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Outdoor adventure goals, plans, and dreams for 2021.

Happy New Year everyone!

While it is a bit cliché at the new year to talk about our 'resolutions' (who else is losing weight and getting in shape this year?!), I do believe that it is helpful to share your goals with a community in order to help bring them to life. The support you find when sharing your goals can sometimes be the difference between achieving them and pushing them to the back burner (again) for the next year.

It is in that spirit of support and camaraderie that I ask: What are your plans, goals, and dreams for outdoor adventure in 2021? Big or small, from expert level to complete beginner, let's hear about what you hope to accomplish so we can inspire and support each other to get outside more in 2021!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.
48 Replies

Bear Down! Rambler here. Great climbing club at the U, too.


Awsome! Nothing more to say. 


Can I just say "stop" you are scaring me - haha.  These are awesome pictures.


I love this question! Looking forward to hearing what other people have their eyes set on.

I'm not a straight-forward resolutions person myself, but do always have a few general ideas that I'm excited about. 

  • Skiing: The more dawn patrols, the better! Bolton Valley is thirty minutes from my front door and I'm trying to make use of it every chance I get (bonus points if coffee is a requirement)
  • Biking: Once snow is gone, I'm hoping to do some longer day trips on the impressive gravel around Vermont, using sections of the Green Mountain Gravel Growler loop as an inspiration and guide
  • Climbing: Aim to get scared on sends up at Marshfield Ledge - getting scared will be a given, but the sends I'll have to try hard for!

@seekristentravel@ayhunt@POCOPAM@CarissaCournoyer@bryndsharp - you all have mentioned some exciting moves, ideas, and plans recently! Any outdoor goals or hopes for 2021 you want to share?

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Great post, @REI-JohnJ - it also helps with accountability, too, when we publicly declare our goals (I, of course, have no illusions that any of us here will actually remember each others goals several months from now  LOLOLOL).

But, in that spirit, I do have a few goals:

  • Two backpacking trips:
    • Loyalsock Trail in PA
    • Garden of the Gods in Southern Illinois
  • Either sections of the Colorado Trail or the Grand Canyon rim-to-rim trail. I separated these out because as much as I really want to do one of them, it won't bother me if I can't fit one in this year.
  • Buy a kayak and, it should go without saying, actually go kayaking! My wife isn't really on board with this yet but... she is on board with buying a 3-D printer. You see where I am going with this, right? 🤣
  • Walk/hike/backpack a minimum of 250 miles in 2021 (intentional exercise, not counting just everyday activity and movement).
  • Complete my first 20 mile day hike in more than 30 years!
“Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.” (John Muir)

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one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.

Something a little different from the geezer class....

Now that I am well into my eighties, my goals are rather modest, centering around archaeological and paleontological field work on the Channel Islands.  The current goal involves a bit of history as well....

in early December, 1941, to western Santa Rosa island to dig up pygmy mammoth fossils.  The were so engaged on December 7, a date that was also one of the lads birthday, when they weere instructed to get ready to leave, Pearl Harbor having been attacked.  They quickly plastered their specimens and departed.  The plan was for someone to retrieve the specimens at a later date.  Apparently other events had priority - shocking!!

On our ast visit to the isand, one of our party stumbled across a bone, clearly encased in plaster, eroding from a seaside cliff.  This is very likely the 1941 specimen, since there is other instance known of leaving a plastered specimen on the island.

Plans are afoot to retrieve the bones, complicated by covid naturally, but we get to do it later in the year.  Rather remarkably, one of the excavators is still alive, some 95 years old, and I hope we can get this done soon...

One of my specialties was retrieving specimens from cliffside locations on rappel, about the only aspect of technical climbing I can still pursue, and my ambition is to pass on the ability to new workers, at least one of whom has expressed interest.  My current helmet, harness and rope are all REI purchases.  If only REI carried rappel racks, it would be an all REI setup.  I was almost five years when Pearl Harbor occurred, so this will close the circle.

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.


Such a great story! Thanks for sharing!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

@REI-JohnJHappy New Year! back at you!

agree, good topic, definitely time to start planning warmer weather trips.

So far...I'm definitely planning to go backpacking in the Bridger Wilderness for at least 10 days, probably first part of July. Maybe try to schedule it around their Rendezvous Days and Rodeo, which I keep forgetting to do.

High on the wish list is to restart the JMT in August, the section from Kearsarge Pass (Independence, CA) to Yosemite, before I 'age out'.  Permits for August become available at the end of Jan, so I'll get them, then have many months to figure it out.  Biggest factor, besides acclimatization, is smoke from wildfires, I won't go if there is smoke, I'm in that age category that is really affected by smoke. Twice I've been choked off the trail.  Also a change in plans, will be to buy a 1 way ticket to Reno, so I can relax and only have to worry about food resupply and not meeting a flight deadline.

Maybe get out to the Grand Canyon in the spring, maybe Utah.

If Canada reopens this summer that could cause a major shift in plans.  Getting permits for back-country campsites would be the biggest challenge.

I've had the wonderland trail on my radar for a few years, when are you thinking of going?

I highly recommend Iceland's Laugavegur(hot spring) trail, about 35miles or so, can be done quit easily in 10K days, stopping a manned huts each night.  Can stay at huts or just backpack.  I was pleasantly surprised how easy the logistics were, once we got it figured out.


REI Member Since 1979


I'm thinking about the Wonderland Trail in a couple of ways as it really is going to depend on getting permits. I have a healthy amount of time off in August for my 15 year REI sabbatical (woot woot!) and I could use that for it, knowing that it will be during the most popular time to do that trail and potentially miss out due to wildfires. I could also carve out some time mid-to-late September and see if it is easier to secure a permit and bank on the fact that it is when fires tend to lessen. A third option would be to attempt to section hike it throughout the summer. All of these are going to be permit, wildfire, and covid-restriction dependent so while it's good to have options, it's also hard to lock down plans at this point.

One other trip I've been weighing is a backpack through the Enchantments, which may be the back up trip or the primary trip based on all those same factors mentioned above.

Any interest in coming along? I can keep you posted on how the permit applications go!


At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Thanks for posting this. The more we see people talking about resolutions...the more we think about and want to create one or hold ourselves accountable to doing em'!

-I want to get back into mountain biking this year. I used to mountain bike a lot when I was in the Midwest, I even did a few races! 

-Running: I started trail running last year March...just for health reasons but it has become much more than just that! This past Saturday I ran 10 miles for the first time! I've got my eye on a half marathon trail run next month!

-More backpacking trips/camping trips than I did last year! 

Good luck everyone!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.