Whether you go by the meteorologists or the solstices, summer is officially here. Now, this definitely means different things to different people. Perhaps you’re someone that hates this season. Maybe it has wronged you in some way. If that is the case, I am very sorry to hear that. This is not the article for you. As for me, I would absolutely describe myself as an “outdoors person” (right after “nerd”, but that’s not what we’re talking about right now). Yes, I love the outdoors, and I love just about everything that comes with it and therefore I could not be more excited about it finally being summer!

(Outdoor Reasons) Why Summer Is Awesome

1. The Water

Literally every kind of water: creeks, rivers, lakes, springs, oceans, pools. Every year when summer comes around, I make it a personal goal to find my way into each kind at least once during this warm season. This might seem a little strange, but when you consider the activities that will lead you to each it starts to make a little more sense. Hikes, float trips, fishing, soaking, boating, and swimming, respectively. Sorry but, I really don’t think you’re doing right by yourself if these things aren’t gracing your “Things I Did This Summer” list.

Relaxing on the lake in a boat
Nothing quite like spending some relaxing time on the lake.

2. The Camping

Obvious? Maybe. But you won’t find me apologizing for it. My dad was absolutely an outdoors person as well. When I was a kid, any time it was his turn to pick the family “vacation”, camping was always the choice. Sometimes it was in a tent, other times it was in a cabin. But no matter where we were sleeping at night there were two things that every trip had in common: the sense of community we’d be experiencing, and that we’d be packing the Duraflame because there would be bonfires.

Duraflame Roasting Logs
Pickup a pack of Duraflame Roasting Logs before you go camping.

Duraflame Roasting Logs

Okay, yes, the bonfire bit is definitely obvious too. But, again, no apologies here. Just as much as camping is about getting back to nature and enjoying the outdoors, it can be about bonding too. And, as far as atmosphere goes, you’d be hard-pressed to find one better for bonding than around a primal fire.

3. The Ambiance

I admit this might depend a little on where you live, but I’ve always loved how completely the environment changes when summer comes around. I grew up in the Midwest. Around there, this season means everywhere you look is going to be green. Thanks to the humidity and the vegetation, even the air seems green sometimes. And then there’s the sound. During the day all you can hear are cicadas, and at night, the frogs. The smells: flowers and grass, even when it hasn’t been cut. I’m sure I’m leaving tons of stuff out but the point is that when it’s this time of year, everything is amazingly distinct and distinctly beautiful. I can’t get enough of it.

Camping vibes

4. The Barbeques

Back to social time. Of course it’s always fun to go to a party regardless of the time of year, but you just can’t beat a good barbeque. For one thing, it’s outside. If you’re running it potluck-style (which you should be, if you’re doing it right), everyone pitches in and you know you’re going to be eating some awesome food. Again with the smells, I don’t know of many people that don’t enjoy the scent of a charcoal grill—or the things being grilled, for that matter.

Sunday BBQ grilling
Is there anything better than a Sunday BBQ?

They’re also usually larger in the way of guest count. This is totally ideal if you’re someone like me because it gives you the ability to bounce between people watching and socializing without being weird. I think the only negative thing I can think of regarding barbeques is bugs. Fortunately, this can be easily fixed with candles. So… yeah, still a win (unless you don’t like candles, in which case you’re probably a monster). 

5. The Solo Days

I’ve never not been a fan of alone time, but summer has it locked down when it comes to opportunity.

Feeling like being productive? Go hang out in the garden.

Need to do nothing for a while? Go hang out in a hammock.

Feel like a kid again? Build a fort. (No one’s gonna know. You’re alone, remember?)

Need some exercise? Find an arboretum.

In the summertime you have complete freedom to do whatever you can inside any other time of year, PLUS just about anything a person would want to do outside. So, as long as you’re not looking to go snowboarding, you’re set!

This post is sponsored by Duraflame. All opinions are my own.