Fielder Face Off: Mountains


Hannah Darbro, Staff Writer

As summer approaches and summer plans are finalized, many Americans head to the coast to take in some sunshine. Others head for the Smokies, Colorado or even just southern Illinois. The mountains are underrated and much more accessible than you would think. Even though Illinois is the second flattest state in terms of elevation change in the United States, it’s only a nine-hour drive to reach Smoky Mountain National Park.

For those up for an adventure and willing to travel even father, a three-hour plane ride out west can lead you to some of the most famous mountain ranges in the United States.

Trees offer great protection from the sun and you don’t have to worry about the discomfort that comes with pouring sand out of your shoes after a day at the beach. Plus, the feeling of accomplishment that is felt after reaching the top of a mountain and looking out over the surroundings in unmatched compared to anything that could be felt at the beach.

Studies have shown that people who are more introverted prefer the mountains but really, it’s just a great place for people looking for relaxation. That’s not to say that more outgoing people can’t enjoy the scenery. Hiking trips are great to learn more about the environment alongside friends and family.

The mountains are wonderful for younger siblings who enjoy exploring their surroundings and can instill a value for the environment and protecting it at a young age.

Hiking is a great activity for improving cardiovascular health. According to Live Strong, some runners even do attitude training in an attempt to increase their lung capacity and number of red blood cells. Pikes Peak Marathon, a full length ascent and round trip race to the summit of Pikes Peak,  is held each year in Colorado and attracts 2,600 runners.

On the other hand, there’s no shame in skipping your workout and hanging out in a hammock in the woods or admiring the scenery from a bench in the mountains this summer. It’s clear that mountains rock!