Tuesday, November 24, 2015

A Winter Walk In the Forest

by Jill Kemerer

I'm a nature girl. No, I don't run marathons or climb mountains, but I love to be outside. This can be a problem during the winter. You see, the end of November in northern Ohio tends to be cold, and it only gets colder. The weather doesn't really grow warm until May.

Since I love the outdoors, I layer it up and go out EVEN WHEN IT'S FREEZING. I know! Brr... It's mind boggling! But being stuck inside for months will not do for this gal, so I bundle up and head to one of our gorgeous parks to walk--as long as it isn't single digits or icy.

I took this picture last year on one of my walks. A river is to the left. This scene looks completely different in spring and summer!

Here are some tidbits for anyone unaccustomed to cold winters.

The Hallmark Christmas movies? I love them--seriously love them. However, when they show people wearing coats with open collars revealing bare skin while it's snowing out, I cringe. If it's cold enough to be snowing, trust me, you zip that coat all the way up!

Another issue? If you step outside, you will see your breath. And your nose and cheeks will quickly grow pink from the air. Don't let the flawless faces on TV fool you!

Back to the topic...

Winter walks. In the forest. Right.

When I go to a park for a winter walk, I dress appropriately. If you're jogging or cross country skiing, you'd wear lighter layers because you work up a sweat. Since I'm just walking, my outfit usually consists of a few layers (long sleeve tee under a sweater and leggings under jeans), warm boots and my jacket, scarf, hat and gloves. I always stuff a few tissues in my pocket. The cold air bites, drawing tears from your eyes along with the sniffles.

This cardinal might not be visible in the summer, but you can't miss him in the winter!

Once I hit the trail I'm reminded why winter is special. It's quiet. No rustling of leaves, fewer birds chatting above. The busyness of the forest is less frantic. It's also pretty in a different way. Things hidden in the summer are visible without the leaves on bushes or trees. Brightly colored birds like cardinals and blue jays pop against the grays, browns and whites.

A winter walk in the forest is truly breathtaking.

Remind me to come back and read this post in three months when I can't stop whining about how long winter lasts!

What is winter like in your neck of the woods? Do you enjoy being outdoors or do you prefer snuggling up in a cozy blanket inside?

Have a wonderful day!


  1. Oh, Jill, you made me laugh. I'm originally from Nebraska, and all the Hallmark movies with the itty bitty coats and no scarves around the faces has always made me snicker.

  2. And what about the movies where they go running out into the snow in their pajamas? Eeek! No way! I'm the one who keeps telling the characters to hurry up and close the front door, LOL. That's what comes from growing up in northern Michigan where winter seems to last 8 months. The mom element in me is also telling you to be careful with your footing. Do you use the treads you can strap onto your shoes?

  3. Pamela, YES!! I usually yell at the characters on TV to button up and wrap a scarf around your necks! I'm an interactive viewer--haha!

    Christine, northern Michigan is not for sissies! I grew up in mid-Michigan, where the winters can be harsh, but they're nothing compared to way up north. And winter DOES last 8 months. Do we even get spring? I think we both know the answer to that!

    Have a happy Thanksgiving!

  4. It's cold, Jill, too cold. We've been in the 20's the past two nights which is cold for Charlotte.
    I love being outdoors too, but no matter how many layer I pile on, my teeth chatter like crazy.
    You're right about the Hallmark movies...I never see any chattering teeth!
    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  5. The weather were I am is spectacular! It's been in the 70s for high all week. I lived in Montana and South Dakota when I was a kid. I lived through some frightful winters. So I'm glad to live where winter is minimal.

  6. Jill, 20's is too cold! Brr...my teeth chatter, too! Happy Thanksgiving!

    Merrillee, ooh, I like the sound of 70s! Yeah, Montana and South Dakota are pretty frigid--I don't think I could handle either!

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  7. Okay, in defense of Hallmark, I get claustrophobic if I have to stay bundled up too long so I'm one of those with the scarf hanging loose and the hood off. I HATE wearing something on my head!

    If it's in the single digits or windy, I cave. :)

    I'd love to see photos of that park in the spring, Jill.

  8. Spot on! If I have it my way, I stay in. You're in luck though, they are calling for a little warmer winter than the last 2 years.

  9. The weather has really dropped the last few days. It is now in the 40's. I'm not really a walker unless we go to an outdoor activity like the zoo or botanical garden. I'm hoping to make it to the brewery lights tomorrow. Our Anheuser Busch is decorated with lights for the holidays so that would be fun to see. I love going to see Christmas lights for the holidays. I hope you had a nice Thanksgiving, Jill. I got to enjoy a nice holiday with family since I was off of work.


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