Why Hiking Is For Everybody

As restrictions are lifting around the globe, and people are excited to stretch their legs and begin to explore their hometowns again, there is a huge amount of people starting to explore the great outdoors and beautiful trails through our bushlands. With National Parks closing their gates due to capacity limits, to carparks overflowing hundreds of meters down the roads, it is an interesting thing to see. The question we are asking, is what is it about nature and hiking that is attracting so many first time explorers and dreamers right now? We share our assumptions and ideas on why everybody is hiking, and if you’re not yet, then maybe you should!

It’s an escape from the real world.
By hitting the trails, and enjoying a short drive out to the countryside (or even your local reserve!) you can feel like you have escaped the crazy and can find stillness. The sounds of birds chirping, the trickle of water down the creek, and the stillness of everything around you just gives the gift of calm and rest, with no expectations in return.

It is fun for the entire family.
Everybody is welcome to hike. From the little legs to the older legs, with so many trails around us, we have the luxury to find the right mix for our social circumstances. You can head out with your friends and partner for an all-day adventure, or take the toddler for a wander out yonder. The options to make a full day of it are endless, and packing a picnic just goes without saying.

It’s a unique form of exercise.
Who doesn’t love finding some incidental exercise in their day, rather than a mundane trip to the gym (which up until this week, has not been an option anyway!). Hiking allows you to enjoy the distractions of nature from the full body workout. The core, legs, back, butt, upper body, and mind are all heroes in the workout that hiking provides! Just make sure you pick you trails wisely based on your starting fitness level, so to enjoy it rather than regret it! *We are talking to you Baldwins Bluff!* Of course you can also fall into the hardcore bucket, and head out for some serious trail endurance if you want as well!

It gives you a different kind of high.
Hiking gives you the kind of high not associated with drugs, alcohol, or all night clubbing. It comes from the sense of achievement. From the rush of accomplishment. From the joy of stepping outside of your comfort zone. It increased your ‘happy hormones’ in a healthy and natural way and you can get the serotonin and dopamine for free!

It’s an opportunity to connect with nature.                                                                              This one sort of relates to number one, but there is just something special about connecting with nature. From the sounds to the smells, gratitude for nature surrounding you is so powerful to a happier existence.

Our word of encouragement.
We are so happy to see so many people out exploring the trails, but we encourage you to enjoy the trails responsibly and with an environmentally sustainable approach. What does this mean? It means following the leave no trace principles, and being respectful of nature. With a gift of gratitude, peacefulness, happiness, calm, stillness and so much more being given to you for free, we ask that you give a gift in return of respect and understanding. Now, get out there and enjoy the trails!

Written by Kate Gibson from The Hike Collective for #SpringintoParks. Find out more about The Hike Collective here.

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Images: The Hike Collective