You Need These for a Picnic in the Mountains

I just learned that it’s National Picnic Day! That means we need to get outside! While I’m not specifically in a position to head out and picnic today, I do enjoy partaking in outdoor meals quite often. Mind you, I don’t mean that I eat out on the deck. I mean that I pack a lunch, aka. picnic, and eat in the mountains all the time. Today I’ll share a few items that make the event enjoyable.

I’ll start by saying that I generally allow my trusty steed, Cowboy, to carry my snacks in his saddlebags. Because of this, I might carry more than I would in my ALPS Outdoorz Huntress backpack. Yep. When someone else is carrying your gear, you tend to pack more. However, I must mention that he never complains because I always make room for a Peanut Butter granola bar to share with him.

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Regardless of who happens to be carrying your gear, a picnic in the mountains is always at the heart of any favorite meal. Let me tell you about the set up for one of my favorites, and I hope you’ll tell me some of your faves in the comments below.

Peanut butter and jelly is a staple for a mid-day snack. Other items I love to have at 12,000′ include Chicken N’ Biscuit crackers with smoked oysters. Boy! Is that some good living when you’re way up there in the sky. H likes to carry a small bottle of yellow mustard, a hunk of cheese, and bear salami. This too we have enjoyed in the skies above the rest of the world.

When you have thin, clean air, a cool breeze, after a long hike, these flavorful snacks seem like heaven.

 

The picnics happen more often when you happen to be out on a multi-day excursion. I love to pack mini-tortillas and a Mountain House’s Chicken Fajita pouch. Mmmhmm! That stuff is divine. To make cooking easier, always pack a JetBoil or similar cooking device. Neither takes up much weight or room in your backpack, but boy are they pick-me-ups when you’re in the mountains.

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Speaking of another thing that makes a picnic with a view even better, have you ever tried the Mountain House desserts? Again — YUM! I like the cheesecake bites and have had some youngsters on trips that enjoyed the ice cream, but the very best (which is saved for success day) is the Raspberry Crumble.

There you have it. From pb&j and granola bars — to goodness on crackers — to divine dehydrated meals that will last in your pack, you too can enjoy a picnic in the mountains.

— OH WAIT! I didn’t tell you about drinks! Hydration is key, so you must remember to drink lots of fluids. Water filtration is important. You can use that JetBoil to boil water or you can carry filtration bottles or LifeStraws.

I use filtration bottles because you never know when you won’t find a stream in which to dip that straw. When it comes to calculating weight, one bottle full is definitely doable. If you happen to be out for just a day, a Hydro flask will work. If you don’t like the flavor of plain water, add some Hydrate and Recover or a drop of Mio to enhance the flavor and give your body much-needed nourishment.

It’s beautiful in our neck of the woods, but I know in many parts of the country, winter is still looming. I hope you get to get outdoors for a picnic soon. What are some or your picnic favorites?

*I am not sponsored by any of the companies or products I’ve mentioned today. I simply wanted to give you a peek into some of the things that make me smile when I picnic on a hunt or pack trip in the high country. — Enjoy!


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Live on the 2A Guardian with Gabby Franco

I stayed up past my bedtime last night to do a LIVE interview on the 2A Guardian show with my good friend, Gabby Franco. I give you five hunting tips, plus tell you how to take care of your game before and after the shot, so you have the best tasting meals on your table. In case you missed our live chat, I’ve embedded the replay below.

To learn more about her, follow Gabby on her Facebook page and remember to follow me on mine too.


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The Meaning of #blessed

Morning coffee pondering – #Blessed

I hope you all had a blessed celebration day. It’s the day after Christmas, and as I scroll through the FB I see two types of people. Ones who think blessings are about gifts and ones who think they’re about Christ, family, and experiences.

The examples can be seen by comparing two pictures in the morning feed. One is of a momma who adopted two children. She shares a picture of them with HUGE smiles, sitting atop their horses, going for a Christmas ride. The other is of two young girls with meek faces and a HUGE pile of gifts behind them.

One photo caption says, “No one was ever THIS nice” with a hashtag #blessed and a comment below, from the mother, “We love our children so much.”

The other photo caption, “Do not educate your child to be rich. Educate them to be happy.”

Tell me, which children do you think are truly blessed? While I think presents are a blessing of which we should be thankful for, is a child who doesn’t receive a mountain of packages less blessed than one who does?

I hope you all received blessings this Christmas. I believe we all received the greatest one with the birth of Christ. I also believe God gave us this great world to behold and take care of and to delight in. Get outside. Take a family member, friend, or go it alone. Solo time in the outdoors is good for the soul.

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Get Outside for National Hunting and Fishing Day

It’s National Hunting and Fishing Day. Will you be headed outside? Who will you be with, and what will you be up to? Today is all about the connection to the outdoors, traditions, education, conservation, and sharing it with others. What more could you ask for?

For this great day, I wanted to share a fun two-day hunt with you. My husband and I were invited to hunt antelope on a private ranch in Eastern Colorado. Since we live six hours away, there’s never enough time to scout. Watch the video below as the landowner’s son shows us the property boundaries, where the antelope traditionally travel and gives us a general low-down on what our hunt will be.

This young man is learning about wildlife and gaining a connection to the outdoors. Many youngsters never get this opportunity, and some don’t even notice the wild things around them. Today, as you head out, look around. Notice the squirrels, chipmunks, and birds you pass along the way. You say you don’t want to hunt or fish? How about looking at the plants. Did you notice the flowers growing along the sidewalk as you head into the coffee shop? Tell me what you see that you’ve never noticed before.

This is an archery hunt. That means it’s all about getting up close and personal. We bought a Montana Big Red Moo Cow Decoy we purchased long ago and you’ll see why it came in handy. What decoys do you use during your hunts? Getting close to animals is a challenge, in some cases a thrill, and definitely part of why I enjoy the hunt. Regardless of whether an animal is taken or not, the journey is always the best part.

Tell me, what is your favorite part of the hunt?

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Women’s Hunting and Fishing Class – Kremmling, Colorado

Dear Colorado Friends,
If you’re in the proximity of Kremmling, these classes CPW presents are a great way to get started hunting or fishing. There will be other opportunities throughout the state. I’ll share them as I see the announcements. GET OUTSIDE, hunt, fish, shoot, and savor everything our great state has to offer. ~Mia

Women-only hunting and fishing class offered in Kremmling, register now

CPW_SiteLogoKREMMLING, Colo. – Women interested in learning the basics of fly fishing and how to handle and shoot a shotgun safely are invited to a women­-only “Cast ‘n’ Blast” clinic in Kremmling, Saturday, June 10, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Designed for novices 18 and older, no experience or equipment is required. Participants should dress for the elements and bring all necessary supplies, including water, insect repellent and sunscreen. Lunch, snacks and drinks will be provided.

The class fee is $20 and pre-­registration is required. Call Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s Hot Sulphur Springs office at 970­-725­-6200 to register. Space is limited and the seminar is expected to fill quickly.

Participants are reminded that the class is not a Hunter Education course, which is required to purchase a hunting license. To find a Hunter Education course, go to www.cpw.state.co.us/learn/Pages/HunterEducation.aspx, or call your local Colorado Parks and Wildlife office.

 

CLICK TO SHOP

“Cast ‘n’ Blast” is offered through Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s Hunter Outreach Program. The program includes workshops, clinics, seminars and educational hunts that focus on teaching the skills, ethics and traditions of hunting to novice youth and women.

 

What: Women­ only “Cast ‘n’ Blast’’

When: Saturday, June 10, ­8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Where: Kremmling, Colo.

Contact: Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s Hot Sulphur Springs office at 970-­725­-6200.

For more information about novice and youth education and seminars, please visit www.cpw.state.co.us/learn/Pages/HunterOutreach.aspx

To purchase hunting or fishing licenses online, please visit www.cpw.state.co.us/thingstodo/Pages/hunt.aspx

 

CLICK TO SHOP

CPW is an enterprise agency, relying primarily on license sales, state parks fees and registration fees to support its operations, including: 41 state parks and more than 350 wildlife areas covering approximately 900,000 acres, management of fishing and hunting, wildlife watching, camping, motorized and non-motorized trails, boating and outdoor education. CPW’s work contributes approximately $6 billion in total economic impact annually throughout Colorado.

 


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Celebrate Black Friday with Colorado Parks and Wildlife #FreshAirFriday

Do you have a family tradition centered around Thanksgiving? Of course, most Americans gorge themselves on turkey, casseroles, and desserts, but what else do you do? My family usually enjoys a “Turkey Shoot” which is more an Annie Oakley style shotgun shoot. It’s nothing serious, just a means to get everyone off the couch and into the fresh air. Colorado Parks and Wildlife has a similar idea with its #FreshAirFriday campaign. Tell me, in the comments below or on my social sites, do you get outside for Thanksgiving? What’s your tradition? ~Mia


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Colorado state parks are free on Black Friday for
Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s #FreshAirFriday

CPW_SiteLogoEntry to all 42 Colorado state parks is free on Nov. 25 for a new Colorado Parks and Wildlife tradition called #FreshAirFriday. Colorado Parks and Wildlife offers this opportunity to those who have signed the pledge to head outside on the day after Thanksgiving. More than 50 retailers in Colorado and nationwide are closing their doors on Black Friday and multiple states are urging people to go outside instead of joining the rush inside to shop this year.

“It is a long-time Colorado tradition to get outside,” said CPW Director Bob Broscheid. “This Black Friday we invite you to start a new family tradition of enjoying the Colorado state parks together for free if you aren’t shopping.”

Great Outdoors Colorado is covering all costs for access to the state parks on Friday.

“On behalf of the GOCO board, I’m pleased to announce GOCO will fund CPW’s #FreshAirFriday for a second year. We happily join our partners at CPW, and many other forward-thinking organizations, in this movement to change how we all spend our time on Black Friday,” said Jason Brinkley, chairman of the GOCO board of trustees. “We hope droves of Colorado kids and their families take advantage of this opportunity to make visiting our incredible state parks part of their holiday traditions. We’ll see you out there!”

CPW offers family-friendly activities, fun-filled adventures and opportunities to learn and try new things at state parks. Check out the Park Finder map or the events calendar on the CPW website. Plus, ideas for ice fishing, skiing and snowshoeing, sledding and skating, snowmobiling, hiking, lodging and wildlife viewing can all be found on CPW’s winter activities page. Please note that activity fees may apply.

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CPW is an enterprise agency, relying primarily on license sales, state parks fees and registration fees to support its operations, including: 42 state parks and more than 350 wildlife areas covering approximately 900,000 acres, management of fishing and hunting, wildlife watching, camping, motorized and non-motorized trails, boating and outdoor education. CPW’s work contributes approximately $6 billion in total economic impact annually throughout Colorado.

FIND A PICNIC

Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) invests a portion of Colorado Lottery proceeds to help preserve and enhance the state’s parks, trails, wildlife, rivers, and open spaces. GOCO’s independent board awards competitive grants to local governments and land trusts, and makes investments through Colorado Parks and Wildlife. Created when voters approved a Constitutional Amendment in 1992, GOCO has since funded more than 4,800 projects in urban and rural areas in all 64 counties without any tax dollar support. Visit GOCO.org for more information.


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