There is nothing quite like traveling. It’s definitely not the most affordable hobby, as reflected by my credit card balance, but the inexplicable feelings of wonder and amazement that accompany a good adventure are literally priceless.
We talked a little bit about the trend of folks favoring experiences over material possessions in our vanlife piece. What better way for us to encourage people to take a trip than to highlight some of the amazing places we’ve been? We’re no travel agency, just ordinary people like you, looking for extraordinary experiences.
We found what we were looking for in British Columbia. A few of us had the immense pleasure of traveling to B.C. this past summer. We traveled from Calgary, through Banff National Park, to the Salmo River. From there we headed up to Golden, before trekking back to Calgary.
The drive through Banff was surreal. After an hour or so of driving the flat landscape suddenly transforms into a world of unparalleled mountainous beauty. Along the drive we spotted two black bears and a big-horn sheep, along with several wildlife corridors.
Perhaps the most breathtaking thing about Banff is the color of the water. This is due to a substance called “rock flour”. As glaciers slowly move over rocks, the grinding creates a light silty material. In the spring, the melt water from the glaciers carries the silt, or rock flour, into the streams, rivers and lakes. Because the rock flour is so light, it remains suspended in the water, allowing the sunlight to reflect off of it. This creates an almost electric bluish green color that straight up looks like it’s from another planet.
We could literally talk for hours about our trip and still not be able to adequately convey our experience. What we can tell you though, is how we felt when we returned. It was as if our travels had almost rewired our brains. We experienced an increase in productivity, creativity, motivation, and overall well being. I personally still draw on my experiences in B.C almost daily when I need a morale boost.
It’s been proven that traveling is good for your health. People who get out of their comfort zone and experience new things as they age are far less likely to show signs of cognitive decay. Traveling can also lower your risk of heart disease, reduce blood pressure, and improve creativity.
It’s not easy to travel. It’s not cheap, convenient, or accesible to everyone. Technology has made it a bit easier on your wallet, though. Websites like couchsurfing, hospitality club, and global freeloaders can hook you up with free or cheap places to stay around the world. If camping is your thing, hipcamp is a great way to find private camping sites around the country. With a little bit of creativity and hard work, everyone can have the opportunity to travel somewhere. And we really hope you do.