Mountain sports and activities are the favorite hobby and past time of many people. There are activities during all seasons of the year, including skiing, climbing, hiking, rock climbing, and biking. Some people like to backpack through the mountains and camp in flat, accessible areas in the warm weather and snowboard in the winter snow. These sports and interests help participants stay in shape and maintain their cardiovascular health. Each activity takes place in nature, so the added bonus of fresh air and the peacefulness and beauty of the surrounding area is relaxing and healthy.
There is always adventure in a mountain area, which makes it a very popular holiday and vacation spot. Those who love skiing wait all summer long for the first snowfall, and they closely monitor the 5,000 webcams that continually stream live updates on any snowfall around the world. Skiing requires a lot of special equipment, such as skis, goggles, gloves, hats, and a pair of ski boots. Clothing designed for staying outdoors for a period of time is also necessary. Some of these items include warm underwear, sweaters, pants, bibs, vests, and jackets.
It is possible to ski or snowboard at mountains located all around the world, on every continent. In North America, the mountains of Alaska, Canada, and the United States provide many ski areas in Washington, Oregon, Alaska, and in British Columbia. Over half of the states in the U.S. have ski resorts, and Canada has many as well. South America offers the sport in Argentina and Chile, and there are mountains to ski in Australia and in New Zealand. Europe is known for some of the best skiing in Switzerland, Italy, Germany, France, Austria, and Andorra. Those who appreciate the snow flying their face as they descend down the mountainside often travel to as many peaks as they can get to in their lifetime because devoted skiers are passionately devoted to their sport.
Mountain climbing is another winter sport that is loved by many. Special tools and gear are required for this activity as well, such as special shoes, ropes, hooks, and tool kits that enable the climber to ascend the mountain. There are many other supplies, such as climbing holds, footholds, a harness, and knives and other tools and equipment that the climber must bring along on the trip. Climbers often climb year round, appreciating the easy summer climb that is minus the ice and snow that they must conquer in the colder months. Rock climbing is related to mountain climbing and uses some of the same equipment. A novice climber will often try climbing large rocks before attempting to climb a huge mountain.
Those looking for adventure who prefer to stay on the ground often prefer mountain biking. It can be a tough and challenging sport, or one that takes place on smooth trails that are family friendly. Many state parks in the U.S. and parks around the globe provide the mountain atmosphere for bikers who use these trails. Some can be quite challenging because they go off-road and onto very steep or narrow areas on mountain sides that only experienced bikers should attempt to do. Biking also requires special equipment, including a mountain bike with thick tires that have good tread, a helmet, special shoes, and comfortable clothing.
Many people enjoy hiking through the woods, and this can be done all year long by anyone who wants to go through the trees and forest, deep into the mountains. In the spring and summer seasons, the beauty of nature can be experienced as flowers and plants bloom in warm areas. The autumn brings a colorful array of falling leaves for a walk in the cool air. There are flat primitive camping areas where it is possible to pitch a small tent in a clearing to enjoy the mountain air.