Why you should take time to go on a micro adventure
You don’t need to travel to far-away countries to feel the buzz of a trip. Micro adventures are a welcome change to your everyday life – they’re cheap, simple, short experiences that fit into a weekend. Outdoor blogger Martin Stiegler knows just what it takes to plan such an adventure and why you shouldn’t wait any longer.
We’re all hoping to live a life full of thrilling adventures and fascinating encounters. We have big dreams, but find excuses why these dreams needs to wait a little longer. Why? Are we assuming a real adventure is expensive and dangerous? It doesn’t have to be! You don’t need to travel to the North Pole or climb Mount Everest to experience an authentic outdoor adventure.
The magic word is «microadventure» – an adventure on your doorstop. Micro adventures are cheap, simple and quick to put into action, but in no way less thrilling than «real» adventures – and surely just as challenging and fun.
Two reasons why you should plan a micro adventure right now:
1. It makes you happy
Studies on the subject of happiness have revealed that happiness hormones are already released when you look forward to an exciting event you've planned. The anticipation of your microadventure alone will put you in a better mood. Share this happiness with your friends and nothing can go wrong.
2. It keeps your brain young
Discovering and experiencing new things creates new connections to the neural networks in your brain. Science assumes that this can slow down – and in some cases even reverse – the aging process in your brain. Therefore, leaving your comfort zone and experiencing the thrill of adventures is beneficial to your brain.
The best thing about microadventures is that they’re easy to plan and organise and you're guranteed an exciting time without spending much money. Microadventures include trying something new or going to places you've never been to – they’re adventures on your doorstep. The easiest and fastest microadventure to organise and put into action is spending a night outdoors.
Spending a night in the open air: your first microadventure
What if I’m mugged? What about wild animals? Sleeping outdoors might sound risky at first, but there aren’t any dangerous animals in this part of Switzerland (Zurich area) and most people prefer spending the night at home in their bed. Chances are you won’t meet a single soul during all night long. Spend the night on top of a mountain and you’re sure to experience a stunning sunrise while others are in bed dreading the alarm clock.
While some places are completely overcrowded during the day, you can enjoy the quietness and nature by spending the night there – unforgettable sunsets and sunrises included. But be warned: It's addictive! Once you've tried it, you'll want to find a new spot to spend a night again and again.
Are you ready? Yes? Then let's take a look at what you should pack for your microadventure.
1. Rucksack: A 30 litre backpack will do for the start. It's large enough to store everything you need for your first night outdoors.
Traverse 30 (30l)
2. Sleeping bag: You don't need to get the most expensive sleeping bag to start with. Just buy a cheap summer sleeping bag and take long underwear with you to make sure you’ll be warm enough.
CHF 74.20instead of 94.–1
The North Face
3. Bivy bag or tent: To protect yourself from rain and damp morning dew, simply use a small, cheap bivy bag and put it over your sleeping bag. In warm weather, you can also do without and sleep under the stars without any cover. Or you can use a tent.
CHF 149.–instead of 223.–1
Taurus (Dome tent, 2pers., Chute Green)
Gets you toured up and ready to go!
4. Sleeping mat: If you don't find a soft meadow or a dry moss patch, you'll absolutely need a decent sleeping mat to get a good night's sleep. Sleeping mats provide a soft surface to lay on and keep the cold of the ground away. Place it under your sleeping bag and your outdoor bed is ready.
Sea To Summit
Compact and lightweight, self-inflating sleeping mat for backpackers
5. Flashlights and headlamps: You don't want to trip over rocks in the dark. Personally, I prefer a headlamp because you have both hands free.
Actik Core (350lm)
6. Food: Make sure you pack food that doesn't need to be heated up; a sandwich or some cereal bars for instance. Or you can have dinner before you go out and enjoy breakfast at home or on the way.
7. Rain jacket: It might start to rain – you never know.
CHF 209.–instead of 240.–1
L.I.M III (M)
8. Comfortable and warm clothing: Even in summer, it can cool down a lot at night, so good clothing is essential. Also pack a warm hat, as it keeps your head warm – the only part of your body that's outside the sleeping bag.
Word Head Long Toque
9. Water: Two litres are more than enough.
Wide Mouth (1l)
Rank 2 with an overall rating of "very good" in the 13/2015 bottle balance test with consistently good results in terms of robustness, impermeability and extraneous odours.
That's all you need – it doesn't take much to spend your first night in the open air. I hope you're inspired. Have fun!
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