Hiking in The Fall

Hiking in The Fall


It is the time of year when most people are getting out as much as possible before winter shuts them in. Hiking is one of the best ways to do this. The fall foliage will be at its best and temperatures are far more accommodating. The fall foliage colors are like so many balls of yarn, and when the leaves start to fall and swirl it gives you that feeling that you need to snuggle closer to something warm.

You can get some really up close photographs when you are hiking and the view of a far away area is easier to see because the brush is a little bit thinner. The coloring of the whole forest is different and it is possible to watch animals scurrying around storing food for the winter. If you are quiet they will go on as if you are not there.

Hiking in The Fall

How Hiking Is?

Hiking gives you the hills, the valleys, the slippery pine needles and the huge rocks. Hiking reminds you that berries grow free and nuts grow on trees, not next door. I hope I made you smile and relax a little. That is how hiking is. For a little span of time you get to forget the office and anything going on in what we term the real world. But as you walk you remember, this, is the real world, then you stop worrying about the one you have created, and find it, much more manageable.

Hiking through the woods the twigs still crackle under your feet. The water in a stream still runs without disturbing the soil that it rolls across, and you still wonder like a child why this happens. Although now you have more of the scientific answers as to why a thing should and should not be, but that deep down part of you still ask,” Why?”

The Adventurous Spirit:

While hiking the adventurous spirit of a child rekindles itself. A flame deep inside of us all nourished by some and kept hidden away by others. When you are hiking the world can get quiet and you can hear your own thoughts. No traffic, no urgent rush to really get anywhere. To sit down where you decide for as long as you like is a disappearing luxury in our society. You look around and really see the grass and find you have forgotten the way the earth smells after it rains. You catch a glimpse of sunlight as the rays beam through the trees, an odor from some flower and you remember a point in time gone by.

Hiking brings the past, present and the future to you in each step. As you walk, the memories of long ago flood your mind and your senses. You are presently experiencing all of these things anew and hoping for another adventure with every step you take; continuously moving into the future with every stride. Hiking is a way to keep moving, physically and emotionally. While looking at nature you realize old trees are blooming as lovely and as full as the young ones. Nature does not let go until it is gone. So with every hiking step or look we must all do the same.

Dinner Hikes: Walking to a Meal

Dinner Hikes: Walking to a Meal

Dinner Hikes

Can The Love of Hiking and Delicious Gourmet Food be Combined?

Oh yeah.Mary and I are both avid hikers and gourmet cooks so we looked for a way to have the best of both worlds. We started taking Dinner Hikes. We could get some exercise, sit down and eat a scrumptious meal, and then hike some of it off. In a public park, nearby State Park, or recreation area we find it a great way to decompress after a trying day, have dinner out, and get a workout. No matter where you live there are places to take short hikes in the evening. Limit the total distance to a couple of miles or less. It is important to have time to eat a leisurely meal.

Dinner Hikes Walking to a Meal

Picking a place for a dinner hike took some thought, now for the food and miscellaneous things you will need. Everything you should need will fit in one daypack.

What you take to eat depends on the time of year and what your taste buds desire. In the cooler months we enjoy hot homemade chili or soup in a big thermos. Pack some crackers and chunks of cheese to compliment it.

Spring and Summer Dinner Hikes Menus:

Can run the gamut from sandwiches to salads, take out chicken to burgers, or any mix of cheese, bread and fruit. You can let your imagination go wild. Here is one suggestion that combines bread, fruit and chicken.

BBQ Chicken Salad with Pineapple and Grapes fits the bill for warm weather dinner hikes. Use 2 cups of leftover BBQd chicken (we like the moist meat from thighs) — 1 cup of chopped pineapple (fresh is best but canned will do) — 1 cup of red grapes halved — fresh herb of your choice (I recommend lime basil or lemon thyme but plain basil works) — tablespoon of lime juice — 1/2 cup of chopped green onion or red onion — BBQ dressing made with 1/2 cup mayo, 1/4 cup BBQ sauce, teaspoon of Worcheshire sauce, and dash of hot sauce. Gently fold all ingredients together. Make it the day before and chill it in the refrigerator for maximum flavor. Pile this on some good bread and bite in.

What to Take to Drink?

We like to take a bottle of wine. Make sure you have some water along to keep from getting dehydrated when you are hiking.

To dessert, or not to dessert. Up to you but it adds a finishing touch. Besides you are going to be hiking some calories away after dinner anyway.

In the daypack, along with the food and drink, make sure to bring a blanket or ground cloth to sit on, cutlery if needed, ice packs to keep stuff chilled, cups for drinks (we have a pair of orange plastic wine glasses), and plates (cheap colorful plastic plates are great).A walk in the woods and a delicious meal followed by another scenic walk. Dinner hikes are a fabulous way to combine exercise and food. Make sure to pack out all your trash. Leave no trace where you go except your footsteps.

Purchasing a Lantern for Camping or Hiking

Purchasing a Lantern for Camping or Hiking

Lantern for Camping

Throughout the year, families across the United States engage in a recreational, and inexpensive, weekend getaway that often includes camping. With countless numbers of park and recreation facilities across the United States, children, and their parents, can enjoy the great outdoors, even if in their own backyard.When camping, as in any other sport or recreational activity, the key to safety lies in the preparation of the activity. Camping, for many families, can be overwhelming when not properly prepared with the right tools and resources. One such tool, the lantern, is a necessity but choosing the right lantern for camping can be equally as challenging as the camping event itself.

Purchasing a Lantern for Camping or Hiking

Camping Lanterns:

As a general rule, camping lanterns come in a variety of sizes but, generally, classified as either small or large. The size you will need will depend, largely, on what camping activities you will be doing.

When backpacking, the small lightweight packing lanterns are ideal. This type of lantern will weigh, generally, around 28 ounces. As a lantern that is easy to carry, the source of power is generated from either unleaded gas or from stove fuel. While there are smaller and more compact lanterns, weighing around nine ounces, we find these are not as useful when hiking, especially when you anticipate being outdoors, in the dark, for extended periods. Although, for a short nighttime excursion, a nine ounce lantern will work well.

Liquid-Fuel Burning Lantern:

When at base camp, many families will turn to the larger lanterns. In the larger versions, lanterns are equipped to use kerosene, unleaded fuel, propane and even batteries. As a heavier version of camping lantern, these will generally weigh a few pounds with the liquid-fuel burning lantern providing the cheapest option for use.

Along those same lines is the use of propane lanterns. While not as cost effective as a liquid-fuel lantern, the propane lantern is generally considered the safest, aside from costly batteries, and is recommended for families who are camping with children. A refillable propane tank is quite heavy but propane lanterns will provide the safest option when camping and, in many cases, when camping with children, safety is the most important issue.

Safety When Camping with your Family:

When camping with your family this year, there are many tools and resources you will need to consider as part of your camping excursion. Whether camping with children, camping in very remote areas or just camping in your backyard, a lantern will, in most cases, be necessary. To ensure the safety of your entire family, and to provide the most efficient use of power and energy, use these simple guides when purchasing your next camping lantern.