Why Did I Create Outdoor Detour


Let's take a quick minute to admire the picture above. I used it because it's from my very first hike in Colorado six weeks after I moved here. I mean, I'm wearing friggen jeans, clogs, and a heavy cotton tee shirt. The only things I had right were the fleece and backpack. It's comical to look back at it now. This bright-eyed kid fresh out of college that finally made the move out west. I didn't know where to start, except that I wanted to be in the mountains and start living the Colorado lifestyle.

But anyhow, thank you so much for stopping by and checking out the site. It's not much of anything yet, and it will take time before it evolves into what I want it to be. But you've managed to find yourself here either by chance or because you have the slightest interest in what I'm up to, and for that, I can't thank you enough.

So what is this? Why does Outdoor Detour need to exist? What should you expect?

Let me start with some quick background...

I've been skiing all my life and that's pretty much what brought me out to Colorado. When I moved here, I quickly found that the opportunities to get outside and stay active were endless.

Then I tore my ACL, MCL, meniscus, and rotator cuff in a freak ski fall and all of a sudden my options were limited.

I consider myself lucky I made it to 29 before having a ski injury.

I consider myself lucky I made it to 29 before having a ski injury.

Post-surgery x-ray of my new hardware.

Post-surgery x-ray of my new hardware.

I had feared this moment for many years. I couldn't imagine a winter in Colorado without skiing. It seemed inevitable though--I ski hard and I ski fast, like, as fast as possible. But I remained confident as I stayed in shape and limited my recklessness and the risks I took. I dreaded missing summer because of volleyball and softball, and I dreaded missing winter because skiing was everything. Now I was forced to miss out on both as I rehabbed. No softball, no volleyball, no skiing, and worst of all, no hiking.

So I camped.

And I camped some more. Before I knew it, I had camped at least one night for 15 weeks straight--basically the entire summer. Many trips were by myself, and it was exactly the kind of relief and reflection I needed during that time when I was struggling to keep my mind active when my body couldn't be.

Just outside of Zion National Park.

Just outside of Zion National Park.

That stretch of camping really got me exploring again. Every week I was plotting out potential camping spots on a Colorado map in new areas I had never been. It was a part of me that I felt like I had lost a bit when I went to college. I got caught up in the big city lifestyle and didn't have a car that would allow me to go out and explore the surrounding areas. I worked my butt off when I was in school and I rarely left the city during my years there.

Now I understand exactly what John Muir was talking about.
The mountains were calling, and I felt I must go.

So now I'm in Colorado, I've amassed all the outdoor gear I could possibly need, and I'm in full-on adventure mode. And look, I've traveled a lot since college as a single guy with no pets or obligations keeping me in one place. I always thought I should have somewhere to document my travel. I'm just a little late to the game and eager to use this site as an outlet to catch up!

Outdoor Detour will be a place where I can document and share my travels and experiences and provide some insight that will hopefully allow you to get out there and do some exploring of your own and create your own adventures.

You can expect adventure reports, gear reviews, beginner guides, travel/adventure recommendations, and a lot of pictures documenting everything along the way. I know that sounds pretty standard for an outdoor blog, and, frankly, it absolutely is. But this is all new territory for me, and I don't know what this site is or what it might become, but I do know that this is a good way for me to hit the ground running.

Thanks again for stopping by. I'm going to make it my job to get outside and continue exploring in hopes that it will make it a little easier for you to get out there and do the same. 

Much appreciated,
-Randy Johnson