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The Canary Islands are nothing if not a varied holiday destination, at once offering the horizontal tranquility of golden beaches and the rugged beauty of Lanzarote’s stark, volcanic landscapes. Therefore it’s no surprise that an excursion in this diverse corner of the world requires an eclectic range of kit.  Luckily for you, in this post, our friends from the island of Lanzarote, Optima Villas, will be providing some practical tips on what to take when embarking on an excursion to the Canary Islands – leaving you fully prepared for all these incredible islands have in store.   Invest in hardy footwear First things first, let’s talk footwear. While flip-flops may be your go-to choice for relaxing poolside at your luxury Lanzarote villa or heading to the beach, you’ll need something a little more robust on your feet if you want to experience the Canaries’ true beauty off the beaten track. From craggy cliff faces and rugged lunar landscapes to sandy deserts and lush forests, one thing your walking shoes will need to be prepared for is a varied terrain. Flimsy plimsolls and sports trainers won’t cut the mustard if you’re planning to explore on foot, so be sure to pack...
With more people getting out and enjoying our wild places, there is increased impact on the places we travel. As good steward of our public lands we need to take steps to reduce our impact and take care of the places we play. Hammocks are a prime examples of minimum impact shelters.  When used with appropriate, tree friendly suspension systems, hammocks don’t alter the natural environment. The smaller our footprint, the less likely we are to impact existing plant and wildlife.
Winter HammockingThough it might seem far from a wonderland at times, with freezing temperatures and icy sidewalks, winter has a lot to offer the outdoor adventurer. For the adventurous spirit, cooler temps open up the door for skiing, snowboarding, and all kinds of winter treks. When there is snow, even a familiar neighborhood can become an exciting new world of sledding, snowball fights, and shenanigans! Any winter activity will require special some preparation. From keeping your head, hands, and feet comfortably warm, to making sure you don’t lose any toes to frostbite, the proper precautions can make a huge difference. Here are some ways to make sure you’re not caught off-guard before going into the great outdoors this winter: The items you pack will depend on your specific activity. For example, if you are running in the cold weather, you should dress in layers; you can take some off if you get warm, or put more on if you get too cold. In the winter, you should always have extra gloves, hats, sweaters, and socks in case you need to layer up or if your clothes get wet — especially if your plans involve snow. Certainly, the equipment you need depends...
Backpacking with dogsEveryone has their own preference when it comes to backpacking, some people love to go ultralight, some are more in it for comfort, and others want practical. For backpacking with a dog, being prepared without over packing is my main goal. Below, I have my list of items I consider essentials and would never leave the house without when backpacking with my dog Goose. 1.) Dog backpack I am aware not all dogs can carry a backpack either for size or age of the dog, but if your dog is healthy enough then I say take advantage of it! If you don’t know if your dog is ready for a backpack I recommend taking them to your vet and asking your vet to conduct a physical exam to determine if they are physically ready to wear a backpack. Ok so your dog can wear a backpack that’s great, just remember to not dive right into a backpack full of dog gear remember training is key to keep your dog happy and healthy. Start with short hikes and lightweight in the backpack and slowly increase the weight to the target weight. A maximum of 25 percent of your dog’s body weight is a rough estimate. But...
Growing up I ran the urban streets and tracks of St.Louis, Missouri, but eventually running became something I had to do and not something I wanted to do. I stopped running shortly after this. About a year later, I discovered trail running and rediscovered my love for running. When I first started trail running though, I was shocked with just how difficult and exhausting it was. I say this not to discourage but to make you aware that the first time you try this you may get discouraged too. Here are some trail running tips I wish I knew before I hit the trails. 1. Safety Making sure you are safe is one of the most important things you should do when trail running. A good rule of thumb is never trail run alone. Invite a friend or have your furry friend tag along. I do understand though that running with someone else isn’t always entirely possible. Just be sure to tell someone when and where you are going. You never know what may encounter on the trail and it’s always a good idea to have a safety backup. Be as prepared as possible. I compiled some questions to ask...
This past weekend I explored a new hike in Yosemite National Park! I hiked to two beautiful lookout spots off of Glacier Road: Sentinel Dome and Taft Point.
I’m all about exploring unfamiliar places. I mean, I’m in the desert, so “yay” to seeing more than cactus and dirt. Iceland really didn’t make my list until earlier this year.
Info-Graphic by James Kaiser Make your voice heard! The Department of the Interior is currently seeking public comment on the proposed review of 27 national Monuments. The comment period closes July 9, 2017. Comment here: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=DOI-2017-0002-0001  
If a picture is worth a thousand words, what is a video worth? Making a video of a trip is always a great idea for many reasons. To name a few, you can share with friends and family who couldn’t join, you can watch it later to bring back some great memories, share it on social media, or it can be used as a guide/review for others to see what a certain trail, site, trip is like. The 4 keys to an adventure video are landscape, activity, music, and people. LAMP. If you include all the LAMP attributes your video will be award winningly adventurous! Landscape Where are you? Show us! If you are on a road trip, you can get some great shots of the road and the landscape around you. Every road trip video is not complete if it doesn’t have some shots of the road. You can take a time-lapse video of your whole entire drive. Another great shot can be with your camera out the passenger window where you can show the trees, mountains, canyons, or water beside you. Slowing down or speeding up your video when you edit turns out really cool. If you are...

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