Hiking Alone? UnderRated.

Hiking alone is a completely different experience from hiking with a buddy.

Hiking is pretty second nature to me. I love it and always have.

October’s weather has been surprisingly sunny and warm. I find October is usually full of gloomy rainy days that make you want to stay inside rather than go outside. Since the weather has been so nice, I have been trying to make my way outdoors.

Usually, if I am by myself, I typically go for a run or a quick walk around my neighbourhood. I hardly ever venture too far from home when I am exploring alone.

When it comes to hiking, I typically hike with friends. Mainly for safety reasons like the unknown trail condition and or running into wildlife. Having a buddy during those times, make it a lot safer.

This time of year always seems to be crazy busy. Whether it’s midterms, work deadlines and or basic life responsibilities, everyone is busy. Lately, I have realized my free time has not been aligning with any of my friends. So although I usually hike with others, I knew that if I waited a couple of weeks the weather could drastically change.

This past week, I decided to go by myself. I did not want to miss the opportunity of hiking in the sun. I decided to pick a hike that I knew fairly well and that had little to no altitude change. A hike where I knew ahead of time where on the trail I had no service. After I picked a hike, I packed my bag.

In my backpack, I carried the usual essentials with the exception of a couple of things. My partner usually carries the bear spray and bell, so I just switched it to my pack. I always carry a first aid kit so I kept that in. I packed some water, a snack, an extra granola bar, a sweater and a toque. I knew before I went, I was overpacking. However, I would rather overpack than under-pack.

After that, I headed for the trailhead.

Hiking alone is a different experience from walking around your neighbourhood. In your neighbourhood, typically there are a lot of other people around. When hiking, I find it is a lot quieter. Of course, it is dependent on the type of hike and its popularity as well as the time of year, but generally, the trails are a lot less populated than the joe average street.

Hiking alone was better than I expected. I was able to relax and just have time to think. I walked and was just content by myself. As I was hiking, I thought about all the different things I had to get done and thought about different ways I could accomplish them. Hiking alone allowed me to process my next move and relax about what I was doing. Hiking alone was a quick escape.

Honestly hiking alone is peaceful and relaxing. It is a great reset.

Hiking alone? UnderRated.

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