By: Yukon Charlie’s Trailblazer, Stephanie Whatton
The mountains are synonymous with life. With every upward footstep, we encounter a new challenge and new possibilities. The same can be said about day-to-day life. Each step we take results in a new connection, a new idea, and certainly a new challenge to overcome. For many who love the outdoors and the time we spend on snowshoes, we view the mountains as a chance to let go of the hardships that come with a daily routine. Have you ever thought if these excursions can also open a door to how we overcome life’s challenges?
The mountains are a test piece for one’s endurance, drive, and ability. At first we are drawn to adventure because of a feeling, or maybe because it is easy to romanticize adventure as a glamorous activity. However, at what point does inability or unpreparedness result in scary situations or even hardship? While in the mountains, suffering seemingly comes out of nowhere, but in reality, it is spun from a series of decisions leaving one feeling in over their head and unprepared. It doesn’t always happen this way, but when it does, learning from one’s mistakes is invaluable.
Adventure is so incredibly important for the human psyche. Where else in life are we presented with immediate feedback from our mistakes? We get into the mountains not to be shut down, but to work these challenges from beginning to end. The result is that we learn more about a place and even ourselves. A summit, a snowy destination, these places have no significance without the genuine struggle of the journey. And after the snowshoe adventure the only way to learn from the inevitable mistake is to reflect. Ask yourself, “What could I have done in that icy section for better traction?” or “Wow, I was really chilly on the way down. How could I have managed my heat better?” With each answer you give, a new realization is made. Next time you head out, you will be even more prepared, and more inspired to try something new.
Everyday life brings with it the good as well as the challenging. How we persevere during adversity reflects how well we are prepared with handling them. Our challenges from day to day life help to mold that we have become, and who we are has been sculpted by the experiences we have had. The experiences found on our snowshoes in the mountains are irreplaceable. It is these experiences, which can help us to provide value to conflict and challenge, and to perceive confrontation through a new lens. If in the mountains, we prepare ourselves for adversity, why should life be any different?