Living in Seattle, it's hard to ignore the natural resources that are literally in our backyard. To help you make the most of your precious time outside, Seattle mag contributor, Roddy Scheer is taking the reigns covering the outdoors for the scoop blog beginning this month. A travel and nature enthusiast, writer and photographer, Scheer's insights will be a great resource for those of you who are hungry for outdoorsy news and ideas.
Not sure if hiking, biking, fishing and camping is quite your thing? Check out this Q&A I did with Roddy last week for tips on becoming one with nature and much more:
What are a few of your favorite ways to experience Washington’s vast natural resources?
While Washington may be a big state as compared to back east, it is all very accessible to cars if you are willing to hunker down for a drive. The national parks always deliver, but I also like to get off the beaten path and explore the backwaters of national forest land, state parks and other less popular yet no less dramatic places. Camping on the beach on the Olympic Peninsula and climbing to the crater-summit of Mt. St. Helens still rank as two of my greatest life experiences; these trips and hundreds of others are right out our back door.
So often, people flock to Seattle **hoping** to become outdoorsy. What advice do you have for that person who is interested in getting outside but doesn’t know where to start?
The best way to get involved is to find friends with similar interests and then motivate each other to greater and greater heights. There is plenty to do and see right here within Seattle, such as running, bikng or blading along the Burke-Gilman Trail or hitting the water in a kayak, canoe, crew shell or even stand-up paddle board. Those looking to go a little further afield can dust off the old mountain bike for some gnarly single-track in the Cascade foothills, or bag a panoramic snow-capped peak on foot within a half-hour's drive. The important thing is get out there, rain or shine, clear your mind, and work your body.
How did you become interested in the outdoors?
Spending my summers as a kid in coastal Downeast Maine gave me a great appreciation for the woods and the water and those elements of nature beyond the control of humans. As a teenager I backpacked through Oregon's Cascades, which opened up a whole new world for me in terms of magnificent vistas and wilderness experiences, and at that point I decided to dedicate my life to protecting the natural environment with the pen and later the camera.