It doesn’t matter whether you are in snowy New Hampshire or rainy California, winter weather can put a serious crimp in your outdoor family activities. Having never lived in the northern climates, I’ve always had romantic notions of how much better snow must be, than the (relatively) cold and rainy locations that I’ve spent my life in. There’s not much that you can do in the rain, except wait for it to stop and, even then, most outdoor activities are still a messy affair.
Over the years, though, I’ve been fortunate enough to meet a number of friends from the northern climates and I’ve learned that although snow can be fun, being outdoors when the mercury drops into the sub-freezing domain is not nearly as much fun as the rest of us might imagine. One way to beat the winter blues, that is get the family outdoors and breathing some fresh air, is to take a daytrip for a little recreation.
Daytrips are great because they don’t require a lot of preparation. Sure, it’s a good idea to pack a lunch – even if your daytrip is hitting the ski slopes. a picnic lunch will be a lot cheaper than dining at the lodge. We’re not skiers, although the kids are just starting to show an interest in it, so when we look to get out of the house in the winter, it’s to anywhere that’s in the snowline and offers a decent slope for sledding. When we lived in Oregon, this was a relatively quick one-hour jaunt up into the Cascade Mountains. Now that we’re in Silicon Valley, however, it’s more like a three-hour slog up to the Sierra Nevada’s. I suppose that’s the rub with daytrips, depending on how far you have to go and what the road conditions are likely to be, you may have to hit the road pretty early, which is never an easy feat for the family!
Several weeks’ worth of rain and several business trips later, the Scribner Family was having a bad case of outdoor withdrawals. We loaded-up the family truckster with sleds, a change of clothes for everyone, a cooler for snacks, and headed up to Yosemite National Park for a day of R & R. And when I say R & R, I’m referring to mom and dad, because the kids didn’t slow down all day long. They were sledding, throwing snowballs, throwing the football (okay, dad helped with that) and generally having a grand old time! It was a great way to breakup an otherwise boring weekend of being indoors watching the rain, and they ended-up sleeping most of the way home. Perfect!
Does your family get the winter blues? What do you do, to get them outdoors in the winter?