Every guy should have at least one hobby, so we’ve decided to write a series on hobbies that are tailor-made for guys. Hobbies can range from watching sports to playing sports, and from collecting things to buying things. Whatever turns you on, hobbies are there to make it even better. Even if you don’t already have one, this series of article might trigger some deep desire within your soul. So keep reading, and get ready to hobby guy style!
Winter Hobbies – Outdoor!
Since most of the planet is currently enduring winter, we thought we would give you a couple of articles on indoor and outdoor hobbies that have a winter appeal. The main reason for this is that winter tends to turn us into house-dwelling hermits, so you need something to do to occupy your time. But there is also lots to do outside the walls of your warm home, and this article will give you some ideas that just might encourage you to venture outside in that brand new ski jacket you bought last year, which has been gathering dust in the closet all summer long.
Lots of guys love to fish, and winter fishing can be a total riot. The best part is that you do not have to go out and buy all new equipment, as you can use your regular fishing gear. But you do need a few things to make it work. First, you need something to break through the ice. Back in the day ‘real men’ used axes, but nowadays there are ice augers – manual and gas powered – that get the job done in just a few minutes. Second, you need protection from the wind. You don’t necessarily need heat, but you do need a wind break. Ice huts can be built or bought, so can very simple nylon windbreaks. The deluxe ice fisherman will have a fully loaded hut, which would include heat, music, bar, etc. Finally, you need somewhere to sit, as ice fishing – like all fishing – requires patience. Check out local lakes and rivers to find out where the ice fishing happens, and then start planning your trip.
If you want a guaranteed female-free hobby, then just take up hunting. There are lots of animals you can hunt and trap in the winter, like caribou, deer, moose, bear, elk, bison, cougar, muskox, or birds. These animals make for a challenging hunt, as you must deal with inclement weather, heavy snow, and fewer animals to hunt. Some of these animals – like deer – are plentiful and can be found almost anywhere. While others require a special trip to a hunting lodge, which just means more fun hanging with the guys, getting drunk, eating what you kill, and long nights of playing poker!
Ice climbing is not for the out of shape weekend warrior, but you can always start small and build up your strength so that you can challenge harder climbs. Essentially, ice climbing involves scaling up a frozen waterfall. If you have never tried this out before, you are in for a real treat. And by treat we mean really sore arms! Using a combination of spiked footwear and axes, you scale up a frozen waterfall. This is a great hobby for you and a few buddies to get involved with. Start out by renting equipment and joining a club, rather than spending a fortune on new gear. Learn the ropes from a pro, then you and the guys can head out once you move out of the amateur category.
Road Hockey is an absolute riot, fantastic exercise, and great way to spend time with your friends. All you need are hockey sticks, 2 nets, and a ball or puck. You play the game like regular hockey, minus the ice and skates. You used to only see kids playing this game, but now it is more and more common for guys to get together on a Saturday afternoon and play for hours. This is a low contact sport, similar to touch football. But you still get to run around and act like an NHL player.
This is a relatively new phenomenon, and not every course will let you play it. Essentially, it is played like regular golf, but you use tennis balls instead of golf balls. But even with tennis balls, it can be a challenge to find your ball. The balls tend to plus into the snow drifts, so playing after a fresh snowfall can be challenging. You can also use snowshoes to get around, as regular boots will sink into the snow. It is a great workout, and you and your friends can decide what to do about putting.
Snow Boarding - City
The problem with any boarding sport is that people get too hung up on location. Downhill skiing aside, you can board and toboggan almost anywhere – riverbank, small hill, snow pile, etc. You also don’t need to spend a fortune on equipment. A pair of boots, whatever winter clothing you own, and a cheap board will work fine for city-boarding. All you need next is to stake out a riverbank, and you can spend the day boarding. The walk back up the bank is great exercise, which will only help strengthen your legs for when you can get to a real ski hill.
You probably did this every chance you could get as a kid, so why stop now that you’re an adult? Other than skates, you do not need any special equipment. Plus, cities usually open up rivers and ponds for ice skating, so there are lots of outdoor places to go. To make it even better, you can take your dates skating and they will think you are a romantic guy!
No matter what you decide to do outdoors, make sure you have warm, layered clothing. It will feel cold as hell at first, but you will acclimatize quickly enough. Soon you will be chopping wood outside for you weekend post-hobby bonfires, and you and your buddies will develop a whole new appreciation for winter. You can always cuddle up to the indoor fireplace and watch movies with your girlfriend another time, and when that time comes – she will appreciate your buff winter body!