Ways to Enjoy the Outdoors at Night.

With the recent time change, paired with the short days of Fall, spending time outside gets a little more difficult.  For most of us, outdoor time is after we finish our 9 to 5.  Just because the days are shorter, does not mean that you cannot still enjoy spending time outside.  Here are a few tips to keep you enjoying nature long after the sun goes down.

Be Seen.

Running or cycling on the road at night is definitely not preferred, but with the proper gear you can still get a great workout in after dark.  If you are running, remember to run against traffic, and wear as much reflective clothing as you can.  Also it is best to have some sort of blinking light attached to you, and I have seen some folks even wearing a high power headlamp.  

With cycling, under state law you need a headlight and taillight on your bicycle.  With all lights, it is a good idea to be sure your batteries are charged and ready to go before any ride.  Nothing is worse than going for a night bicycle ride to lose your lights halfway through your ride!

Know Your Surroundings.

Enjoying the outdoors at night is not the time to start exploring new areas.  Not that exploring new areas is bad in any sense, but that your familiar trails will seem brand new with the lack of light.  If you have a proper high output cycling light, take a night ride on your favorite mountain bike trail.  Your favorite trail will seem brand new!

Some Favorite Gear.

Magicshine MJ-808E bicycle light.

For the last four years, I have been using this light on all of my night riding trips.  Perfect for bike path rambles, and also works well for night single track adventures.  I have been told by other cyclists that they thought I was a motorcycle on the bike path, it's that bright!  Usually you can find them for under $100.  Check out their site here.

CamelBak FlashFlo

Primarily a running pack, this highly reflective pack is perfect for longer runs in the dark where you might need to carry a little bit more than just a water bottle.  Carries around 50oz. of water, and has a capacity of 200 sq. in. for extra gear.  For night adventures, it is perfect with it's reflective surface, and also a loop to attach a light.

Lightweights Stealth Tape.

Reflective tape is extremely handy for items that are non reflective.  High Visibility Yellow is not for everyone.  This tape comes in the ever so fashionable black, but when light hits it, it turns highly reflective!  Such a great idea, and can be put anywhere!  Retails for around $15 for 100 inches.  Check out their site here.

Hopefully this gives you a few ways to stay active this time of year.  Just because the sun goes down early, doesn't mean that your outdoor time is over!  Just remember to be seen, and be safe!

Get Outside Cincinnati!