloves to hibernate. January and February you can easily find me sipping coffee and tea all day under piles of blankets on the couch.
However, it’s been so cold the last week, that today when the sun came out and it was suddenly 40 degrees instead of -1; it prematurely set me in spring time mode.
It’s not time yet, brain. (And yeah, I’m sad about it.)
When I hear certain songs or artists (those floaty, catchy Creedence hits and twangy Lynyrd Skynyrd tunes…) come on the radio at work it automatically sends my thoughts off to warmer days, drinking a beer on the Black River, grilling dinner every night, sleeping with the windows open. It gets me longing for those camping and backpacking trips.
And then the reality hits that it’s only January 18th, and spring is actually months away. What can we do when it’s just too cold outside? Let me count the things.
1) Organize and admire all camping and hiking gear. Like 20 times.
I can’t tell you how many times in my head in the last few weeks I have “packed” my pack for #LHX2018. I still have a small list of things I want/need to get (…mostly food, not gonna lie) for this trip but also the few things we still actually NEED for Mt. Whitney.
Organizing all of my gear makes me happy. And also no matter how many times I do it, I can find SOMETHING I can live without, and donate to Gear Forward.
2) Watch some hiking channels on YouTube. My favorites from last year:
Dixie at Homemade Wanderlust. Her channel features both of her thru hikes on the AT and PCT, gear reviews and Q&A’s. She is currently preparing for the CDT to complete her Triple Crown and her beau Kyle Rohrig (author of Lost on the Appalachian Trail) is joining her!
Adventure Archives. I love these guys. They are 2 brothers, a cousin and a childhood best friend. Their videos and the aesthetic they present strikes a chord with me, and their dynamic and storytelling is so wonderful to watch. You feel like you are part of their journey. They will take you on many adventures; from their home state in Ohio, to Japan, to Yosemite. They also self produce/edit and create an original soundtrack for their episodes. HIGHLY recommend!
3) Walk on the treadmill. (Ugh.) Attempt to maximize experience by walking on the treadmill WHILE watching hiking videos. For extra faux-authenticity, strap a pack on and load it with roughly 27 lbs. Feel miserable/bored. Proceed to #4.
4) Look at your gear again.
5) Look at gear online. My favorite places to shop outdoor equipment online:
6) Scroll through your past Instagram posts and cry a little while you reminisce adventures past.
7) Make a list of your future adventure goals! I love making lists (…heh) and seeing my plans written out make them feel more attainable. What do you want to do this year? Where do you want to go?
I hope this list has been helpful, and gives you a few things to try when you’re feeling stir crazy this winter! We will make it through!!!