How To Enjoy The Great Outdoors

“To live as widely as possible, to train one’s curiosity like a high-spirited thoroughbred, hop on and gallop across the dense, sun-struck hills every day,” wrote poet Diane Ackerman once. This is the big affair, the love affair with life.

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We love her excitement for life’s adventures and are compelled to attest to it in any manner we can. Being outside, whether at the top of a mountain, in the middle of a desert, by a river, or far out at sea, is the best way to experience nature’s major teachings and has an unparalleled sensory impact. Don’t be intimidated by the idea of spending time outside if you weren’t raised doing so. Instead, use these pointers to get you started on your next exciting wild escape:

1. Completely break apart

Recognizing the outdoors for what they are is essential to learning to love them. You’re probably leaving town to escape the city grind, so take advantage of the opportunity and enjoy yourself to the fullest. Keep the iPad at home. Take a paper map and turn off the GPS. Instead than listening to the honking of cars, focus on the sound of rustling leaves and chirping birds. Give up looking for WiFi and allow yourself to become immersed in the simple act of existing.

2. Get ready and ahead of time

To put it simply, you should test-drive your outdoor equipment well in advance of really being outside. When you’re traveling, discovering something doesn’t fit or function isn’t the type of adventure you’re searching for. Instead, before you go, practice setting up your new tent at a local park, break in your hiking boots, and prepare a supper on the campstove.

Preparing your path, keeping an eye on the hourly weather prediction, and taking into account how these factors can alter the landscape are all essential components of pre-game study. Refer to a map, look it up on Google Earth, give the park ranger, tourism, or outfitter offices in your area a call, or take a few hours to browse through websites and forums.

3. Observe fauna and engage in responsible recreation.

It’s a rare chance to witness wildlife and birds in their natural habitat, but you should always consider your own safety. Avoid handling, feeding, or bothering animals in order to maintain a safe and courteous distance. To enjoy wildlife viewing, you don’t need expensive equipment: all you really need is a good field guide for butterflies or birds, along with a good set of binoculars, a smartphone, or a camera, but even those aren’t required. It is sufficient to just be active.

Keep an eye out for any creatures that could be around and offer a threat to your safety.

Never give any wild animal—not even chipmunks or squirrels—food. Don’t risk drawing in predators by leaving them wild.

When camping, tidy up the area by washing all dining and cooking items after each use and putting away any leftover food in sealed containers.

Contact the local authorities to report any assaults by wildlife.

Follow the “leave no trace” guidelines and familiarize yourself with local wildlife, plants, and conservation initiatives.

4. Take some contented campers with you!

Being by yourself in the outdoors might be frightening unless you’re very experienced, yet flying alone can be very invigorating. You’ll be astounded by how much more you notice when you’re with a buddy, how much you value having a second set of eyes and a different viewpoint, and how wonderful it may be to explore it all with someone you love.

Above all, our prospects of protecting the outdoors for future generations are increased the more people we can persuade to value it.

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