I know I’ve talked about how much we love fall hikes in the cool weather, but winter hikes are just as fun. Granted, they are even better if there is snow on the ground, but hopefully that is yet to come! Covid messed a lot of things up this year, but there are definitely some good changes that businesses and events have made ~ curbside pick up at every store and restaurant, extra sanitization of shopping carts and touchable surfaces, and now this winter hike series. The Metro Parks around Columbus used to do once a month “winter hikes” on a specific Saturday, and hundreds of people would show up for this event and all hike together. We never went because that just didn’t sound appealing. Well, instead of the group meets, the Metro Parks now have “passport booklets” and you get a stamp from a park ranger at each park when you visit this winter. If you go to 7 of the 18 you get a badge of some sort, but if you go to all 18, you get a walking stick! Naturally, we are aiming for that walking stick 🙂
Another thing some of the Metro Parks are doing is Christmas lights after dark. Highbanks, Inniswoods, Blacklick Woods, Chestnut Ridge, and Homestead, all have beautiful lights from 5-8pm. Now, it’s nothing like the Columbus Zoo – not a ton of lights or music – but it’s peaceful and serene. Sam and I went to Inniswoods the other night for a little date night walk and it was wonderful. The kids likely would have been disappointed and complained about the lack of lights, but it was perfect for a date night 🙂
Don’t let the cold weather stop you from exploring! Get out and pick up a passport booklet from a park ranger and start collecting those stamps!