With the heavy snowstorm that just hit the United States, many of us can’t wait until the winter is over. Finally, we’ll be able to get outside again and enjoy the great outdoors without having to wear endless layers upon layers to keep ourselves warm. That being said, winter still of course has some of the best opportunities for outdoor adventure, and it would be a shame to not give one of these activities a chance before spring arrives:
Snowshoe to Dinner
If you love food as much as you love being outside, then the Snowshoe to Dinner is one of the best activities you can do before winter ends. Located in Idaho’s Ponderosa State Park, you won’t mind the cold so much when you see what will be waiting for you at the end of your hike. After snowshoeing or trekking in cross-country skis or snowshoes for about a mile in the freezing wilderness, you’ll be greeted by a warm and cozy setting at the Blue Moon Yurt.
When you first arrive, you’ll be give hot cider to warm your bones, but since this event is BYOB, feel free to spice yours up. After having a few drinks and enjoying some delicious hor d’oeuvres, you’ll enter into the eating room where you’ll choose a gourmet, ethnic meal off their menu. Make some new friends and eat up! Afterwards, you’ll head out for yet another hike right along Payette Lake. The event goes until March, so make your reservation quickly!
Chill Out in Hot Springs
Taking a bath while it’s cold out might not sound like comforting idea, but doing so in a hot spring will no doubt change your mind. There’s many places throughout the US where a cold winter hike will lead you right to a perfect hot spring, which will make you forget what season it is the second you soak in.
Many of the country’s best hot springs are located within the Pacific Northwest. While a majority of them are held inside some kind of cabin house, they are still technically in the backcountry. Take for example, the Bagby Hot Springs in Oregon. It’s about a 3 mile hike round trip to the springs through the rugged forest, but you’ll find civilization once you arrive at the hot spring house.
The thought of ‘climbing’ and ‘ice’ put together doesn’t quite sound that safe. However, ice climbing is one of those activities that has been gaining popularity for quite some time now, especially in Colorado. Located right on the Rocky Mountains, visitors to this snowy state can take advantage of this awesome sport.
So, what exactly is ice climbing? Well, if you can imagine how exhilarating it must be to climb up a mountain that’s not frozen solid, then imagine climbing the face of a waterfall that is frozen solid. Ouray Ice Park is free and open to the public during the winter season, but that doesn’t mean anyone can just give it a try. You’re going to need a lesson before you start, but there’s plenty of places to get one. The park has a wonderful reputation, catering to both groups and individual climbers from around the world. There’s even an ice festival that goes on here every winter, too!
Yes, there’s a such thing as ‘snowkiting’, and you must try it before winter is over. Snowkiting is kind of like parasailing, except in the snow. Instead of going down the mountain on a board, skis, a sled, or tube, you’ll instead be attached essentially to what looks like a kite, that is powered solely by the wind to glide you down. Sounds pretty self-explanatory, but this extreme sport definitely requires some practice.
Ogden Valley is the place to go to try snowkiting, as there’s many schools around the area that will teach you how to do it and help supply you with the gear you need. It won’t take long for you to get hooked, and figure out your own style for flying down the mountainsides.
People interact with nature in different ways, and sometimes the weather may not be ideal for what you like to do. Out of the activities that are common in the winter, yoga isn’t one of them. As you can imagine, it may be rather difficult to do poses with ice and snow everywhere. However, those who love yoga don’t have to give up on doing it upon mountain tops just because it’s winter. There’s Snowga-Snow Yoga-retreats throughout the country, that accommodate yogis all year round.
Snowga retreats allow you to snowshoe and do yoga, in a well-designed trek that has everything you’re looking for. Typically, you’ll end up snowshoeing along a scenic trail for a few hours, stopping every so often to do yoga poses. Allowing you to relax your body will be magnificent views that only the winter can offer.
Don’t be upset that spring isn’t here yet. Just enjoy the time you have left of winter!