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Basic Outdoors Guide

Updated on January 28, 2013

Loving the Great Outdoors

Say what you will, but nothing beats enjoying Mother Nature and the great outdoors.  You don't have to be living in Alaska to enjoy all the recreational activities that going outside has to offer (although admittedly, living in Alaska certainly doesn't hurt the cause).  While camping, hiking, fishing, and hunting are some of the first activities that come to mind, the full scope of how the outdoors can be enjoyed is far larger.  From simply walking through a park, to taking pictures of wildlife, to some more adventurous activities like jet skiing - there are tons of options out there for anyone who has the energy and willingness to go and enjoy it.  Because of this wide array of options, outdoor recreation remains wildly popular even in a day and age where it seems like video games, DVDs, and mind-numbing TV rule the free time of far too many kids and teenagers (and adults, for that matter).  Still, from slow pitch softball games on the Fourth of July to fishing a quiet trout stream, or just floating down the river with an inner tube and a cooler of your ice cold drink of choice, it's hard not to just love the great outdoors.

Great Outdoors Pictures

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Not a zoom lens - great day as I really am about eight feet away from this doe.Some great flowers.That is a real deer...I'm amazed at how motionless they can stand.Rock coast, believe it or not, is from Cedar Rapids, Iowa and not Maine or a coastal state.True North Dakota Prairie (picture courtesy of Iver Arnegard)Nice patch of road off an Indiana camp ground.
Not a zoom lens - great day as I really am about eight feet away from this doe.
Not a zoom lens - great day as I really am about eight feet away from this doe.
Some great flowers.
Some great flowers.
That is a real deer...I'm amazed at how motionless they can stand.
That is a real deer...I'm amazed at how motionless they can stand.
Rock coast, believe it or not, is from Cedar Rapids, Iowa and not Maine or a coastal state.
Rock coast, believe it or not, is from Cedar Rapids, Iowa and not Maine or a coastal state.
True North Dakota Prairie (picture courtesy of Iver Arnegard)
True North Dakota Prairie (picture courtesy of Iver Arnegard)
Nice patch of road off an Indiana camp ground.
Nice patch of road off an Indiana camp ground.

Even City Hiking Trails Can Be Beautiful

One of the major parts of enjoying the great outdoors is just seeing nature where it is. Even if you're in a major cities, most cities will have some nice parks where you can get away for awhile. One of the best I've ever seen personally is the green belt of Austin, Texas. Miles of hiking trails, trees, a river bed, and everything else right into the middle of the city at the main city park with the buildings and roads of the city rarely in sight. But most cities have some great parks. Currently I'm back in my old college town of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and there are a lot of fantastic parks and even hiking trails right in the middle of town here.

The pictures of the deer is actually from this trail. I'd say about 20% of the time I hike this trail (which is also a bike trail), I will see a deer. The lake has a great rocky coast, and plenty of ducks. I'm not big on the geese who are here in the spring, but they all leave soon enough. Deer, trees, water - it's a great trail and the wild flowers are beautiful. Even in the middle of a city, it's nice to know that with a little bit of a walk I can really "get away."

So don't automatically assume living in a city disqualifies you from enjoying the great outdoors.  There are always little ways to get out and enjoy being away from the indoors for at least a little bit.

So What All Do You Need for the Outdoors?

So what all do you need to enjoy the great outdoors? Depends on what you're doing on that particular day. If you want a great lazy weekend of fishing where you don't have to pay attention and can just kick back and drink beer in the shade, then take a look at getting some good carp fishing gear because it doesn't get much more laid back than that...but when the fish hits then you've got a fun fight on your hands :) It's basically the best of both worlds.

If you're camping for a weekend, or a week, consider taking along a heavy duty flashlight. These are always useful for getting around at night, finding the local latrines, or even maybe going for a night hike. You never know when you'll need a flashlight, and getting one that can take a beating is probably a good idea, because of all the "just in case" scenarios. Picking out the right one can be extremely difficult, so if you need some help feel free to visit this helpful article all about how to pick the right heavy duty flashlight for you.

Terry Hearn Carp Fishing

Basic Wilderness Survival Kit Video

How to Make a Traditional Hunting Bow

The Longer Outdoors, the More it Grows on You

The Outdoors are something that definitely grow on a person. The more time you spend outside, the more you are going to enjoy it, and feel the need to keep going back for more. There are many great activities for the young and old alike. Gentle walks, fishing, bird watching, and even just reading in a lawn chair outside are all wonderful and relaxing activities.

For people who want to be more active, there's rock climbing, major hiking, Frisbee golf, or paint ball. These are great activities for the day time that will help keep you active while still having fun.

In addition to this, there is the obvious night time activity of star gazing. If you've never been amazed by the stars, you need to find a better view to see them from. You don't even need a telescope. A truly clear night without light pollution is beautiful, and you don't need a telescope. Just bring a great pair of binoculars, and you'll be amazed by just how much of a difference that makes.

But always be prepared and if you have a particular fear of slithery reptiles (and don't be embarrassed - snakes freaking terrify me) then spend the money for a pair of good snake proof boots. Believe me, the peace of mind is worth it.

Or if you're going to be sitting around where the grass is well cut, think about finding a good seat to enjoy the outdoors and rest the legs.  Take a look at this fishing chair review for some good ideas.

So Many Outdoor Activities

There are so many outdoor activities that can be enjoyed, it's impossible to create a single website that could even begin to cover them all. This is also very true because of the wide range of differences people have in deciding what's fun or not. For some people the very idea of being stuck in a wilderness survival situation is terrifying. There are others who actually find wilderness survival to be a fun diversion, probably from the Boy Scout days.

If you need a good night sleep and think tents are out of the question, don't worry, there are options. A great double air mattress can provide a level of comfort that's just as good as, or even better than, your bed at home. Many of these will come with automatic electric pumps, and thanks to the proliferation of RVs, finding an electrical outlet isn't very hard at all.

The possibilities are really limited only by your imagination and your particular likes or dislikes. There's always something with outside recreation to do, so get out there and enjoy the many amazing things (both big and small) that being outside and out and about can create. After all, being active outside is one of my major tips to learning how to live in the moment, so you can live life to its fullest.

Comments on My Basic Outdoors Guide

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    • profile image

      Nancy's Niche 

      9 years ago

      Funny, if people only took the time to look around and realize how much of nature they have to enjoy---and then do it!

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