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Adventure at your doorstep

Adventure is right at your doorstep, just walk outside. No need to look very far, sometimes all it takes is an hour stroll or drive to reach the middle of nowhere. A weekend backpacking trip or simply an evening outing offers the chance to take a break from your daily routine and snub your nose for a moment at Father Time.

April 17 2019

Backpacking and trekking

In the mountains above the city of Grenoble (France), spend the night along the shores of Robert Lake near Chamrousse: you are just an aerial-tram ride away from this micro-adventure.

Let the sun set the pace to take full advantage of the day’s most breathtaking moments as you wake up before dawn or head to bed after dusk. Every day lasts as long as you want. This sense of freedom increases awareness, enhances the emotional experience, and offers a reminder that a tent, a sleeping bag, a headlamp, water, and food is all anyone really needs to be happy.

Daring to come out at night

As the day comes to a close, look for a forest clearing, an open field, or a meadow high above the last signs of civilization to step into your local middle of nowhere. After setting up your tent, sit down in the grass at the edge of the woods to become fully aware of your awakening senses as night falls. Listen to the sounds of nature, now so amazingly amplified. It is at this precise moment that the magic begins. The animals, seemingly invisible, now dare to come out in plain sight. If you are not sitting upwind and remain quiet, they may even approach your location without seeing you. These fleeting encounters are only possible if you make the effort to blend into the surrounding landscape. 

When backpacking, wake up before dawn and set up position in the silence of the dark to observe wild animals roaming along the edge of the forest. 

Animals in hiding

The next day, wake up before dawn to watch the sunrise. The area’s wild animals cautiously return to their hiding spots. In the darkness before daybreak you just might see the silhouette of a doe and its fawn as they fade in silence into the dark shadows of the forest. Certain birds quiet down as others take over. The light changes to the rhythm of the surrounding sounds. Little by little, buzzing insects invade the warming air, and the landscape, first covered in shades of deep blue, now bathes in a golden light. Open your eyes to these unique moments that always offer something new to see. 

In the high-alpine pastures of Chazelet (French Alps, near La Meije Peak), bask in the rays of the rising sun as you kick off a new day of adventure.

In explorer mode

Next, to rattle your senses, start this beautiful day by exploring your region’s hidden treasures. Through Geocaching’s app, or by asking for information at the local tourism office, you will undoubtedly discover amazing places near home that you never knew existed. Caves, old mushroom farms, ravines, waterfalls, long-forgotten shelters, and so many other fantastic places that, until now, you had simply overlooked. Among the caves and ravines, only venture into and down those deemed accessible. Equipped with at least a headlamp, and warm and waterproof clothes, dive into the darkness and lose track of the minutes and hours ticking by on the surface.  

In the Jura Mountains (France), Geocaching’s app offered us the chance to explore the hidden yet very accessible caves in an area that we thought we already knew like the back of our hands.

These adventures are simple, accessible, and easy to organize. They offer a sensorial and emotional experience that changes how we perceive the world around us. Two days feel like a week. This break with your daily routine provides a sense of freedom, fulfillment, and the feeling of control over your life. All that you really need is a willingness to step outside your comfort zone. Do not miss these special moments that transform your life into a daily adventure. With the right gear, embark on unforgettable sensorial experiences right outside your doorstep.

On a road trip or on foot, we head off as soon as we can to explore our region. Here, in Ubaye Valley (Southern French Alps), is a well-preserved hidden natural gem, the perfect place to experience a breathtaking adventure in the great outdoors. 

Enjoy a micro-adventure alone, with friends, or as a family. Make sure you are well equipped, and dare to venture beyond your doorstep.

CHECKLIST: 

  • Hiking boots or shoes.
  • Proper clothing for hiking (a technical breathable base layer, a fleece or softshell jacket, the right pants, a waterproof jacket…).
  • A hat and sunglasses.
  • A first-aid kit.
  • A sleeping bag.
  • 1.5L of water per person per day.
  • Enough food for each day.
  • A headlamp.
  • A topographic map of the area (ex.: IGN in France, USGS in the USA).
     

Optional: 

  • A camera.
  • A travel diary or a sketchbook.
  • Binoculars.
  • Hiking poles.

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