People who have never hiked before may be cautious about committing to an invitation that includes hiking. Many questions may plague them. They may dither over what shoes to wear, should they take a rucksack, can they make the distance. Then another thought may strike, making them question their willingness to complete the hike; “what if hiking is boring?”
Hiking is not boring. It is more than putting one step in front of the other – although that can become a victory. Hiking is about immersing yourself in the natural world. It can be a trail to peace, reflection, and gaining perspective. The trail becomes the place where you have the space to be.
“Without new experiences, something inside of us sleeps. The sleeper must awaken.” – Frank Herbert. If you have never hiked, it’s time to start now.
Will I Be Bored On A Hike?
Screen addicts, mall trawlers, and other citified life forms may be horrified at the thought of walking any distance, let alone hiking. Although hiking as a form of entertainment will be novel and stretching for people who seldom exercise or go outside, it will be well worth it.
Hiking offers an infinite number of possibilities to interest and challenge you as you wend your way along the trail.
What Will I See On A Hike?
We zoom past fields, forests, and mountain passes without noticing much except the speedometer on the dashboard when we travel by car. Hiking offers you the opportunity to witness the rich treasure of flora and fauna that Nature provides.
Many creatures encountered will amaze and astound you at their adaptations to living in a world that is often hostile to them. The way they function, their camouflage, and the symbiotic relationships between species are fascinating.
Some people say when you have seen one tree; you’ve seen them all. These people have missed a lot. Trees have fascinating shapes in their stems, branches, and leaves. Did you know that trees in a forest communicate with each other?
Tree bark may be rough or smooth. They have curious ways of hiding their seed and are remarkably innovative in dispersing it into the wide world.
Hiking For Adrenalin Addicts
Adrenalin addicts may find the pace a bit slow when they need to admire the shape of the trees or the delicate hues on a butterfly wing. But Nature knew about these restless souls and made a plan.
When you hike in the wilderness, you will encounter many more animals that are perhaps not so ho-hum. Snakes occur in almost every place in the world. Numerous species are venomous and would put you in hospital if they bit you.
Fortunately, snakes usually move out the way when they hear the thunderous boots of hikers. If you want to see the snakes, you will need to walk softly and peer deeply into the underbrush.
Other animals that you might encounter are big cats, mountain lions, bobcats, and panthers. Bears occur in a plentiful supply around most hiking trails in the USA. Raccoons, beaver, deer, and myriad other animals can be seen on a hike.
Hiking Is Better With Two
Hiking with someone else makes walking more interesting and safer. Choosing a hiking partner who knows the local flora and fauna can be hugely educating.
If you are a socialite, you will find that hiking with someone makes an instant connection. You will be guaranteed to find your hiking partner disclosing many fascinating tidbits of information you did not previously know about them.
Hiking Offers A Time For Reflection
Researchers have found that being out in Nature offers us significant benefits to both our psychological and physical health. People who spend time outside are less likely to battle with depression.
There is a new approach to treating stressed-out, depressed people called green therapy. Guess where it takes place? Out in fields and forests and mountains.
Cognitively we improve when we stroll through great green swathes of trees, breathe fresh blue air and dig our fingers into the soil.
Morally we are kinder, more understanding, and more patient after time spent outside. Our blood pressure reduces, and our cortisol levels drop when we feast our eyes on the vistas nature offers.
What better way to gain all these benefits than going for a hike. When hiking, we focus on where we are putting our feet, each breath we take, the bird whistling in the tree, the leaf brushing our face. This is all part of what psychologists call mindfulness – the art of being truly in the present. With no intrusion from yesterday or tomorrow. A healthy place of rest.
Having the space to count your breaths as you inhale and exhale gives you a steadiness of mind that allows you to reflect and find the hiking trail to peace and tranquillity.
Hiking Is Varied
Some people may be put off hiking as they feel they would be bored climbing a mountain or it might be too hard. The reality is hiking can occur on many different terrains and locations.
You could choose to hike up a mountain. Take good shoes, water, go with people and always let someone know where you are. Mountain hiking and canyoneering are stimulating and guaranteed to get the adrenalin buzzing.
Jumping across cracks, negotiating slot canyons, walking on narrow ledges should all give quite a quota of interest to someone who thinks hiking might be boring.
You can choose to hike along the coastline with the surf pounding and restless. Coastal hikes offer a new diverse set of animals and plants to explore.
Hiking in the woods can bring a serene calm as you become enfolded by the trees where life’s echoes don’t reach.
Where Are We Going When We Hike?
Hiking is less about the destination and more about the journey. Sometimes putting one foot in front of the other on a steep hill is all you can manage. At the top, you will know something a little more about yourself.
Hiking may aim for the mountain top, but the adventures on the way up will feature just as large as the view from the summit.
At times we might hike through a field just for the stillness that comes when we remove our souls and minds from the world’s screaming.
Hiking is not boring. Come prepared to be amazed by the genuine interactive experience Nature offers. You will find that you become enthralled and captivated by the world around us. Hiking is good for you in all areas, and it offers the chance to walk away from a chaotic world for a few hours. There is much to learn and be entranced by when we hike. Firm friends are made on hiking trails.