It's no secret that Devin and I like camping (like this 2013 vacation and this trip last summer), though we haven't tried it since having Aiden. Our love of camping is just one outlet for outdoor activities, which also includes hiking!
Last week, we were immensely blessed to spend time with family in Colorado--cooking dinners together, riding quads through trails, talking about faith and relationships on long drives to/from the airport, and, of course, hiking. Staying at my aunt and uncle's amazing house on the side of a mountain was the perfect launch for family hikes. Our group's ages ranged from 6 months old (Aiden was the youngest cousin!) to 70 years old, yet my hospitable aunt & uncle were able to pick out some hikes that would appeal to our diverse group.
Here's why you should include hiking on your vacation:
1. It's free.
That's one of my favorite parts of hiking. No admission tickets necessary!
2. The quality time with people.
Depending on your pace (or what altitude you're at! 13,000 feet is no joke!), you can have deep conversations and laugh with your fellow hiking buddies. Since we were on vacation with relatives we see once every few years, it was a great chance to make new memories while catching up on their lives! At one point, my 7-year-old cousin very sweetly walked next to me and held my hand. Another time, I got to hear my aunt tell me how she and my uncle met. Our 2 hikes that week provided lots of time for talking and making memories :)
3. The views.
God's creation is astounding! One day in Colorado, we hiked up a steep trail to a lake that was surrounded by mountains. As I nursed Aiden on a rock by the water's edge, I couldn't help but start singing (lucky for the rest of my family, I was too far away for them to hear me.) The still lake, the looming mountains, the birds, the pine trees...it was overwhelming that our Creator invented all of these things!
It's good exercise! By the end of the day, you feel productive and happily tired.
Even if you don't live in the beautiful/perfect/cool/sunny/ideal/amazing (too far?) state of Colorado, you can find some trails to walk near you! Even in the cityscape of downtown Philadelphia we have trails that follow a river.
What's your favorite vacation activity? What trails are near you?