Winter has a way of transforming the landscape in unimaginable ways. Some of my favorite paths, routes and trails make it to the top of my list for several reasons, including their ability to transform and offer new opportunities with each changing season.
There are so many great reasons to explore new places, but there are as many reasons to visit a familiar spot and experience its transformation with each season.
So in winter, it can be especially fun to head somewhere you've been before.
Here are some of my favorite reasons for heading out to explore a familiar place…
When I’m outdoors, I do my best to connect to the season I’m experiencing. Phenology is the study of annual/cyclic/seasonal natural events and it all depends on your location and the time of year.
Migrating birds and amphibians change throughout the year, as will blooming and flowering plants and trees. While signs of certain visitors can be seen in spring (toad and salamander eggs in ponds), others can only be observed in winter. Winter is a great time to explore a familiar place and compare it to past visits!
Some of my favorite summer hikes turn into my favorite cross-country skiing routes in winter!
This goes the same for wildlife viewing or birding locations. Animals migrate at various times of the year and in late winter, watching for early spring arrivals is always a fun activity for our family!
While I don’t have many digital images of my favorite locations across all of our seasons, the mental images and journal entries remind me of my experiences. In summer, it’s hot days of fast-paced rides under forest canopies but in the winter months, I swap my mountain bike for a fat tire bike and slow things down a bit. I have experienced the same trail year in and year out and still found new experiences. An old trail really can lead to new adventures!
by Ryan Michelle Scavo, Outdoorswoman & Adventure Mama. Instagram: @Ryoutside
copyright Purple Lizard Maps 2021
This is a hey, winter ain’t so bad story. Not so sure? Keep reading.
Winter changes the landscape and can change our outdoor experiences. It takes a familiar trail and transforms it into a new experience. But I also understand that this time of year, after enduring a couple months of overcast skies and damp, chill-you-to-the-bone, below-freezing temps can really start to wear on a person.