Appreciating Winter - An Outdoor Leader's Story

Written by Urban Ecology Center
    Thursday, 26 January 2017
Appreciating Winter - An Outdoor Leader's Story

The bitter cold of Milwaukee winters makes it difficult for many to stay active and have any interest in leaving the house to enjoy the outdoors.

Since I joined the Outdoor Leader program at the Urban Ecology Center this summer, I've come to understand that this place can make it possible to have fun outdoors in any weather. I have never considered myself to be a 'winter person,' often opting to stay cuddled up in a blanket on the couch once the temperature drops below 20 degrees.

However, this winter my family and I decided to take advantage of Urban Ecology Center's generous lending policy and give snowshoeing a chance. We borrowed the snowshoes from the Washington Park Urban Ecology Center, but they are available at each of the three locations.

We chose Currie Park as it has been good for other winter activities. It was a beautiful, sunny day with temperatures in the high twenties for our maiden snowshoeing voyage. After making a few unexpected snow angels, also known as falling on my butt, I got the hang of it and began to enjoy it. Both my sister and I had fun making patterns in the snow and looking over the icy river as we shuffled by.

Spending a few hours snowshoeing turned out to be much less terrible than I imagined it might be, and all of the knee lifting made me so warm, I actually had to take off a layer. Thanks to the Urban Ecology Center, I gained a new appreciation for winter and snow as I was able to have fun without turning into an ice cube. I had such a good time, maybe I’ll even try cross-country skiing sometime.

Working at the Urban Ecology Center has given me a chance to reevaluate one of the more challenging times of year for me, to see winter through a new lens, with a more adventurous perspective. Throughout the coming seasons, I invite you all to step out of your comfort zones and start to look at your world through more intrepid eyes. I bet you'll find something exciting and unexpected at the Urban Ecology Center, just like I was able to.

Author: Celie Cole, Outdoor Leader at the Urban Ecology Center


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