Stepping out from a rustic cabin of Boulder Hut Adventures, located near the beautiful town of Kimberley, British Columbia, I began taking the first steps of my morning ski touring adventure. Using skis that have skins attached to the bottom which provide grip and help climb up-hill, I was headed toward my destination of a glorious high-alpine basin. My eyes were fixed on the sets of ski tracks scattered in the snow ahead.
Some chose to ski the mellow terrain below a rock band, while a few had ventured higher – through a crux in the rock – daring to take on the adventure of steeper terrain. They aimed to discover big, gnarly mixes of chutes and steep tree lines that open up to infamous bowls hidden in the Canadian Rockies. Whichever route they chose, great terrain was waiting for them.
The lower slopes are perfect for first timers, those who are learning about snow safety, or practicing their powder turns. It’s a perfect introduction – the first step of many that you will want to make – when learning any extreme sport. Through preparation and training they gradually advance to the upper mountain, fueling their adrenaline to reach those chutes and explore the bowls.
Those who go higher are prepared and have readied their life for more. They have moved fear aside, accepted new challenges and bring a new attitude to the high altitude. As I climbed, I realized the mountains help beginners and experts go forward relishing a life full of adventure.
In life, there are many who sit on the beach watching the surf and some who take on the small waves. Few people actually go out, train, learn, grow and take on bigger wave. Get ready to paddle your life forward to those big waves. Challenge yourself and enjoy experiences that you did not think you could achieve or ever even dreamed of doing.
Whether you’re in the mountains or at the beach, take that step to learn, do and get more from your life with these tips:
Adjust your view. Be impressed with how people live, where they live or what they do for a living or how much money they make. Focus on the basics and base your view on what kind of adventures you and your friends experience.
Did you take your kids for a bike ride, make deep powder turns over the weekend, or catch that mesmerizing alpine glow during a Rockies sunset? These are the real world experiences that matter and are moments meant to be savored.
Powder Matt’s examples: Finding ways to do and enjoy the simple things in life is truly where you discover the most meaningful enrichment and adventure. Walk instead of drive. Host some new friends for a potluck instead of going out. Or try a backpacking trip instead of an all-inclusive.
Find some new friends. We are creatures of habit and will gravitate to what is comfortable, this needs to be shaken up from time to time so try finding new groups. Join a mountain biking club on one of their rides, or find a local rock climbing gym to connect with fellow climbers.
Try hanging with people who are different, doing interesting things and passionate about what they do. This will ignite your inner fire to want to try some new stuff and explore. You can learn more about yourself and your friends through play than a lifetime of work.
Powder Matt’s examples: Challenge yourself monthly to find new people at an event or function and take in stuff outside your comfort zone with them. Try a new adventure activity every 6 months.
Get your wild on. Embrace getting outside more often. Due to the fact that most of us live in urban environments, we actually have to work hard at making time to get out in nature. There are obvious benefits of getting outside, like stress reduction and vitamin D from the sun, so make time to visit the park, run the river trail or jet out to the mountains for an evening snowshoe.
Powder Matt’s examples: It is all about making outdoor time happen. Make it a priority and don’t succumb to excuses. The dishes and garbage can wait. Do some weird stuff. Do the tumbleweed dance on the range, or ride your mountain bike nude (ouch!). Giving high fives or smiling at everyone each day are some of the antics that you need to do. Be creative and push yourself out of your comfort zone on a daily basis in your regular life.
This puts you and your mind in the adventurous spirit. Powder Matt’s examples: It is all in your mind. Acting strange and being different breaks down the roadblocks that are holding you back from doing some things you think you can’t do. Unleash yourself and get going on your adventure. Get to the peak.
The daily overload of work-based stress isn’t healthy but throwing in adventure is a positive break. Find an activity or project and start your planning. Get lost in bookstores or seek lectures by adventure-minded souls, so you can stir your pot to travel, explore and participate in outdoor activities.
Powder Matt’s examples: Anticipation is as powerful as the actual adventure. Add periodic projects so you can benefit from all of the planning and dreaming that goes on before you explore.
Plan to attend monthly travel talks or adventure speaker series. Join outdoor social groups like #MappyHourYYC (coming soon to other Canadian cities) local university outdoor programs, or the Alpine Club of Canada. Also, don’t miss TenTree Insta for everyday inspiration.
Seek some alone time. Hashtag this, blogpost that, email overload… The hyper connected world zaps your inner dreaming and creative time. Solitude is a precious commodity now. Some don’t even know it can still exist. Time alone can actually help us be a better person by giving us time to reflect, re-fresh and be stronger in our relationships.
Powder Matt’s examples: schedule regular re-boot time. Try yoga, a daily walk and mindful stretching to decompress but also take time to dream. Adventures happen when you have the chance to leave the electronic world behind. Better yet, book an un-plugged week at Boulder Hut Adventures!
Do crazy stuff. Plan activities that you would never think you could do or believe you would ever be able to do. My wife hates the cold and I made her do an adventure race in the Arctic last winter.
Yes, this is crazy but it had a powerful effect on her. The experience gave her an internal power and strength, a feeling that she could do anything. She would have never done this but the challenge of doing something un-imaginable pushed her to new heights and broke down walls that were holding her back. Your crazy can be simple, like exploring a new park, trying a night run, or getting out on your first backpacking trip.
Powder Matt’s examples: Shake it up regularly. Do things that scare you weekly. Plan stuff you would never think you would do or ever dream possible. Sure, you may have to prepare more but that is part of the adventure.
Be humbled. Exploring nature helps make this easy for us. Meeting wildlife (like grizzly bears) or standing at the summit of a mountain can put things in perspective. Storms and temperatures can change or alter your plans, while finding your way can also be a challenge. However, these are just some of the amazing ways that nature shares her power to make you appreciate life and live humbly.
Powder Matt’s examples: This does not mean you can act in a reckless or unsafe manner. Get some training on how to camp in the woods and how to travel safely in bear country. Always check the weather prior to leaving for a trip and be prepared with proper gear if it changes. Lastly, do everyday goodness, help your friends, community and be an ambassador for the environment.