By now, most of us have been social distancing and sheltering in place for over a month due to the coronavirus. The term, “stir crazy” has a whole new meaning to it as many of us begin feeling the distance between our family, friends, and neighbours grow longer and longer. While the occasional virtual catch-up with friends or virtual happy hour with your co-workers does wonders for fulfilling some of that social need, you’re probably still disappointed missing all the fun, spring outdoor activities you had planned before the pandemic hit. However, all is not lost.

While the nation (and many parts of the world) continues to battle with the coronavirus, there are still plenty of safe ways to get outside and enjoy the coming spring and summer. While we, of course, wish we could be enjoying a weekend camping trip with our closest friends or the annual family BBQ, the health and safety of our communities rely on our commitment to social distancing. In the meantime, try out some of these fun outdoor activities while we all weather this storm together.

Hunting For Treasure

While most states in the U.S. are still under shelter in place and travel ban orders, many also express that people can still go outside in the areas around their homes. Keep in mind though that you probably can’t go very far because of said orders, however, you can still start up a new hobby in the confines of the area around your house, like geocaching. What exactly is geocaching, you wonder? Simply put, it’s a treasure hunt!

As some treasure hunting experts explain further, geocaching is a game that started twenty years ago and uses GPS coordinates to help treasure hunters find the geocaches in their neighbourhood. They go on to also explain that, “a geocache is defined as a hidden container that includes, at a minimum, a logbook … the logbook keeps track of each person who has found this geocache. The game of geocaching began in May 2000, with only 75 hidden treasures. Now, there are well over 1 million hidden geocaches. Each week, approximately 6,500 new geocaches are hidden and 1.4 million log entries are filed at the Geocaching website online.”

You can use a GPS device to search around for buried treasure or invest in a metal detector, which can provide entertainment beyond geocaching. There are also great online resources and helpful tips that you can peruse to aid in your geocaching quests. The best part is you can go treasure hunting solo or with your S.O., meaning you can enjoy time outside while still following the health and safety guidelines of your state.

Find Adventure In Small Spaces

Camping is a favourite past time — especially in the warmer seasons — for a lot of folk, but as the coronavirus continues to force nationwide closures, many of your favourite camping spots will likely not be opened as we enter the spring and summer. While it’s obviously not a perfect substitute for everything mother nature has to offer in places such as our national parks, your own yard is a great place to try out some of your favourite camping activities.

If you’re an avid camper, then you likely already have all the supplies you need. Set up “camp” somewhere secure and bring in all the necessities like your favourite snacks, flashlights, and some of your favorite board and card games. With enough creativity, you’ll be able to immerse yourself in the fun by making s’mores (even if you just make them in the microwave) and telling the best scary stories you know to your kids, roommate, or spouse. There are numerous ways to embody the classic RV activities that always make your adventures even better — just put your imagination to work!

Remember Why We’re Doing This

As disappointed as you are to be missing out on some of your favourite activities as well as having to spend time apart from your loved ones, it’s important to keep in mind why we have come together to shelter in place and practice social distancing. At times, it can be easy to resent your public leaders for asking you to stay inside. However, when you take the time to stay informed on current restrictions and concerns, the present situation becomes a bit easier to swallow. Global health affects all of us, which makes us all at least partially responsible for each others’ health.

Finding ways to help your community, whether that’s supporting small businesses or offering to do the grocery shopping of an elderly neighbour, can help make this time a bit easier to deal with. Kindness and service can go a long way in the face of a pandemic. If you’re unsure how you might be able to give back, contact local homeless shelters, animal shelters, or ask around on social media for ways you can help. By sticking together we can improve not only our own lives during the coronavirus but our communities as well.

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