Coronavirus opens new opportunities to get outside

Ways to experience the outdoors while Quarantined

It is hard to tell if the Coronavirus has made it easier or harder to get outside every day. On one hand, we need exercise and mental stimuli other than Netflix and schoolwork. On the other hand, going outside and coming into close contact with others puts us at risk. Recently, in the Twin Cities and surrounding areas, we have seen street closures to encourage pedestrians and other outdoor adventurers to social distance.  The Minnesota DNR has also urged citizens to stay close to home. If you live in the Twin Cities you have probably visited the most popular sites for outdoor recreation, i.e. Lake Harriet, Bde Maka Ska, Isles, Nokomis, Minnehaha Creek, and the Mississippi River. While it can be comforting to continue to visit these sites, it is getting harder and harder to social distance, even with lake road closures. Here are a few ideas for adventures you can do close to home, and with minimal human interaction.


  1. Do a tour of little free libraries. If you live in the Twin Cities, chances are you have seen one of these. This is particularly great if you are looking for something unexpected to read or want to give some old books a new home.
  2. Hammock. If the weather is nice, a fun thing to do almost anywhere is go hammocking. 
  3. Go geocaching – yes, the geocaching fad ended about three years ago, but that just means that fewer people will be out doing it (now that’s a low risk, high reward activity)
  4. Hike or hang out at a state park close to where you live. State parks are now only open for day visits.  This means visitors can’t go overnight camping but are still allowed to use the trails and facilities to recreate. Planning a day hike or biking at a state park nearby is a great way to spend a day over the weekend or a long afternoon. Check out the Minnesota Great Outdoors website for a map of  Minnesota recreation areas to find a place near you!
  5. If you really can’t get outside take a virtual tour of a national park or a landmark and walk in place.
  6. Have a picnic. A lot of people have been baking and cooking more than usual. Take the food you make outside and find a nice spot to hang out with family or pets. 


Try to get outside every day and go on some safe adventures! 

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