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swings in the winter

5 Ways To Get The Family Outside This Winter

Being outdoors is good for the soul and a great way to spend time with the family. We all need a regular dose of fresh air, open spaces, and sunlight on our skin. This is especially true during the winter. It's a much easier alternative to stay cooped up sipping coffee and watching Netflix, all the while finding that itch for adventure increasingly more difficult to scratch. Don't fear though... we're here to help you fight your cabin fever. We've spent some time brainstorming our favorite outdoor winter activities for your enjoyment. We felt it important to include activities that have a spontaneous element to them or at least that are easy and accessible to do without much planning. We hope this helps you and your family spend some quality time outdoors this winter.

Community Sledding

1. Sledding

If you've been lucky enough to have a good snow recently, this is the go-to option! Sledding is such an incredible amount of fun. The important thing to remember here is that sledding isn't just sledding. You'll inevitably make a snowman, then get into a snowball fight, then make a snow angel, and then go back to sledding. It's really an encapsulation of all the great things about playing in the snow. Sledding offers loads of exercise (mostly on the way back up), and is a true adventure.

Geocache

2. Geocaching

This one is often overlooked but is a very engaging activity for families to do together. If you're unfamilar with Geocaching, it's basically an outdoor treasure hunt for the “cache” or container that's hidden at a specific location. You enter GPS coordinates into a GPS device, (a smartphone should work just fine), navigate to that location, and try to find the container or “cache”. It's very common for geocaches to be hidden in parks, along hiking trails, or other adventurous locations, making it a unique experience that may take you to fun new places that you've never been. An important tip for winter geocaching is that the terrain may be more difficult to cover, so make sure you're prepared to be outside in the elements for a while. You might want to lean towards some of the easier geocaches during the winter season. This page is a great resource for getting started geocaching.

Backyard Winter Football

3. Touch Football

Winter is one of the best times to get a backyard game of touch football going with your family and friends. It's loads of exercise, and everyone can join in on the fun. If you're playing with a wide range of skill levels, it's definitely a good idea to cater the game to the players so that everyone has fun. As always, be safe!

Winter Star Gazing

4. Winter Star Gazing.

It's true, the sky is a lot more crisp in the winter because it has less capacity to hold moisture. This makes it a perfect time for star gazing. You might want to check out the app StarMap or Google Earth to help you navigate the sky. It's also a great idea to bring along a pair of binoculars for some magnification without having to mess with a telescope in the cold. Sometimes with all the madness of life it's a good exercise to be in awe.

Nature Walk with Grandpa

5. Go for a nature walk

Don't miss out on nature walks just because it's winter! Sometimes the most beautiful scenes are during the winter time. Check with your local nature center; they may have guided nature walks or other activities planned. And the real gems of this category are outdoor walks through holiday light displays. Family, hot chocolate, maybe even a candy cane or two... now that's time well spent.

Photo Credit:
winter by dmitrybarsky is licensed under CC BY 2.0 / Cropped from original
Boise Metro Chamber photo to share - Sledding in Camel Back Park Winter 2010 by Boise Metro Chamber is licensed under CC BY 2.0 / Cropped from original
QCBFL Football - Backyard football game in the snow. Vander Veer Park by SalzerE is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 / Cropped from original
Glacier Point, Yosemite National Park by nimishgogri is licensed under CC BY 2.0 / Cropped from original