Exploring North Carolina- From Peaks to Swamps and Everything in Between

There is something so beautiful in the simplicity of walking. The action itself can be meditative, calming, and cleansing. So when you add boots, nature, and sometimes snacks into the mix it turns into something magical. I absolutely love hiking- its my favorite way to escape the busyness of everyday life and leave obligations behind for a few hours or a few days.

Hiking for me isn’t a workout- I am the type of hiker who loves to meander, stray from the path, and take (more than) a few moments to admire nature’s beauty. Sometimes this is referred to as ‘forest bathing’ or shinrin-yoku, simply immersing yourself in nature and thoroughly enjoying it! In Japanese, “shinrin” means forest and “yoku” means bath – soaking in the atmosphere through the senses. However, just because I look at hiking as a pleasurable pastime instead of a workout with a destination doesn’t mean that I shouldn’t be prepared!

Especially coming off a broken ankle, I need to make sure that the gear (like a lightweight, but durable backpack) I wear and bring with me is suitable for where I’m headed to. I’ve been traveling quite a bit this summer, so I need gear that’s versatile in two ways: first, that it can handle a few types of terrain, and second in that its attractive enough to be able to transition from the forest to a casual restaurant for dinner!

I recently had the opportunity to travel to North Carolina and visit the Great Smokey Mountain National Park as well as Merchants Millpond State Park accompanied by a great outdoor photographer, Nick. We both had the opportunity to test out some of Adidas’ Terrex Line- and to say that I was impressed was an understatement! I’m not one who loves hiking boots- often they’re clunky and restrictive. Hiking sneakers on the other hand? Big fan. I LOVED the mobility that Terrex line brought to the table. In both the footwear and the clothing I felt both comfortable and supported! Because I’m not one to do things in half-measures I knew that I couldn’t just explore one terrain for Terrex- the Great Smokey National Park was ruggedly beautiful, with rocky trails and steep forests while Merchants Millpond was a swamp in all its glory! Moisture levels, elevation changes, and post-hike explorations were all different on the different sides of North Carolina, but Adidas has my back (and my feet!) Through it all!

So whether you’re headed out into the park in your city, going swimming in your clothes (not recommended, but HIGHLY enjoyable especially in a tank ) or headed out to lunch after a strenuous hike, choose gear that supports your lifestyle- whatever type of wild that might be!

Get spontaneous, go forest bathe, and most all of have fun exploring what nature, wherever you are, has for you! I am an Adidas Ambassador, all opinions are my own.

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