Turn those BLAHs into AHHHs
Getting outside is great for your inside
There's nothing quite like the moment you hit your rhythm in snowshoes, or feel the tingling of fresh snowflakes on your face, or hear the sound from children's laughter as they make snow angels. The Great Trail of Canada is your connection to it all – including the feel-good mental health benefits of outdoor activity. So this winter, get out on the Trail, safely and responsibly, and transform those winter #Blahs2Ahhhs.
Virtual panel discussion
On February 1, we kicked off our #Blahs2Ahhhs campaign with a livestream conversation on boosting your mental health this winter. We welcomed four experts:
- Dr. Katy Kamkar, Clinical Psychologist, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)
- Mercedes Nicoll, 4x Canadian Winter Olympian
- Eleanor McMahon, President & CEO, Trans Canada Trail
- Moderated by Valerie Pringle, Vice-Chair of the CAMH Foundation Board and Chair of the Trans Canada Trail Foundation Board
Thank you for joining us, and don’t worry if you missed the livestream – you can still view it here!
Winter photo challenge contest!
Is your social media feed in need of lively winter pics? Take our winter photo challenge! Here’s how to participate:
- Take and post a photo (following our suggested themes) every day for 20 days.
- Tag @TheGreatTrail and @CLIFbar
- Use the hashtag #Blahs2Ahhhs and #FeedYourAdventure
- And you’ll be automatically entered for a chance to win one of 10 CLIF Winter Prize Packs!
Beating the winter blues and blahs
While winter is one of the most beautiful times of year in Canada, the deep freeze can trigger feelings of fatigue, sadness and even loneliness for some people. Hello winter blues, or seasonal depression. Dr. Katy Kamkar, Clinical Psychologist at Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) gives us sure-fire ways for turning those #Blahs2Ahhhs.
Winter fun downloadables
We know it’s cold, but…bundle up and embrace the Canadian winter! We’ve got some fun activities designed to warm you up to the idea of heading outdoors. Keep the kids entertained with a Scavenger Hunt, or keep yourself young at heart by checking off amusing activities from our Winter Fun Checklist. Fun, guaranteed.
Winter safety tips
Snow, wind, cold…oh my! Crisp winter air, freshly fallen snow – there’s nothing like stepping out on the Trail to enjoy the magic of winter. Make the most of your winter adventure by staying safe. Our friends at AdventureSmart focus on educating Canadians and visitors to Canada about safety when recreating outdoors, and they’re reminding us to follow the three T’s this winter: trip planning, training and taking the essentials.
It's not always a walk in the park
Know someone who might be struggling with their mental health? Learn to be there for them by learning the 5 Golden Rules from Jack.org‘s Be There site. Our friends at Jack.org empower thousands of young leaders to revolutionize mental health in every province and territory of Canada. Their highly innovative, award-winning Be There platform is free of charge and provides its users the education they need to be there for others and for themselves. Let’s normalize mental health conversations and create spaces where we can all better support one another – on and off the Trail.
Walking her way to wellness
Who would have thought that 2020 would throw us for such a loop? To help ease pandemic-driven anxiety, new trail user Melissa Waterman tells us about how she kept her mental health in check by exploring The Great Trail, safely and responsibly, in her own backyard.
Support us with an OKME pin
Life has its ups and downs, and sometimes we may notice that things are not quite ok, but it’s ok to not be ok. We can all make a difference by having regular and meaningful conversations about how we’re feeling. Sometimes, all it takes to open the dialogue is a simple “Are you ok?” OKME.ca aims to have conversations around mental health become easier. Spread the word by buying and wearing the OKME pin – from February 1 to March 7,2021 all proceeds will go to Trans Canada Trail.
Before you go
Before going outside, please consult the latest updates from the Government of Canada and World Health Organization, as well as your province/territory, your municipality and the organization that manages your chosen section of the Trail. We may not be made aware of all trail closures. We understand that the situation might be frustrating for Canadians who wish to enjoy some fresh air. However, some local volunteer trail organizations may be facing unforeseen challenges and may determine that it is in the public’s best interest to close their section. Please remember to #RecreateResponsibly.
Getting outdoors has never been more important!
More Canadians than ever are turning to their local sections of the Trail as a way to support their mental and physical health. The availability of safe and healthy outdoor spaces is allowing us to stay connected at a time when we are all being encouraged to stay home. Your support today will help repair damaged sections of Trail and will ensure it remains a safe and enjoyable place for all.