5 Photos To Fire You Up For Winter

Winter Sports

This post is for the fair weather hikers, reluctant snowshoers and far too occasional cross-country skiers…like me. I admit it. Winter is NOT my favorite season. The colder it gets outside, the comfier my couch starts to look. With a solid month and a half of winter left (three and a half here in the Mondnock region of NH), it’s time to make peace with the cold and get outside for some winter activity. Since words alone won’t do the trick, I thought I’d track down some of my favorite images of the season to remind us all how much beauty winter brings and how little effort it takes to enjoy it.

Your excuse is invalid.

On cold, dark winter mornings I struggle to pull myself out of bed and feel my way to the light switch in the bathroom. Blind since 2000, Randy Pierce does not have the luxury of being able to see the obstacles in front of him but it didn’t stop him from climbing all 48 of the 4,000 foot peaks in New Hampshire last winter. Think about that for a minute, then tell me again how it’s too cold outside to go for a run or a long walk.

Photo courtesy of Paul Lesure - manager of our South Burlington, VT store who invites you to like his page a Facebook.com/EMSBurlington

Little kids are even cuter when they’re all bundled up.

Nothing takes the chill out of the air like a smiling kid in snow pants. If you don’t have any children of your own, volunteer to do some “baby-sledding” for a friend. You’ll give the grown-ups a few hours of peace, yourself a few hours of pure joy and the kids some desperately needed time away from the TV. Best of all, at the end of the day, everyone sleeps like a baby.


Winter Sunrises and Sunsets Are More Beautiful

To sum up what the infinitely more intelligent people at the Lake Champlain Committee have to say on the matter, you just don’t see purple skies like this in the summer time and the best place to see them is to get outside and head for higher ground. Worried about stumbling around in the dark? We’ve got headlamps for that. If you haven’t lost yourself in the majesty of an early winter’s morning or afternoon, you owe it to yourself to head someplace serene and soak up the less potent sun.

Ice is cool.

Yeah, I know. If you’re the type of person struggling to get from heated car to heated house, a beginner ice climbing lesson might be a tough sell for you. That doesn’t mean you can’t find your own ice formations to marvel at. When I worked in Boston, one of my favorite things to do was walk down to the Charles River and watch the ice form, build and break on the Charles River. Here in New England, amazing ice formations are everywhere, you just have to get out there and look for them.

Snow – it’s not just for shoveling

Come on, now. Doesn’t the image above look absolutely amazing? Tell me you can’t hear that snow “whumping” under your snowshoes or that you can’t picture how those sagging branches would snap back to attention the instant you tap them with your trekking pole. Then there’s the silence. When there’s this much powder in the trees and the  sky is obscured, it’s just you, your exhaled breaths and the occasional sound of snow cascading to the crowd. It’s a beautiful feeling you can only get in the woods.

SPECIAL BONUS PHOTO: Couches are more comfortable  and kitties are even more snuggly after a winter workout.

I think it’s also save to say that hot cocoa, beer and wine taste better, a hot shower/bath feels better and your overall attitude is better as your post hike/romp/ski endorphine rush meets the warmth of home. So don’t just sit there complaining about the cold to your Facebook friends, get out there and immerse yourself in it for a few hours, or at the very least a few minutes. If not because you love to ski, snowshoe, or ice climb, then because it will give you something to remember when you’re complaining about how “freaking hot” it is in August.

Jim Darroch

Jim's love for the outdoors began with family camping trips in "Brady Bunch" style canvas tents and progressed to backpacking adventures with the Boy Scouts. In 2007, he fulfilled his teenage dream by joining Eastern Mountain Sports as Brand Communications Manager. When he's not in the office, you'll find Jim kayaking, hiking, and mountain biking around the Monadnock Region and throughout New England with his wife Brenda and his dog Brewski.