Monthly Archives: January 2016

Have An Adventure Every Day

Adventure is defined as an “unusual and exciting, typically hazardous experience or activity.” Synonyms are exploit, escapade, deed, feat, experience.

I truly think that an adventure can be less hazardous and just plain fun. There are many types of adventures and there is not a “one size fits all” definition! What do I mean? Read my thoughts about adventures below:

1. An adventure is what you make it!

Going to Walmart can be an adventure. You can choose to see life as a schedule or you can see life as an adventure!

2. Your adventure can be within!

Reading a good book is an adventure that I personally love. If you are ever bored, tired of the TV or it’s raining – grab a GOOD book! If you aren’t sure what would be a good book for you, ask your friends on Facebook or visit your local library. You will find that others love to suggest good books.

My daughters enjoy reading. My youngest told me that she was tired of reading about adventures in books and she was ready to have her OWN adventures! I hope that she does have her own adventures! Look out world for this young lady!

3. Adventures can be taking a risk or facing your fears.

Are you the “adventurous” type who rock climbs, swims with the sharks or loves skydiving? Then you are what most people think of as an adventurer. Being someone who loves to take risks with their body takes a special person whom I admire greatly. I enjoy going on an adventure by traveling, but I’m not the daredevil type.

What about a fear that you have? Are you afraid of public speaking, riding a horse or maybe you are afraid to make a new life for yourself? Fears can be a strong emotional and physical barrier to overcome. Yet, many of you overcome your fears with the help of others, time or by facing your fears head on. Stepping out to face your fears is an adventure!

4. Your adventure can be a life event!

Getting married, moving to a new town, having a baby – all life events that are certainly an adventure! You may not consider life events an adventure because they are “natural” to you or maybe even expected as the next phase of your life.

Many of you are expected to go to college, get married and have a family. Sounds boring when typing about that – but it’s NOT boring! Your life is an adventure!

Starting a new business or changing careers can be exciting, scary and satisfying. Yet, I applaud people who have the courage to take this grand adventure of starting their own business or doing what they love. I

In conclusion, adventures come in all shapes and sizes. Adventures don’t have to be hazardous, they can sometimes be just plain fun. For today, have an adventure! Read a book, face a fear, or maybe climb a rock wall!

However you define an adventure, enjoy your life and enjoy your adventures.

 

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Adventure Travel An Exciting And Enthralling Experience

You often hear people talking about adventure travel and that makes you wonder as to what adventure travel actually is. It is something by which u can add adventure and fun to your life. So before going for an adventure travel, you must know what it is. Adventure travel doesn’t mean that you have to endanger your life for your trip to be called adventurous!

The term adventurous is a concept that is not defined physically when you talk about adventure travel. This concept is defined psychologically. Different people have different definitions of adventure. Earlier adventure travel meant going abroad or just traveling to different places. However, its definition has changed today. Adventure travel is when you experience an event rather than being a mere spectator in your travels. It is actually living in the present and experiencing the place and not just sight seeing.

Adventure is different for everyone. What may appear adventurous to you could be totally boring for someone. And that is reason that there are so many options available if you want to go for adventure travel. You can choose the one which suits you, and more importantly the one which excites you! White water rafting or kayaking can be fun for someone. On the other hand camping in an interesting place can de defined as adventurous by some people. Hot air balloon ride may sound boring to you but it can be the perfect adventure travel for some.

Adventure travel is when you get yourself involved in an enthralling experience. It includes boating, kayaking, hiking, sky diving, mountain climbing, scuba diving, sailing, bicycling and much more! You should not indulge yourself into any form of adventure travel in which you are not comfortable. The level of risk in your travel is defined by you just like term adventure is defined individually. Adventure travel is getting yourself engaged into a new experience but make sure that you are totally comfortable in what you are doing.

You can choose a tour if you wish to go for adventure travel. Such adventure travel tours are available for couples and families. But don’t worry in case you are single, adventure tours are also available for you. So you can make a plan for an adventure tour. You can choose a tour which suits you best. These tours usually have two groups of people. One group goes on sight seeing and visits their areas of interest, whereas the other group involves itself in adventurous activities. Of course the type of activity depends on the tour which you have selected.

It is a misconception that adventure travel is only for the younger people. You can indulge yourself into it irrespective of your age. Adventure travel is enjoyed by one and all. It’s not uncommon to see an old couple getting engaged in adventurous activities. Having worked hard throughout their life, they want o experience something new and enthralling. You can meet people from all quarters of life in adventure travel. Now, meeting different people from different backgrounds can itself be very adventurous!

You can choose an adventure travel which excites you. It can simply be going out of the country to some distant place or maybe engaging yourself in bunjee jumping. Whichever activity you choose, just make sure that you are comfortable in it, for there will be no fun and no adventure if you are not comfortable!

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10 Adventure Activities Travel Tips

When it comes to adventure travel the destination should be as adventurous as the activities planned. After all most of us can sky dive, scuba dive or bungee jump at locations either local to us or relatively close by. So when you add adventurous destinations to your adventure activities you have created the ultimate adventure experience. Just remember that many of these activities are excluded from your standard travel insurance so a special adventure activities travel insurance policy may be needed to provide for necessary protections.

Here are my recommendations for some of the top adventure destinations that include adventure activities.

Scuba Diving in Myanmar

For the last half century this southeast Asian nation has been closed to outsiders. Now as it begins to open up you still have an opportunity to visit this land with its diverse cultures before the McDonalds, shopping malls and traffic choked highways arrive. The Mergui Archipelago remains relatively untouched by modern society and scuba diving here will allow you to observe pristine coral reefs and magnificent sea life in addition to the cultural wonders of Myanmar before the modern world arrives in full force.

Bungee Jumping off Victoria Falls Bridge, Zambia

At 111 metres above the Zambezi River the Victoria Falls Bridge is considered one of the best bungee jumping platforms in the world. When your heart settles back into your chest, try a walking safari or jet boat up to the base of the fabulous Victoria Falls. Don’t forget to speak to your travel insurance company about the adventure activities you plan on doing while in Zambia to make sure that your adventure activities travel insurance covers you sufficiently.

Go Kite boarding in Fujian, China

While relatively new to China, the sport of Kite Boarding has been adopted by the people of Fujian in a big way. If you’re new to the sport instruction is available. Other great adventures in China include mountain trekking in Tibet’s autonomous region, although proponents of ethical tourism may wish to consider where they stand on this point.

Hot Air Ballooning in Kenya

OK so Kenya isn’t the great adventure it once was; it’s still pretty adventurous. The adrenaline levels for this trip can be bumped up a notch through a hot air balloon ride. Bump up the adrenaline even more and plan to go during the great migration in the dry season where millions of African migratory animals begin the move towards water. Check with a destination specialist to arrange for this experience. Want more adventure? Try a guided camping safari in the bush.

Surf Oahu’s North Shore, Hawaii

Granted, Hawaii isn’t that adventurous but if you’re a surfer; the north shore of Oahu is all the adventure you need.

Climb Mount Everest in Nepal

Ever since it was first conquered by Sir Edmund Hillary, Mount Everest has been attracting adventure seekers to challenge its slopes. I shudder to think what a decent adventure activities insurance policy would cost for this trip.

Swim with Sharks in South Africa

While not that exotic a trip, your first face to face meeting with a 7 metre great white shark is bound to get your adrenaline going.

Zip line in Cebu City, Philippines

Not adventurous you say? This zip line launches from 473 feet atop the Crown Regency Hotel crossing over to an adjacent skyscraper.

Rock Climbing in Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs, Colorado

From the novice to the advanced rock climber, Garden of the Gods in Albuquerque offers a suitable challenge for every level. Need more adventure? Colorado offers some of the finest skiing in the United States.

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Buying The Best Paintballs Tips

Paintballs Paintballs are made by many different producers, each using similar, but not identical, formulas for the shell and paint. These differences create small variations in the size and shape. These small differences can make a huge difference in your shooting accuracy and the reliability of your marker. This is partially caused by the slight differences in the inside diameters of paintball gun barrels. With a less stringent manufacturing requirement than real guns, paintball gun equipment manufacturers may put out products that offer noticeable inside diameter variations in a barrel from one product line to the next and sometimes even in two similar models.

The best way to determine whether a particular brand of paintballs will work in your marker is to perform the following test. Unscrew the barrel from your paintball gun, drop a single paintball in it. If the paintball rolls through without any restriction from the barrel, the ball is probably not a good choice for your barrel because it is too small. It will “bounce” down the barrel during shooting due to the higher pressures and cause inaccurate results. If the ball doesn’t drop all the way through the barrel and you have to push it out, the ball is not a good choice because it is too large.

What’s “just right?” The paintball should fall completely through the barrel with a very small amount of resistance as it goes through. Remember, when shooting, there will be a large burst of air/CO2 behind the paintball, causing a great deal of pressure. A paintball that is not well-sized for your barrel will reduce the effectiveness of your shooting, either through accuracy or reduced range and power.

You also need to consider the quality of the paintballs you are buying. For example, recreational paintballs are much cheaper than those designed for tournament use, but they are much less consistent. This may be due to a cheap paint or lower quality shell. These paintballs are more geared for someone who is practicing or for players who don’t take many precision shots. Tournament-grade paintballs are the most expensive, but will give the most consistent performance in shooting. Some brands also offer a mid-grade, in addition to the recreational- and tournament-grade offerings. No matter what you select, choose the grade that best suits how you play. Most players use recreational paintballs the most, only using tournament-grade paintballs for competitions or precision shooting positions (such as the sniper).

Choosing the wrong type of paintball can create problems with your marker. For example, if you struggle with paintballs breaking before they leave the gun’s barrel, it could be a problem with the gun (too high pressure, hopper or magazine feed issue, etc.), or it could simply be that you’re using a paintball too soft-shelled for the gun you’re using.

Buying paintballs is likely the most expensive part of playing the sport. If you participate in regular practice, you should probably purchase your paintballs from a local source rather than through mail order. This is primarily due to shipping expenses. A box of 1,000 paintballs weighs roughly 7.5 pounds. This means you must add another $10+ to the overall cost of each order (much higher if you don’t use regular ground shipping).

Two of the most popular brands available (and on opposite ends of the quality and predictability spectrum) are Monster Balls and Karnage. Monster Balls are generally available at Walmart and cost about $26 (for 2,000). They are cheap and readily available, but they are disdained by most players because they have an extremely hard shell, which causes bruising and possible injury. For this reason, many commercial fields have banned Monster Balls for anything other than practice use.

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A Wild Off Road Adventure and Extraordinary Canyoneering Journey to a Wilderness Garden of Paradise

When it comes to wild and rugged wilderness beauty, from its desert bottom floor to its mountain top summits, the state of Arizona exceeds them all! Famous for its extremely hot temperatures, only in Arizona can you escape the heat on a summer day and explore one of its many remote wilderness canyons only accessible by 4 wheel drive and enjoy “non-technical” canyoneering; boulder hopping, wading and swimming through cool and refreshing natural pools making for an adventurous and extraordinary day’s retreat that is simply unsurpassed!

West Clear Creek is described by the U.S Forest Service as “one of the most rugged and remote canyons in northern Arizona”. A stunningly beautiful wilderness canyon, West Clear Creek offers many deep natural pools surrounded by colorful, narrow rock walls which are sure to cool you off on a hot summer’s day. However, most exciting of all, known only to locals for many years, and the reward for your day’s canyoneering adventure through the pools of West Clear Creek, you will be amazed to discover Arizona’s garden of paradise, the Hanging Gardens!

So if you’re looking for a retreat and a great way to escape the heat, and you’re up for a rough and wild off road wilderness adventure and a challenging, yet truly extraordinary canyoneering journey to Arizona’s hidden garden of paradise, then I highly recommend checking out the Hanging Gardens Hike, in the beautiful West Clear Creek Wilderness, Strawberry, Arizona!

Starting out early on a weekend morning in early August, I drove out to a meetup location on Phoenix’s far northeast side where I joined the fellow members and friends of the TLC Hiking Club, a local hiking & outdoors adventure club led by Eric Kinneman. After everyone had arrived and in preparation for the long day and strenuous journey that was ahead of us, we received a briefing including last minute safety and advisories then excitedly hopped into our vehicles and were ready to set out for the adventure we’d all been long anticipating, the Hanging Gardens of West Clear Creek!

Heading north on Highway 87, we made our way into the town of Payson by about 7 am, then continued heading north on 87 out of Payson until arriving 2.5 miles past the intersection of Highway 260. After quickly stopping to regroup all of our members, we got back into our vehicles again and with Eric Kinneman in the lead, we turned right on Forest Road 144, and got prepared for what had been forewarned to be a very rough and wild 4 wheel drive adventure! And that it was indeed too!

After turning right on all dirt road, FR 144, and stopping one more time to regroup, we slowly began heading our way east. Upon arriving at the end of FR 144, we continued by making a left onto FR 149, a left again on FR142 then a right on FR 142A. One by one, we very slowly and carefully made our way along this extremely rough road and wild terrain, winding around forest trees and brush, and up and over large rocks and boulders. Please be advised, these all dirt forest roads are extremely rough and rugged and require having a good 4 wheel drive vehicle, not just an HCV because a result of the recent rain storms that had come through the area, along the way we encountered some very deep and completely gutted out, muddy pools! Thankfully though, everyone made it through okay without getting their vehicles stuck, but wow, what an incredible off road adventure it had been so far!

Once making the last turn onto FR 142J, it was roughly 9.9 miles and 1 hour and 20 minutes later, that we had all made it safely to the end of the road, and were relieved to have arrived at the trailhead. Having finally reached West Clear Creek, and our destination by 9 am, we parked, pulled out our packs and gear, and then gathered round together along the cliff’s edge to wait for rest of the members of the group. There at the top and at the edge of West Clear Creek Canyon, I paused for a few short moments to look around and take a few photos of the amazing and beautiful wilderness scenery all around. How incredibly remote, rugged and pristine this area appeared to be and how very fortunate we all felt to be able to experience this. This was going to be an incredible day and an amazing adventure and we were all very eager and excited to get it started!

After gathering everyone together for a few group shots, it was now time for our canyoneering adventure to begin! Starting from the trailhead at the top of the cliff and with Eric Kinneman leading the way, one by one, we each began to make our way down into the beautiful canyon below. The journey down to the bottom of West Clear Creek Canyon immediately started with a steep decent, straight down about 867 feet, along a narrow but well marked use trail. With a lot of loose rocks and gravel, it was a strenuous trek all the way down which many chose to do by getting down on the ground and sliding it, rather than risk a slippery and dangerous fall.

Having successfully reached the bottom of West Clear Creek, I looked down into the canyon where were headed and noticed just how beautiful this place really was as the sun’s rays lit up the tall, amber colored rock walls. It was just amazing! I took a few quick photos then quickly rejoined the others. From here at the canyon’s deep, cool bottom floor, our canyoneering quickly began with boulder hopping over many large rocks and boulders for a short ways until came to our first pools. Only knee deep at the most, we quickly got into the water and boulder hopped, waded and splashed our way through our first few sets of pools.

By this time, most everyone had at least made it to the first pools and were now reaching further down into this gorgeous canyon with deeper and longer pools closely surrounded by tall, beautifully contoured and narrow rock walls, an area which is commonly referred to as the “White Box” of West Clear Creek. With all of our gear securely packed in dry bags and along with our flotation devices, we slowly swam from one cool refreshing pool to the next, down through the gorgeous canyon narrows and as I continued taking as many photos as I could, the scenery was absolutely amazing and breathtaking!

After briefly stopping for some fun and exciting “rope jumping”, the incredible canyoneering adventure through the beautiful White Box and narrows of West Clear Creek continued as we carefully trekked over the wet, and slippery rocks and boulders, all the while taking in the gorgeous scenery as we swam from one refreshing pool to the next which to our amazement within these pools were many good sized crawfish too! Reaching mid-morning by about this time and with the heat of the summer day coming upon us, our canyoneering journey continued as we slowly moved through one deep pool to the next.

It was reaching noon by now and roughly after 12 pools and close to 3 hours of intense canyoneering, I was beginning to feel exhausted and a little weary. Thinking that I could not possibly make it through yet another pool, we rounded the final bend and while noticing how green the riparian vegetation had become, we got out of the water and looked up; we had finally arrived at the remote and hidden, Hanging Gardens! Wow, it was indescribable! We entered this very lush, green, garden like area, first passing by a beautiful waterfall gushing from over the high cliff above, then moving on and directly to its left, there it was, the Hanging Gardens, a beautiful, cascading waterfall elegantly dripping over thick maiden hair ferns and vines, and wow, what an incredible and amazing sight! I could not believe my eyes. What a unique, remote and truly special place, a real “garden of paradise”, and a remote wilderness “oasis” literally of epic proportions! This place, the Hanging Gardens, was simply extraordinary and so much more than I had even imagined!

Now with most of our group and friends rejoined again, we took a break, ate lunch, did some more rope jumping and thoroughly enjoyed spending some time together taking many pictures and videos, trying to capture every moment that we could of this incredible place. However, it was by about 12:30 and with the afternoon heat of the day now well upon us, one by one we started to make the long and strenuous trek back through the many deep pools and White Box narrows of West Clear Creek, where the towering rock walls now glimmering with the afternoon sun’s rays, made the adventurous canyoneering journey back, even more gorgeous and spectacular every moment of the way!

It was now reaching late afternoon and after having made it through the very last pool, then hiking back up 867 feet to the top and the cliffs edge, we were thoroughly hot and completely exhausted. But wow, what an amazing adventure it had been! It was by about 3pm that we most everyone had finally reached the top and the trailhead again where we were parked completing the day’s canyoneering adventure according to our GPS, was 4.70 miles round trip which we completed in approximately 6.0 hours.

From here, we once again got back into our 4 wheel drives and got ready for the rough and wild return journey back. Miraculously, with only one tire blow out for the entire group, and by about 4:30 pm, we finally arrived safely at the main highway again, having completed the off road adventure according to our stats, was 19.9 miles round trip on what was absolutely some of the roughest, toughest and wildest dirt roads that we as a group had ever been on before! Wow, what an incredible adventure!

In all, really an unforgettable day and an epic, amazing wilderness adventure, that was well researched, planned and coordinated by Eric Kinneman of the TLC Hiking Club. So if you’re up for a rough and wild off road wilderness adventure and a strenuous, challenging, yet truly extraordinary canyoneering journey to a wilderness oasis that is truly a garden of paradise, then be sure you check out the Hanging Gardens Hike, in the beautiful West Clear Creek Wilderness, Strawberry, Arizona!

Laura K. Halik is a writer and published author with over 20 years experience of outdoors travel throughout the state of Arizona and the western region. She is passionate for nature, the outdoors, travel and adventure. Laura enjoys hiking, canyoneering, white water rafting, kayaking, scuba diving, snorkeling, writing, and photography. She is also a co-hiking leader and organizer in a hiking and outdoors adventure club for advanced and experienced hikers.

Throughout her professional career in international business, Laura has worked and traveled frequently throughout the Latin American and Caribbean region. She lives with her family and pets in Phoenix, Arizona.

 

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