Joan and I tend to shy away from hiking in the immediate area near town for most of the year.
The summers are too hot, of course. Spring and autumn are where we’ll go towards more backcountry oriented areas with fewer people.
But in winter? Winter is where we go to places in our immediate backyard.
We’ll hike the (now) scarcely used mountain bike trails to create larger hiking loops, see the places mentioned in tourist brochures, and explore places that seem wild again due to the fewer people.
And the red rock combined with snow always makes for some memorable scenes in our high desert landscape.
Though we are out camping or backpacking almost every weekend this year, these local hikes give us a chance to have a leisurely morning where I can have just one more cup of coffee (and the apple puff pancakes that Joan makes and I enjoy so much) and let the day warm up a little bit. We don’t drive far at all to get on a memorable hike in our adopted home.
It’s a simple rhythm for us to look over our maps, guidebooks, and favorite websites on a Friday. And we find a place that looks interesting based on the weather and potential driving conditions on the dirt roads.
We then get up, drive, go hiking, and repeat.
But it’s a rhythm we find immensely satisfying.
We always look forward to our time when we again venture into the areas around our home.
And if our home’s a modest one, the view never gets tiring from our front yard. 🙂