THE GREAT OUTDOORS — This weekly column highlights user-submitted photos and video of Utahns exploring our beautiful state. Watch for it each Thursday morning to get ideas for your next outdoors adventure.
Despite the cold, Utahns across the state are still gravitating to the outdoors and are enjoying a variety of recreational activities —including some that may seem surprising for the current weather conditions.
Videos and pictures of residents getting outdoors to go paragliding and paddleboarding are among those featured in this week's user-submitted gallery. If you are like me and would never have even considered that paddleboarding in this weather would be a popular pastime, think again. Wasatch SUP Club, a Utah-based stand-up paddle boarding club, enjoys the sport year-round and regularly goes on the Great Salt Lake during the winter months because most of the other lakes in Northern Utah freeze over.
"Contrary to most beliefs, this activity is quite warm," Wasatch SUP member Christopher Knoles said. "Everyone dresses in layers, similar to someone enjoying snowshoeing or winter running. Midway through the activity most people have stripped down to their base layer of shorts and tank tops. As we post photos on social media, we're often given the obvious advice, 'Don't fall in!' We never do."
Others continue to paraglide during the winter when the weather permits. And of course, there were submissions of more traditional winter recreational activities like skiing and ice skating.
Hopefully, the photos and videos will give you some inspiration to try a new winter sport. Get out there and enjoy Utah's gorgeous outdoors.