5 Tips for a Seamless Weekend Adventure Outdoors

When they decide to head outdoors for the weekend, nine-to-fivers can't afford to waste even a minute of their valued free time. With a little preemptive planning, you can optimize your experience, while avoiding common issues that can ruin a trip. Here is our advice for how to maximize your precious time off and make the most of your weekend adventures.

Do some research. You can save yourself a lot frustration and wasted time by doing some research before you head out for your adventure. Perform a Google search of your destination to learn about the most popular trails and points of interest. Check to see if you will need a permit and read up on any regulations, so you won't end up with a fine. You will also want to find out if there are any temporary issues, such as trail closings or fire bans due to drought conditions.

Make a plan. Spontaneity can add excitement to many activities. If you're planning an outdoor adventure, however, you should have a plan. Not only will this help you maximize your time; it will help you sidestep troublesome issues. Make sure you know exactly how long it will take to complete a hike, so you won't have to complete it after the sun sets. Check the weather forecast and pack the right type of clothing. You should also make sure you bring safety essentials, including a flashlight, a first-aid kit, sunscreen and plenty of fresh water.

Organize your gear. When they hurry off for weekend outdoor getaways, people often forget something important. A few days before your trip, be sure to make a checklist that includes all of your essentials, including food, water, toilet paper, a portable stove, pots, pans, eating utensils, a tent, sleeping bags and anything else you think you might need. You should also take some time to test out any new gear to make sure it will actually work when you need it.

Unplug. To fully enjoy your weekend adventure, you need to be fully immersed in the experience. This can't happen if you are regularly checking your phone for texts and emails. Make the most of your time off by putting your phone on airplane mode. This way, you can still take photos and videos, while remaining disconnected from your work life. Let your boss and coworkers know that you will be unavailable until Monday morning, and commit to living in the moment, while you're enjoying nature's beauty.

Pack up the night before. Nothing will kill your momentum like having to tie-up loose ends immediately before you set off for your weekend trip. Make sure to have everything packed up the night before, so you can hit the ground running in the morning. If you need a fishing license, get it a day or two before your trip. You will also want to make sure you have a full tank of gas, along with plenty of snacks for the road, so you won't have to make any unnecessary stops.

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