As I walk alone, my thoughts find a gentleness as the breeze that blows around me. I experience a soothing calm that is enriched by being in the moment. I have found tranquility. This is the feeling that I long for when I step outside. It is this moment that got me up before the sun. It is why I chose to sacrifice sleep, lunch with friends, television, shopping, and all else. It is the opportunity to find who I am while walking among the wild places.

Love Where You Live

I live in one of the greatest cities in the world. This is a secret that I should not divulge. From my home, I can find myself at professional sporting events, an international airport, billion dollar businesses, exceptional restaurants, seven world-class ski resorts, and complete solitude on mountain trails all within less than an hour. Many times I have thought about leaving, but this type of proximity makes it hard. Nothing beats the access to wide open spaces right along the boundaries of the city. There are inherent challenges as city and nature collide, but we are figuring it out. It takes consistent responsibility on our part to allow this unity to coincide in harmony.

We humans need the natural escape. It is good for us. It gives us life, calm, and a sense of purpose. It shows us our place. It is by seeing the glorious creations of our God that let us know that He is there. It lets us know that we need Him.

I Love the Outdoors

“The mountains are calling and I must go.”

? John Muir

Ever since I was young I can recall a longing for the outdoors. To use the oft-quoted statement of the great environmentalist, John Muir, “The mountains are calling and I must go.” I grew up to be in the mountains.

I can recall camping a lot with my family when I was younger. It was a lot of car camping, but when I was 10 or 11 I recall one of my first backpacking trips. I went up to the Wasatch Mountains with my father and his scout troop. We were packed and off we went. Within a mile up the trail, it had gotten dark since we left after they got off work. It began to rain. We ended up sleeping under a makeshift lean-to from a tarp. I’ll never forget it and I always want more. I have worked to give my children similar experiences in the outdoors. I love to take them on adventures, whether it is car camping, backpacking, rock climbing, skiing, or just time on a river. These are the moments that help to bring us closer together.

I long for these moments to be in the out of doors. When I was younger my mother would tell me that I was born 150 years too late. I should’ve been a mountain man or on the plains with the Mormon Pioneers. However, I am thankful for the opportunity to live today. We have brought some great technology to the outdoors to improve our experience. We know so much about these places. We can work to care for and preserve these places. I hope that I can do more of a part to protecting these wild places.

The Outdoors Inspire

Every time I am in the mountains I am inspired. I want to be better, do more, and have a greater sense of calm. I come back refreshed and revived. The tranquility of the outdoors motivates me. It lifts me up. I can think with more clarity. I am a better husband, father, neighbor, and businessman.

Whenever I am down, discouraged, or unsure, I escape to the trails. After some time outside, everything makes a little more sense. It is understandable why God took Abraham, Moses, Christ, and others up into the mountains.

Hence, each of us can be better when we make more time to get outside. If you can’t get to the mountains then visit a park, a desert, a stream, somewhere outside where you can find yourself.