16 November 2010

Heading Indoors...

Heading Indoors:

November and December are times when I start to plan for the year ahead. The days are shorter and I try to get up early, to get as much sunlight into my day as possible. By getting an ealy start, I can get back to home base and enjoy the evening properly. This allows a lot of room for error just in case my original plan does not go well. I plan ahead for an ealy nightfall (flashlight/spare batteries) and have plenty of things to do when it gets dark or I get stuck in a white-out(book/pen/survival equipment).
I like to calendar all my yearly to-do items such as cleaning out the gutters from fallen leaves and making photocopies of the cards in my wallet just in case I lose it or get it stolen. Quick errands that I have saved up all year to do, I do this time of the year. I accumulate a lot of gear and leave gear in people's car all the time... so I spend times in November/December/January not only returning gear or retaining gear, l but can often be caught enjoying a beverage or dinner with above similar minded gear-hound.
I also spend some time refreshing rescue skills such as knots and wilderness medicine techniques.
If at all possible, I time my recertifications this time of year, when I am more likely to be able to focus on bookwork.
Remember if you are heading outdoors, especially if for more than a day, let someone know when you are expected back and what kind of contingency plan you have... It allows the rescuers a lot of knowledge and they are more likely to find you if they know ... about where you are(leave a map in the car seat), are you ready to spend the night(rescues often start the next day) how prepared are you (spare batteries for radio or cell phone) (beacon/shovel/avalanche/orienteering skills)(overnight and warmth/food skills)(are you likely to look for a helicopter clearing and seek a signaling device). I like to ask myself, toward the end of any adventure "If I all of a sudden stopped having fun right now... can I survive the next 12 hours?"
Bears are more likely to forrage for hibernation this time of the year so be very careful in the back-country and mind your rubbish in the front-country. Other migratory things are happening so please be cognicent of what you tramp on.
The list below are some of my favorite things to do.

Trip planning: The year in review always lends ideas for trips and adventures ahead 
I highly reccomend this free website for skiing and snowboarding:
gear overhaul (clean/label and review usefullness and proficiency)
winterizing you car (keep gas tank patially/mostly full during winter outings)
lights and signals
proper eyewear(snow) and

Jump Sky High
Monster Mini Golf
Granite Arches/Pipeworks (indoor climbing)
Swimstitute (indoor pool/ indoor kayaking)
Leadership and Ropes courses
Bounce towns
Indoor skydiving (Union City)
Volunteering at a community shelter (animals too)

Quick Outdoors:
Fish Hatchery
Ice Rinks
Aquatic Center (Boating/Biking)
Soil Born Farms
Skate Parks
Snow shoe trips

American River:
William B Pond
River Bend Park
Hagan Oaks
Ancil Hoffman

Fair Oaks

City Water Intake Facility
Old Town

Ca State Rail Road
Discovery Science/space
Towe Auto
Sac Theater museum
B street theater

Drive in Movies! (bring camping mat, radio, flashlight and blankets:)
Dowtown and City Hikes and outings
Farmers Market
Online recipe searching (cooking/baking)
If you do not live in the greater Sacramento Area, a quick online search will produce similar activities in your neck of the woods.
Feel free to email me and help me add to next years list...
Have a wonderful season!