All the things I never knew I needed.

In an effort to de-stress and simplify my life,my knee-jerk reaction was to unfollow all the brands and magazines I was following on social. I wanted to get rid of the constant barrage of tweets and posts telling me to do X epic adventure instead of whatever “lame” one I may have planned or that I need to buy all of this shit to properly be outdoorsy.

There are just so many things constantly marketed to us that we allegedly need, and social media went from something that gave me cool ideas or inspiration to making me feel like what I did or what I had wasn’t enough. And I’m a middle-class white person with (some) disposable income!

So ignore what “they” say. Plan the trip that you think is it epic, even if you’re camping ten steps from your car and indoor plumbing. Go hiking 30 minutes from your house. Hell, go for a walk around your neighborhood and notice the cool places you miss when you’re on the bus or in your car. Make s’mores on your grill. Or in your oven for that matter, as long as you sit outside to eat them.

I know I’m just another white lady with a blog. But now that I took away all the stuff you’re supposed to buy or do to be a “real” outdoorsman, or even just to call yourself kind of outdoorsy, I can kind of just relax and enjoy myself.

That’s the beauty of going outdoors. That’s what the outdoors should be. You don’t need to go far for it to be epic. You don’t need much other than what’s in your closet. You don’t need anything except the willingness to give yourself permission to just enjoy the little things.

–EDIT– I’ve been mulling over this blog post for a week or two, and coincidentally Heather at Just A Colorado Gal addressed the same topic and totally hit the nail on the head. Check her post out if you’re wondering whether experienced outdoorsy people are in your corner.

Published by Laura Cardon

Laura Cardon moved to Colorado as an adult and quickly realized how difficult it was to get started exploring the outdoors in a state full of experts. She founded Outdoor Beginner in 2014 to fill the gap in beginner-friendly content for camping, hiking, skiing, and other outdoor activities. In addition to Outdoor Beginner, she coaches beginner trail runners and works at Runners Roost in Golden, Colorado, where she lives with her spouse and toddler.

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