Irrespective of season, the most important thing of any adventure is ensuring that one stays properly hydrated. And no matter what one is doing, without water, things usually take a turn for the worse fairly quick. Although the various times of year each present their own challenges to staying hydrated, in my mind the most difficult time to stay hydrated is during wintertime. Unlike say, summertime, when everyone is hot and sweaty and therefore obviously thirsty, during cold weather, the body’s thirst response is diminished, and sweat evaporates faster in the cold air, leading one to conclude that they are not dehydrated when they are. Also, in cold temperatures there is an increased rate of respiratory water loss, which when combined with normal alpine respiratory water loss, leads to faster dehydration as well.
No matter how old you are, or what your situation is, chances are you know someone who has been affected by a disease. Such is the nature of modern life. Despite the horror diseases cause on victims and their friends/families - the suffering of a loved on can also bring people together, causing them to take on challenges or rally round a "cause." Such causes/challenges often are often undertaken to spread awareness or raise money for research toward medical treatment or hope for a cure. They normally entail pushing limits - whether dumping ice water on ourselves, walking for a whole day, or running long distances - we push ourselves in order to encourage other people to sponsor us or share our stories.
From the North to the South, and the East to the West, Ireland is a country with extraordinary natural beauty. While there are a plethora of sites and National Parks to choose from, the country’s top and most well-known natural feature is the Cliffs of Moher. With over one million visitors yearly, and in recent years, over 1.5 million visitors, the Cliffs of Moher are not just the top natural feature in Ireland, but one of the top overall tourist destinations overall, second only to other iconic Irish destinations like the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, the Book of Kells, and the Giant’s Causeway (in Northern Ireland). One of the reasons the Cliffs of Moher are so iconic is because in modern times, they have been featured in all sorts of movies like Harry Potter; but the main reason that they are so popular is because they have been a tourist destination since the eighteenth century, and a historic spot for centuries before that.
The emerald island has 3,171 kilometers of stunning coastline. Some of this coastline – like the Cliffs of Moher, and the Giant’s Causeway is well-known, and well visited. Other areas, however, feature pristine, off-the-beaten track gems with no tourists, and no locals. In the middle of this spectrum is the Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge, the island’s only extreme historic coastal adventure. Created over three hundred and fifty years ago by salmon fishermen to connect Ireland to Carrick a Rede Island, the rope bridge was originally a single handrope which crossed the distance – some sixty feet (20 meters)– and depth – some hundred feet (30 meters) from bridge to ocean. At that time, the local fishermen crossed this rope with their fishing gear and catch to work at the fishery on the island. This fishery operated only during the summer months, and the bridge was dismantled and stored in the winter.
Julian is one of the most popular destinations in all of San Diego County for a number of reasons – in the winter; it is one of the few spots in the county that receives regular snowfall. In the fall, it is also one of the few spots in the county that allows apple picking. Year-round, however, it is popular for its distinctive – and tasty pies. While there are a number of trails one can select in the area in an attempt to mitigate the damage from pie and donut consumption in town, the easiest and most family-friendly with the best view is at Inaja Memorial Park, which is located some six miles to the east of Julian.
San Diego County is an amazing spot with a number of well-known hikes, such as Cowles Mountain (the tallest point within the city confines), El Cajon Mountain (San Diego’s toughest hike), Potato Chip Rock (San Diego’s biggest social media-post-hike), Cedar Creek Falls (the other of San Diego’s most popular waterfall hikes), Broken Hill (San Diego’s best coastal view hike), and last but not least, the hike to Three Sisters Falls. Like all of the hikes on this least, the trek to Three Sisters Falls is, and has been popular for an extended period of time, even during the summer of drought years, when the waterfalls become a trickle, and can be nonexistent. Like Cedar Creek Falls, the hike to Three Sisters Falls has also had its share of bad publicity, with hikers leaving trash, hikers needing to be rescued, and hikers on occasion, dying. While these items led to a permitting system at Cedar Creek, at the moment, the hike to the Three Sisters remains, by and large, unregulated, although as of 2016, plans are potentially in the works to make the “trail” safer for all skill levels of hikers. Despite the past and present risks, the hike to Three Sisters is a unique San Diego backcountry experience that despite the crowds, lives up to the hype surrounding it.
Among outdoor enthusiasts, through hiking the Pacific Crest Trail (“PCT”) is one of the most coveted accomplishments. But at 2,650 total miles, completing the PCT is a daunting task that requires a substantial amount of time. As a result, instead of completing the PCT in one fell swoop, many hikers elect to “section hike” – hike sections of the trail – over an extended period of time. While perhaps not as glamorous as a through hike, section hiking allows hikers to complete the trail at their schedule, and allows one great latitude to appreciate the many hidden gems that are along the PCT. One of the first hidden gems along the PCT is Kitchen Creek Falls, a seasonal waterfall that is just off the first section of the PCT near Campo, California. Irrespective of whether one is starting out to complete all of the PCT, section hike the PCT, or head out for a day hike, Kitchen Creek Falls is a great destination year-round.