INTRODUCING OUTDOOR HOURS: If someone were to ask you, “What’s been one of the most memorable hours of your entire life?” you’d be sent back in time, recalling those small moments that changed it all and showed you who you were, when life made sense and in that brief moment you’re right where you’re supposed to be, and when, simply stated, you are happy. Outdoor Hours is about these moments: They are the stories of one of our most memorable and unforgettable hours spent exploring, told by the people in this world that prefer a life beyond the closed door. To kick things off right, today I share with you 5 amazing hours spent in the outdoors, be it SUPing across Hawaii’s channels from dusk until dawn, to scary moments of self realization, to simple moments of life reflection. Each story goes to show just how much 1 single hour can impact our lives in so many different ways. Enjoy. The Hour I Watched the Sunrise as I SUPed Across Hawaii’s Ka’ie’ie’waho Channel Written by Jenny Kalmbach, 2011’s SUP Awards Female Paddler of the Year, she shares the story behind the time she set out on a mission with Morgan Hoesterey to raise awareness for plastic contamination in the ocean. Their adventure, Destination 3 Degrees, spanned nearly 300 miles and crossed all the major channels in Hawaii, including the 82-mile Oahu to Kauai channel. No easy feat indeed, and one badass chick for sure, her Outdoor Hour piece is sure to inspire. READ IT The Hour I Realized This Ordinary Backyard Lake Has Never Been So Unordinary Written by Raam Dev, he shares the story of an hour spent looking out on a horizon that he’d looked out on many times before growing up in a small rural town about 40 miles north of Boston, Massachusetts. Raam has traveled all over the globe with nothing more than 1 single backpack, the clothes on his back, and the shoes on his feet, yet here he discovers it doesn’t take a grand view in a foreign country to find peace and piece of mind. READ IT The Hour I Learned That I’m an Outdoors(wo)man On The Volcanic Bluffs of Isla Palenque Written by Emily Kinskey, she shares an inspiring story about how you be in every way shape and form in love and active in the outdoors without having to be an athlete. You don’t need the most expensive gear, or hours upon hours of practice, or elite competitions to train for – sometimes, you just need a passion for exploring and a bit of wanderlust. READ IT The Hour I Almost Got Eaten Alive by Coyotes Camping in Minnesota David Sandel, writer of DudesWithTents, shows us how a man protects his woman in the middle of nowhere when a pack of coyotes decide to join them for their campout. From tree climbing to crafting spears, he did what he had to do to in one of the scariest, and most memorable hours of his life. READ IT The Hour I Almost Lost It All: The Falling Climber Jeline Guiles, who is one of the most inspiring and authentic boulders out there paving the way for female climbers with her website Climb On Sister, tells us the story of the hour she realized just how much she loves her sport. As the saying goes, it’s not until you’ve lost something that you realize just how much it means to you. Fortunately, sometimes the most bitter-sweet situations, lead to the most wonderful realizations. READ IT 2 Responses Raam Dev November 1, 2012 Lauren, Thanks so much for inviting me to be part of this amazing series! David’s story about spear-making and coyotes sent a chill through my body. I’ve feared having a similar experience while out camping but while the coyotes have made their distant presence known on several occasions, I’ve been lucky not to have seen them. I’m looking forward to reading more stories!