Around cam's campfire valentines sig

I have to admit that we are getting into the worst part of the year. It’s cold and rainy and Spring Break is just far enough away that it can’t serve as a beacon of hope quite yet.

On top of that, Valentine’s Day is upon us.

You can fall into one of two categories this Valentine’s Day: someone who has a Valentine, or someone who doesn’t. If you happen to be alone this Valentine’s Day, don’t worry. You can always find company in nature.

If you have a particularly good singing voice, I would recommend going to your favorite park and singing out loud. With some luck it will attract all sorts of woodland creatures to keep you company. If you have exceptional skill, a bird may even land on your fingertip. Savor the moment and pretend it is human contact.

If you are more content with your singleness and don’t need critters for comfort, maybe have a Galentine or Palentine Day hike. Nothing lifts the spirits like hiking in mid-February in Kentucky. Cold rain, biting wind, and boot-swallowing mud can’t dampen camaraderie and shared jovial spirit. I would recommend stopping for a picnic and playing a fun game called “see who can open the wrapper on a granola bar the fastest with fingers stiff and numb from the cold.”

If you happen to have a special someone in your life, you too can spend your day enjoying the outdoors. Give rock climbing a try. Nothing builds trust better than holding your significant other’s life in your hands as you control the rope and attempt to stop a fall. It is also common knowledge that everyone is the best version of themselves when they are a hundred feet in the air with nothing but air beneath your heels. Every stress is carried away by the wind, leaving you able to enjoy your time with your bae to the fullest.

If heights aren’t your thing, there are still plenty of ways to get outside with your significant other. For the most extreme couples out there, I would recommend a camping trip over the weekend. Find a nice secluded hideaway in the woods.

Build a fire and sip some cocoa as darkness descends and the stars appear. Listen to the howls of wolves in the distance. Then, launch into a deep conversation with your partner, one that totally ensnares your attention and takes your mind off the fact that the howls are now coming from just behind the shadows of the trees...

Around Cam's Campfire is a bi-weekly column by Natural Resources student and Urban Forest Initiative intern, Cameron Luker. Read last week's column here.