Self Care in The Backcountry
Alaskan summer is in full swing, and the season is prime for getting outta dodge to take advantage of all this magnificent landscape has to offer. Whether your summer trails lead you high up the mountain, deep into the woods, or far up river, the smallest of self care rituals can go a long way in keeping you comfortable, happy, and feeling like a goddess of the wilds on backcountry adventures.
Read on for a few favorite ways to ‘treat yo’ self’ and live large, even while packing light:
Splurge on sweets
I can’t speak for everyone, but when it all boils down I am a creature motivated by food. There is no sweeter reward at the end of a long day hiking/paddling/fishing than a delicious meal and a tasty sweet treat before crawling into your tent for the night. When planning and packing for a trip, go big and splurge on something sweet & tasty. Get yourself that extra dark extra fancy top shelf chocolate bar, or take the time to pack up a bag of your favorite cookies and know that your future self, sweating, exhausted, and exhilarated at the peak of the trail, will thank you.
Love Thy Self
There’s no doubt that part of the joy of backcountry travel is embracing the grunge that comes along with life in the great outdoors. However, while we’re embracing the grunge, its important to be mindful of taking good care of this body that’s carrying us deftly through bear and mosquito country & eventually back to civilization. Bring along a skin-loving salve or butter, like the Fisherman's Salve or Aches & Pains Ointment, and relish in the ritual of massaging your weary muscles and nurturing weathered skin at the end of a long day of tripping.
Be Frivolous & Get Weird
We civilized humans NEED wild places and the time to explore them so that we don’t forget what it feels like to be absolutely completely wildly FREE. There is no better time or place than a backcountry trip to really throw the shackles off and let your freak flag fly. Safety and risk management in trip planning is a serious matter, but you should also plan for some frivolous nonsense to take place and keep the mood and spirits light when the going gets tough. I recommend packing glittery foil tattoos, a Hawaiian shirt or two, perhaps a wig if space allows, and certainly glow sticks. Pair these things with a portable speaker and funk music for an exceptionally wild time.
How do you intend to get out and get after it this summer? And what are some of your favorite ways to keep the self love alive in the backcountry? Tell us in the comments!