Peggy Varner is a Canadian paddler, freelance writer, and communications professional with a blog about sea kayaking, paddling and perspective. Let's keep it vague (Vaag!) so we can see where it will go.
While the "must paddle in winter" diehards are still out there on the water, I prefer taking shelter in the protection of the woods. The winter wind can be so wicked. I love a good blizzard or two. It's great for dumping lots of snow that we need for better than perfect cross-country ski conditions in the National Capital Region of Canada (Ottawa, Ontario/Gatineau, Quebec).
And ski conditions have been awesome around here!
Another winter love of mine is trail running in the soft fresh snow
Since I've taken up yoga, I find myself bringing yoga along with me on paddles, hikes, and trail running in snow.
Yoga is always there with you wherever you go, once you start to know it. That's the neat thing. You don't always need a yoga studio, you don't always need a yoga mat.
But I am finding it tricky to balance and strike a standing yoga pose on an icy, snowy, fallen tree in big Merrell Col Mid Waterproof hiking boots with thick, sticky Vibram Soles! But they are awesome hiking boots.
Since I Paddled to Yoga all summer and fall with my Malestrom Vital 166 and Boreal Design Baffin sea kayaks in places like the 1000 Islands from Gananoque, Ontario in Canada, the Deer Isle Archipelago from Stonington, Maine, U.S.A., and the National Capital Region of Canada, I discovered how awesome it is doing yoga in the outdoors.
I plan to continue striking a few yoga poses in the outdoors this winter too, in whatever winter gear I'm wearing, in neat impromptu spots that I find along the way. This will be interesting in snow shoes!
I don't know why exactly. But a stump, a fallen tree, granite rock, shorelines and islands, sometimes make me want to strike a yoga pose in the outdoors.
Suddenly I see a spot that I like. It's not planned. It just hits me.
After I do a few yoga poses in the outdoors, sometimes, only one, the big rush of energy I feel surprises and amazes me. A feeling I can't seem to replicate in a yoga studio.
Hiking, paddling, and trail running warms my body up and I feel ready for a few yoga poses. And you can't beat the fresh air rush of the outdoors.
Winter is long in Canada. It can be wonderful. It can be wicked. It's great to have a long list of ways to enjoy winter instead of endure it! I hope you enjoy yours! And have your winter survival plan in full swing!
After a good trail run in the fresh snow and climbing up on a snowy fallen tree for a few "non-traditional" yoga poses, I've got very pink, tingly cheeks (yes, all of them!).
Now, it's time for me to try and catch up with a bunch of movies I've missed that are nominated for the Golden Globe Awards, coming Sunday, January 15, 2012.
Happy trails! Enjoy the best of winter.
Friend of all things YAK.
The biggest waters I've paddled on so far include the Atlantic off Acadia National Park-Maine, Veraderro-Cuba, the Saguenay River from Tadoussac, Quebec, Lake Superior's Apostle Islands off Bayfield, WI, Lake Ontario at Sandbanks, the St. Lawrence 1000 Islands off Gananoque- Ontario, the Pacific off Ventura, Calif. around one of the Channel Islands (Santa Cruz), the Caribbean off St. Martin. I want to get on the water in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and BC. I like little water too! BaffinPaddler@hotmail.com