Winter Playtime

When winter sets in, and the cold temperatures become monotonous, people tend to travel to warmer places to get out of the cold, and kick the cabin fever feeling to the curb. People want to get outside and enjoy the sun – – without the winter nipping at their exposed skin. I can understand that, because I am not too fond of cold temperatures either.

But regardless, winter is going to run its course, so why not make the best of it. The world is beautiful and nature is stunning in all of its seasons. So grab your winter clothing and safety gear, and discover your wintry diversion, you won’t regret it.

Snow Skiing / Snowboarding

An all-time favorite sport, skiers and snowboarders alike, look forward to that epic snow day, where the snow on the slopes is deep and powdery. If you like speed, this is the winter sport for you, because you obtain a high speed bombing down the mountainside, that cross-country skiers could never achieve. There are many places where you can have an epic day on the slopes, but there are a few places where the avid skier and snowboarder purposely travels to just so that they can experience the greatest snow and best slopes in the world.

  • Snowbird, Utah, USA
  • Whistler, Canada
  • Murren, Switzerland
  • Chamonix, France
  • St. Anton, Austria

Cross-Country Skiing

Different than skiing downhill on the slopes, this is a sport where cardio needs to become your best friend. You cannot just bomb down a mountainside doing everything you can to avoid obstacles that might be in your way. You’ve got to maneuver a variety of terrains using your natural body movement. It doesn’t take a lot of effort on your part to get going, but it will take quite a bit of effort to keep going. The great thing about this sport is that it is more relaxed, and you can take that leisurely stroll through nature as you admire its beauty while getting a great cardio workout. Optimal places for cross-country skiing include:

  • Royal Gorge Cross Country Resort – Soda Springs, California
  • SilverStar Mountain Resort – Vernon, British Columbia
  • Lone Mountain Ranch – Big Sky, Montana
  • American Birkebeiner Trail – Hayward, Wisconsin
  • Trapp Family Lodge – Stowe, Vermont

Snowshoeing

For those that feel more safe to have both feet on the ground, snowshoeing is perfect for you, because you’ve got that stable security. This sport is very low-key, and focused upon taking in every inch of nature as you slowly walk by. Your photographic memories have zero chance of being blurry, that is certainly a plus. Another plus, is that it is a very inexpensive way to get outdoors and enjoy the snow. Included below, are some of the best places to snowshoe:

  • Queenstown, New Zealand
  • White River – Mount Hood, Oregon
  • Yatsugatake, Japan
  • Lapland, Finland
  • Bariloche, Patagonia

Snowmobiling

Another high-speed winter favorite is driving a motorized sled. This machine is designed to cover a lot of snow-covered and iced-over ground. There are so many trails that you can follow, or you can head out into the backcountry. Nature is your playground, explore it in great places such as:

  • Moran, Wyoming
  • Park City,Utah
  • Steamboat Springs, Colorado
  • Katahdin Region of Maine
  • Priest Lake, Idaho

Ice fishing

If you are looking for a sedentary, relaxing way to be out on the water during the freezing months, ice fishing is the perfect sport. Plus, you won’t have to figure out what to eat for dinner. You can either fish openly or in an enclosure of some sort. Enclosures can be heated if you are wanting some relief from the biting temperatures. Listed below are some of the best places to fish on the ice:

  • Lule River, Sweden
  • Devils Lake, North Dakota
  • Birch Lake, Alaska
  • Lake Simcoe, Ontario
  • Lake of the Woods, Minnesota

Ice Skating

This sport is the typical activity during winter. The professionals glide across the ice so elegantly, while amateurs – – well – – not so much. Your speed is driven by your comfort zone, the more comfortable you become, the faster your feet slide along the ice. Some irresistible places to skate outdoors on the ice include:

  • Vienna Ice Dream, Vienna
  • City Park Ice Rink, Budapest
  • Somerset House, London
  • Fuji-Q Highland, Japan
  • Rockefeller Center, New York

There are many outdoor activities to keep you wishing that winter will never end. But, if you are still not convinced, let me tell you that these winter sports are just a variation of your all-time favorite spring, summer, and fall sports:

  • snow skiing = water skiing
  • snowboarding = wakeboarding
  • cross-country skiing = roller skating with poles
  • snowshoeing = hiking and/or backpacking
  • snowmobiling = ATV/UTV
  • ice fishing = fishing
  • ice skating = rollerblading

With all the incredible places to travel to, and all the fun activities to participate in, dress warmly, always be prepared for what if scenarios, head outdoors, and fall in love with winter.

 

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