It often seems like our winters here fall short, especially when you realize how much Colorado has to offer in the spring, summer and fall months. Kayaking, hiking, rock climbing, camping, paddle boarding, you name it. The possibilities are basically endless thanks to the much warmer weather and not to mention all that sun in the sky. However, in the winter it may seem like we are not as lucky. Sure we have all those mountain activities, but if the snowboard and ski culture are not for you, or just the cold weather in general, then what really is there to do?
Day dreaming about warmer days during lecture is a go to, but realizing you can start some of these summer-like adventures a few months early changes things. You just need to be a little creative. If you are a road trip person, spend your Saturday exploring Rocky Mountain National Park. It is fairly close to Fort Collins, but just far enough away that you feel like you are still getting out on your own little adventure. Plus if it is freezing out, cruising around in your car and seeing the sights can be just as fun as hiking, but with the added bonus of heat and tunes.
Now most of us are water people, we love our lakes, rivers and reservoirs. Getting out there in the winter seems almost impossible, but that should not stop people from being around it. I spend time up at Horsetooth almost every weekend. If I don not, I get almost nostalgic for it. Sometimes it can even seem better in the winter because it is not as crowded and you can just sit there and appreciate its beauty. Plus you get to think about all the fun to come in the future months while you are there. Just make a killer warm weather playlist, I recommend a country or reggae mix for this. Drive up there with some friends, and take some time at each stop to take it all in.
Camping is something we all long for in the lengthy winter months, but most of us are not interested in freezing our butts off to actually test it out. Instead, one solution for this is to have a camping party. It can be rather amusing and you get some good memories out of it. You just need some of your closest friends and a sense of humor. I did it over the weekend and I would say it was a success. Some steps to take include setting up a tent inside. We set up an Airloung too, just to be extra camping savvy. Having some type of s’mores is always good too. We did not want to use our fireplace when we did it, so we instead found some amazing s’more mix at the store. It was a great substitute. It can also be great if you dig out some games you would not normally play on your stereotypical weekend in college. It changes things up and can bring back some old memories. We played monopoly and it got heated. Buying what you usually drink on summer camping trips adds to the theme as well and make sure to take a ton of pictures, we used polaroids because of the aesthetics.
Eat summer foods
One more simple thing I know a lot of us miss about warm weather is the food. Everything in the winter is so heavy, and it is missing the fresh fruit that comes with summer. Smoothies are my savior; summer in a cup! So try out all the smoothie places Fort Collins has to offer, they may have been what was missing in your life. Take one to Horsetooth next time you go, they will just continue to add to the vibes.