the japanese have an established custom for the maintenance of physical and mental health, called Shinrin-yoku or forest bathing. our family heartily embraces this custom and we credit ty's easygoing manner and good sleep habits to his daily runs through the woods. kylie and i started this habit when we got a big dog while living in a small townhouse, but now we walk ty like we walk niko, while expecting and realizing the same benefits.
however there is someone in our family who is addicted to forest bathing more than niko or ty for the maintenance of his wellbeing. those of you with an understanding of aristotelian logic and a knowledge of the size of our family and the nonambulatory nature of our youngest will have already deduced that i am speaking of myself.
i need some time in the trees almost every day or i start getting a little twitchy. luckily the area we live in is rife with varigated forest. the biking accessible from chilliwack is world class.
on that note, even a lack of forest can be spectacular. this is from an amazing trail on sumas mtn near abbotsford.
the waterways around our house also offer a pleasant opportunity for aquatic based forest bathing. i kayak a lot on my own, but now that zeke is 3 months old, kylie and i have asked a young girl down the street to babysit for 2 hours a few times so we can paddle together in the afternoon.
another way to get a forest fix, or my ultimate shinrin yoku, an alpine fix, is to take friends out into the mountains.
mike c, mike vk and i recently ascended cheam in the cloistering clouds. it was too bad they couldnt see the view, but the scene was magical.
while bootskiing, mike found out, just as aaron did on lady that niko is not in favour of any member of his pack other than me, either temporary or permanent, bootskiing.
another shinrin yoku activity is beginner spelunking. the rocks have their own energy.
last week we ventured to the chipmunk caves with mike and hailey and kids. everyone passed through at least one cave, and finn did an impromptu slide. ty absolutely loved being inside a cave. every time i looked at him his eyes were wide and shining. of course that could have been b/c of the headlamp i pointed at him with every glance.
this morning mike vk and i rose early and ambled up needle peak on the coquihalla. the scenes were magical from start to finish.
rising out of deep fog to sunlit rock ridges and then clambering up from there to a seat high above the clouds.
mike mentioned that as we neared the summit and the terrain become more technical, my pace increased, my steps had more spring and my upward progress was more dynamic. this culminated in some rock jumping at the top of the world.
rocks have their own energy. i actually hugged a tree on the way down. forest bathing. alpine bathing. granite bathing. shinrin yoku works for me.