A Longhorn’s Guide to Getting Outside

UT Recreational Sports
3 min readApr 29, 2020

by Dixon Hankins, Associate Director for Outdoor Recreation

Have you been outside today? Finding adventure can seem challenging, but there are still many ways to experience the benefits of the outdoors and appreciate our natural world no matter where you are. The UT RecSports Outdoor Recreation program wants to make sure spending time outdoors is part of your daily routine. Here are some of our recommendations for getting outside during this time.

Manuel — Adventure Trip Guide

Go Outside

Keep it simple, safe, and local. The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics has specific recommendations for how to get outdoors and where to go. For inspiration, take a look at how the Outdoor Program staff are getting their nature fix.

Dana — Outdoor Recreation Program Assistant and Adventure Trip Guide | Daniel — Outdoor Recreation Program Assistant, Adventure Trip Guide and Climbing Wall Supervisor
Robert — Adventure Trip Guide and Outdoor Center Equipment Manager | Dixon — Associate Director for Outdoor Recreation with his son Joaquin — outdoor enthusiast :) | Abbey — Adventure Trip Guide and Outdoor Center Equipment Manager
Kristin — Climbing Wall Supervisor | Connor (and his dog Rosemary) — Outdoor Recreation Program Assistant, Adventure Trip Guide and Climbing Wall Supervisor

Leave No Trace

Wherever you go, follow these 7 principles and do your part to help our natural environment remain healthy during this time.

Photos courtesy of Robert, Adventure Trip Guide and Outdoor Equipment Manager

Be Present

Try to keep technology silenced and out of sight while spending time outside. Then, practice mindfulness to notice what you see, hear, smell, and feel while you focus on being outdoors without distractions.

Be Consistent

Bring balance to your life by getting outside every day for at least 20 minutes. Spending time in nature and disconnecting from our increasingly connected world has numerous benefits including improved mood, reduced stress, increased concentration, and a boost to your overall physical health and well-being.

Find Something New

Check out this resource list of outdoor film, literature, and podcast recommendations from the Outdoor staff. You’ll find inspiration from epic adventures, moving stories, and ways to expand your knowledge from home!

Reflect

Think about your past adventures and the impact of those experiences. What plans do you have for future exploration?

We hope you continue to find ways to enjoy and appreciate the outdoors safely from home. Be well and happy trails.

A Note About The Author

Dixon Hankins is the Associate Director for the Outdoor Recreation program at RecSports, where he oversees experiential learning opportunities through outdoor recreation inclusive of wilderness medicine education, 2,600+ square feet of climbing space inside Gregory Gym, adventure trips, and the Outdoor Center.

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UT Recreational Sports

Education through recreation. Est. 1916. | The University of Texas at Austin