Returning to the tight-knit community

loch raven reservoir. art:

Last month, I sketched out a monthly hiking plan that would send me all around the state, tackling some of the trails that I’ve never been on. This strategy was in line with my bigger project of dropping the weight and leading a more healthy, active lifestyle.

Well, the good news is that I am succeeding on the diet and the exercise. I’ve met with good success over these last four or five weeks, and I am right on schedule.

Scheduled for this Friday, in fact, is my first monthly hike. I decided to head to the Merkle Wildlife Sanctuary in Prince George’s County, MD. I thought this would be a good time to see the migration of birds and walk a path my feet have never touched.

It’s also about 150 miles round trip.

Unfortunately, with the way gas prices continue to rise, I’m beginning to rethink where I take these monthly hikes. I know it’s only once a month, but is this really worth 5 gallons of gas, or an additional $25, to head to this sanctuary? As we’re on a very tight budget right now, I’m thinking that there are some places closer to home that I could take that hike and save the $25.

We’re beginning to think this way about all of the trips we make. Yesterday’s jaunt to Ocean City, MD for Holland’s Gymnastics States Tournament cost me over $50 in gas. If I still had my Jeep, it would have been nearly $100 in fuel costs.

I think I’m going to pocket that $25 and keep it local. There’s plenty around here in a 10-mile radius that I can do that will help me accomplish the same goals. I’m a little bummed that I won’t be seeing as many of the parks throughout the state, at least right now. But keeping it close to my community is not a bad way to go at all.

I’m wondering–Has the rise in gas prices caused you to make similar decisions?


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