It’s not about not seeing other people, but it’s more about losing yourself in the wildness of the natural world from which we came from and evolved from. When you’re in the forest in the winter, you can no longer hear cars, trains, planes, human voices, gun shots (hopefully), nor be bothered by all the sounds humans create. When you’re left with the natural sound of the wind creaking the trees, then a great peace can come over you, and if you meditate, there is no better place or time to reconnect with not only Nature, but with yourself.
After years of doing so, I despise living in a city, so it’s not a problem for me anymore, but when you do live in a city and your everyday is surrounded by the hustle and bustle of modern life then you never have a chance to be alone, with your thoughts, with peace, in tranquility. I am a firm believer that too much chaos leads to a full and clouded mind, which leads to a condition where it’s difficult to think clearer, to rise above emotions, and to be fully in control of your life, and feelings, and it’s possible your overall happiness level has dropped with being constantly surrounded by too much clutter.
So this winter, plan a trip, even if it’s only for a few hours and then you’re back again. I find camping in the wilderness in winter to be a worthwhile experience, because sure it’s a lot of work, and you must adept yourself with skills and techniques to ensure optimal survival and basic comfort. When you have time to fully disconnect, you allow yourself to recharge. I feel like every idiot on the road, and every loud sound, every advertisement, and every situation causes my heart to raise or my tension to boil, a little part of my soul is chipped off, and the only way to truly get it back is to recharge in Nature.
When you do plan a winter trip, I can’t stress enough how important it is to plan accordingly. Survival in the wilderness in any season can be dicy if you don’t have the proper experience. Survival is about understanding the situation you’re in with a level head and acting strategically, so for winter camping for instance, be sure you know how to make a fire in winter weather, and how to find your way back out, and how you will deal with a set back like an injury or a winter storm worsening your situation. You always want to come prepared with enough clothing to layer properly, and a knife, and water, and food, and etc. The list goes on, but the point is that if you want to try this for yourself, you need to take some precautions. Study what you don’t already know and pack for whatever might come.
For serious trips out in it, I go nowhere without Midland’s Weather Radio and Base Camp Two-Way Radio. Especially when you’re in real mountains, like the Rockies, then you don’t want to venture too far without knowing what’s happening in the weather. Sometimes, you can be prepared, yet the weather may turn in an instant, and when you’re in serious mountains, that statement is truer than any other words I’ve ever spoken. It can be scary, so having a weather radio is very important, as is having a way to communicate outward, in case the worst does happen.
Midland’s XT511 GMRS Base Camp System is a sort of hybrid, as it has the NOAA Weather Alert features, but it’s also a two-way radio. Midland boasts the XT511 as the most powerful portable GMRS radio allowed by law. What makes the Base Camp model so important is that it comes with a walkie-talkie that can reach out to 22 channels with five different power settings. Beyond the AM/FM Radio and the weather alerts, this radio can save your ass when the worst comes to meet you at your tent door. If you find yourself injured, stuck in weather, or lost, this is the radio that can save you by reaching out to others in your area.
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(Main photo by kittysfotos via Flickr)