Late winter is such a difficult time to be out in the woods and mountains. During the transitional seasons of spring and late fall the weather is tricky and the trail conditions iffy. These times of year require more attention to gear and planning to ensure safety and warmth. We're relatively new to an outdoors lifestyle so we're still working on figuring that all out.
In addition to our steep learning curve we have the added challenge of kiddos who outgrow or lose (as in the case of our son) their clothing, boots & mitts on a recurring basis. When boots are too small they cause blisters we're not going to make a kid go hiking all day.
Last weekend was one of those occasions when all these factors - the challenging conditions, the outgrown boots and limited time conspired to keep us housebound. But instead of throwing our hands up in defeat (if it weren't for Damien I'd easily give in when the going got tough) we decided to take some of our own advice to find an undiscovered green space in our neighborhood to explore.
The first adventure was on Saturday while mommy took a much needed break from full time mothering, homemaking & homeschooling and headed to the library to knit & read. Daddy used the opportunity to scope out, with the kids, a wooded area 6 blocks or so from our house.
The next day - a beautiful sunny Sunday afternoon - we all headed back to the woods together with the camera and a plan to follow a new undiscovered trail.
We must of walked at least 4 miles - there and back. We could of kept going but Celine's heel was starting to hurt from those too-small winter boots. So when the moleskin in our first aid kit (you should always pack a first aid kit, especially when hiking with kids) wasn't helping we headed back before real discomfort set in.
Even though we started back earlier than we might of otherwise we still all filled our lungs with tree air, crossed a stream (who knew this was in my neighborhood?), felt the late winter sun warm on our faces and had a fantastic family conversation. The conversation alone was worth it for me. But taking photos of my children in the trees and sunshine was a close second.
I had no idea this little oasis was so close. Maybe you have a green area close to your home also that you don't even know about? You might be surprised at what you can find within walking distance, in your neighborhood.