Monthly Archives: May 2017

The Great Outdoors is to be Explored

The thing with enjoying the great outdoors is seeing aspects of life that you do not normally see during your normal weekly activities. The familiar sea breezes, the smells of spring flowers, the winter winds, fantastic views from mountain tops and so much more.

I currently work 60 hours per week in the building maintenance game and don’t have enough time to get out in my own garden regularly, let alone have a really good 4 week break in some exotic location like the west of Turkey looking at sandstone caves. My wife and I have been to 30 countries between us and we will add to our list as our income increases in our respective Home Based Business’.

Having been to islands off the Malaysian coast, islands off the Mediterranean coast, scaled cliff tops in Turkey and been all around Australia, the travel bug rises in me vehemently as I write this article. Travelling is a most rewarding way to meet people, fellow travellers, locals, backpackers, nationals; you get to meet all sorts. Not only do you get to meet wonderful(and not so wonderful) people but travelling teaches you to think on your feet, literally and often laterally.

Sometimes purchasing items in a foreign land like bread, milk and soap can prove quite a challenge. But the memories, the brilliant times you have, enables one to become richer in soul as you use talents and develop a sense of humour you never knew you had. The great outdoors, indeed travel itself, lets you see things you would never have even thought existed. Fancy seeing cows roaming the streets in cities in India, elephants in the suburbs of Bangkok Thailand, rats on the London underground or a snake curled up under your bonnet in outback Australia.

In my experience, the people I have found to be the most interesting are those who have travelled, those who appreciate the great outdoors no matter what the weather or where they are.

Why don’t you be adventurous and explore this great world we live in, see something different, experience those things you have only dreamed of; treat yourself and your family to the pleasure of meeting people in foreign lands, to the pleasure of seeing things you would only ever see on the TV or today on the Web.

Is it any wonder my wife and I have started Home Based Business’ to substantially increase our income so we can win back time, not time lost because that is gone, but time in our future to enjoy ‘Travelling in the Great Outdoors’ with our children and alone when they grow up.

Adventure Travel With Dogs

Have you ever taken your dog on a camping trip? Have you ever spent a lazy afternoon floating down the river with Fido by your side? How about an overnight hiking and camping trip? I have three dogs that seem to know long before we even start bringing the camping bags out that we are going somewhere. They pace and follow us from room to room as we begin our packing adventure; it definitely is not a quiet moment. I would never think of leaving them behind. Our dogs absolutely love the outdoors!

If you are planning to take your dog on any outdoor adventure, prior planning is essential! Taking your pooch with you is much like taking children, you must prepare for them to insure their safety as well as yours and others.

Here are a few tips:

1. Keep your dog leashed, or if allowed; under voice control at all times! Dogs are asked to be leashed for their own safety as much as for the wildlife and other humans. He should have his id tag on his collar at all times. Be familiar with basic animal first-aid for ticks, scrapes or poison ivy and any other emergencies that may come up.

2. Bring some essentials from home, the unfamiliar scents, people, objects and spaces can make the best of dogs nervous. Comfort him by packing a bag with his favorite things from home: blanket/bed, snacks and toys. Anything that makes him comfortable works well. I have one dog that wants to hold on to his stuffed toy the whole time while traveling in the car, and another one that does much better away from home if he has his tennis ball with him.

3. Pick up after your dog – bring lots of plastic bags and scoop it up just as you would at home. Some campgrounds have banned dogs because of the negligence of a few dog owners.

4. Dog manners – your dog should at least have acquired basic training – such as not jumping on people, coming when called and not barking at strangers – even weird strangers, which you are bound to encounter at some time.

5. Plan ahead for everything. Even though no one ever wants to think about having an accident on the road, it does happen. Have a plan (for your dogs) in case of a flat tire, a serious accident, or any other emergency that could happen while you are out. I suggest that you use a dog seat belt; or better yet, have them travel in a carrier. Your dog(s) are depending on you to help them if you can.

6.Keep him hydrated. Dogs and heat do not go well together. Be sure to carry plenty of water, and water him often. We have found out that the backpacks that carry water (sold at bicycle shops) work very well for us. You will have to train your dog to drink from the reservoir, which does not take much if they are thirsty!

7. Learn about your surroundings and prepare for it. Make sure you are aware of the dangerous wildlife, treacherous plants, weather conditions, and any other challenges that you may encounter. If you do not know what you are doing, you might inadvertently be putting yourself and your dog in danger. Use common sense, if your dog is long haired and gets hot easily; do not take him to the desert. He would be much happier going somewhere cooler.

8. If you are renting a canoe, or using an outdoor guide, please abide by all of the rules and take responsibility for your pets. Most businesses expect you to be a responsible dog owner, and they are giving you the privilege to use their services. If your dog is trying an adventure for the first time, please let the owner of the company know, they may be able to help you and your dog feel more comfortable.

9. Camping? Find a dog-friendly campground – do lots of research. Make sure that if pets are allowed, what are the size limits. Are there any restrictions? Do they have a dog run? Are you required to bring and show your dog’s rabies certification? Once there; do not leave her alone in the tent, keep her in sight at all times, and refer to section 4-dog manners. Nothing is more annoying to campers than a dog left barking all day and night.

10. Note that some businesses will ask that you show proof of vaccinations, it is always a good idea to carry a copy of them with you at all times. This is also a good idea in case you have an emergency and you have to take your dog to the local veterinarian. If your dog has special medications, always bring them with you.

11. Last, but not least…if your dog is especially excited, our suggestion is to take them somewhere to let them get some excessive energy released before reaching your final destination. Even a nice stroll in a park will do them good, (and you too!) Your dog will be much more welcomed if he or she is in a calm state of mind.

And most of all….have a great time! Dogs love the outdoors, love exercise and love being with you. Take some lessons from them and enjoy every minute you have with them.

The authors of Campingpet Adventure Club are avid pet lovers and adventure travelers. The Price’s travel often in their pop-up trailer and tent with 3 large dogs (Buddy, Rusty and Fred) and take them hiking, camping and any outdoor adventure that will accept their dogs! They have stayed in campgrounds, public lands, state, Federal Parks, and cabins.

An Outdoor Adventure Through Arizona’s Lower Salt River Canyon

Experience majestic desert scenery, rich riparian nature and enjoy an exciting day of amazing fun and outdoors adventure kayaking down the Lower Salt River. Only a short drive from Phoenix, the Lower Salt River is a very popular destination for Arizonans looking for a way to cool off with “tubing” a widely popular activity for many people during the long, hot summer months. However if you consider yourself an outdoors adventurer and you’re willing to try something new, then I recommend taking a day trip kayaking down the Lower Salt River. Even if you’ve never been kayaking before, the mild and gentle Lower Salt River is an excellent place to start, even if you’re a beginner.

I had never been kayaking before but had wanted to try it for a long time. So when I heard that there was a local group called the Scottsdale Sea and Ski Club organizing a kayaking trip down on the Salt River I quickly jumped on the opportunity and got signed up at the discounted group rate of only $60 which included the kayak rental equipment, shuttle pick up transportation as well as snacks and beverages provided by the club.

Starting our day’s journey early, we headed out east from Phoenix on Route 202, exiting north on Power Road which turns into Bush Highway as it enters the Tonto National Forest. It’s another 10 miles until you arrive at Saguaro Lake. On the right just south of Saguaro Lake Marina, is Saguaro Lake Ranch & Resort where we drove in, parked and got prepared for our day’s adventure kayaking down the Salt River. Down at the shoreline, claimed our kayaks, put our life vests on and were provided a map and a detailed overview of the trip from start to finish by Saguaro Lake Ranch. After the briefing we carried our kayaks and paddles down to the water’s edge and quickly dropped in. Once everyone was safely launched into the water, we were given a “thumbs up” by our leader and experienced kayaking guide, Mike to start our journey on down the river.

Being a first time beginning kayaker, it took me a little while to learn how to use the double sided paddle correctly and easily in order to steer my kayak. After only a few short minutes of “bumper boats” and floating downstream sideways then backwards, I started catching on and began feeling more comfortable, able to work with the speed of the current while keeping my kayak straight, facing forward and away from trees, reefs as well as other kayakers and people on the river. Although we did lose somebody from our group very early on who somehow must have fallen out and lost her kayak, for the rest of our group, we successfully began our exciting float down the beautiful and scenic Salt River.

I’d describe the first portion of the river journey to be probably be the most challenging part as this is where most of the rapids are. I was busily taking lot’s of pictures of everyone kayaking as well as the gorgeous scenery when all of a sudden I looked up and realized I had already approached Snake Rapids and somehow got pulled into an eddy in the river which caused my kayak to veer wildly into the rapids, headed straight for the rocks where it got lodged and stuck! After only a few short panicky moments with nobody left to help, I managed to get my kayak up off the rocks then quickly paddled my way through the rest of the rapids to get caught back up with the rest of the group again. Shortly thereafter, we reached Blue Point Bridge and after picking up our lost kayaker, we pulled our kayaks over to the shore for a short rest break at the picnic area where snacks and beverages were provided.

After the short break, we got back in our kayaks and were on the river once again. From Blue Point Bridge the slows down and the current is much milder. You will notice many more people by now because it is also a section of the river shared by the tubers, making for a much more lively social experience with kayakers and tubers mingling together and enjoying the river experience. As we continued to float on down towards Sand Cliffs, we also passed by many people out fishing and picnicking along the shore some even giving their horses a cool down in the water!

From Sand Cliffs the scenery continues to be absolutely breathtaking and after passing by the exit point for the tubers, you will start to experience more calm and tranquility now on the river with the possibilities of encountering nature more likely so be sure to keep your eyes open and your camera ready. It was literally only within minutes that I looked up to the right shoreline and saw a Great Blue Heron! Blue Herons are very large, grayish/blue birds and common in riparian type habitats. I quickly snapped up a couple of photos while drifting by.

After another regrouping stop, this time at a rock cliff on the river itself, we continued to kayak on past Coon Bluff until we had reached our final exit point, Phon D Sutton, Exit #2. We safely got out, pulled our kayaks up onto shore, then carried them up to the parking lot for loading by Saguaro Lake Ranch. We then got into the shuttle van which had been waiting for us and within 15 minutes we had arrived back at Saguaro Lake Ranch where we had originally started and where our cars were parked. We had dropped into the river at 9am and were finished by 2pm and back in our cars by 3pm. The total time for the trip was 5 hours which included stops and rest breaks along the way.

I highly recommend taking this short day trip which costs only $65 for the day with advance reservations at Saguaro Lake Ranch. You don’t need to be an experienced kayaker as the Salt River is considered to be a great place to start if you’re new to kayaking, like I was. Saguaro Lake Ranch will provide you the equipment rental, instruction, plus shuttle transportation back to your car at the end of the trip. You only need to bring lot’s of sunscreen and water as it does get pretty hot by mid-afternoon as well as your own food or snacks for lunch. In all, it was truly an amazing, exciting day of outdoors fun, beauty and adventure which I plan on doing again sometime really soon!

Laura K. Halik is a writer and published author with over 20 years experience of outdoors travel throughout the state of Arizona and the western region. She is passionate for nature, the outdoors, travel and adventure. Laura enjoys hiking, canyoneering, white water rafting, kayaking, scuba diving, snorkeling, writing, and photography. She is also a co-hiking leader and organizer in a hiking and outdoors adventure club for advanced and experienced hikers.

Outdoor Adventure Travel

Outdoor adventure travel is probably the most exciting travel on the planet. Man (or woman) against nature in the wild – the very idea gets the blood pumping, doesn’t it? Okay, outdoor adventure travel IS exciting, but it can also be extremely dangerous unless you take the right precautions. Outdoor adventure travel is great, but you want to live to tell your story.

“Adventure travel with dogs”

Every year hundreds of people are killed or injured and are in need to be rescued simply because they didn’t use plain old (or maybe not so plain) common sense. You really don’t want to become an adventure travel statistic.

The second-most important need for human survival is water. (Air is first.) When you are on an outdoor travel adventure, be certain that you take plenty of water with you, and if your trip is to be an extended one, learn how to purify water to make it safe to drink. You can survive without food a lot longer than you can live without water.

No-frills packing is an essential part of outdoor adventure travel. Remember that you’re going to carry everything you pack, so pack light. Take the essentials and leave everything else behind. However, you do need to pack the right kind of clothing. Sometimes daytime temperatures can be moderate while nighttime temperatures can be downright frigid. Be sure to take a warm jacket and throw in some extra pairs of socks. Dry feet are important. And so are LONG PANTS – do not pack shorts for wilderness travel.

A basic first aid kit is an essential part of outdoor adventure travel. You can buy basic first aid kits for a reasonable price. Also, be certain that you take a sufficient amount of any prescription drugs that you need. An extra pair of eyeglasses is a good thing to pack, and you’ll need a Swiss Army knife as well as a pair of binoculars and a compass.