THANK YOU for visiting my website.
I know it can be hard to show up for my outdoor adventure outings and not know a head of time what you are getting into.
Hopefully you will be happy with what you find. I think you will!
There are new people who join us all the time, not knowing anyone beforehand.
Many of these people have become best friends for life!
I am always so impressed with the determination and bravery it takes to join an unknown outdoor adventure group and then commit to coming back again and again.
Thank you for being open minded enough to try a new sport and be willing to meet new people.
Like everyone who joins us, we all have a desire to reduce stress, live a more active healthy lifestyle, play outdoors and have a fun adventure in the process.
As a member of our hiking group, you will get better acquainted with our incredible outdoor playground: the Wasatch Mountains! You may join us for one free outing to see if our group is right for you. After that, you may go to my website, liveandthrive.com, and register online to become a member of our Outdoor Adventure Club ($35/annual membership fee/person). Feel free to pay online by credit card OR in person with cash or check. If you are unable to pay due to unemployment or financial distress, talk to me in person.
As much as we love hiking, our Live and Thrive Outdoor Adventure Club is so much more than that. In addition to 200+ hikes per year, you are invited to join us for 200 more outings, events, classes, and trips offered every year.
Occasionally we even feed our hikers! On Saturday mornings, you may enjoy a delicious, complimentary bagel provided by a local business.
I love showing our members new outdoor recreational products introduced to the market, some of which you may be invited to sample or test.
As a member, join us on a variety of outings including hiking, camping trips, Utah weekend adventure vacations, land paddling, Zipfy Riding, bike riding, freeline skating, flat water kayaking, stand up paddle surfing, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, international adventure travel, hooping, downhill skiing, Dutch oven cooking, etc.
There are even more perks...
I won't ever really promote this publicly but when enough people get together, things happen and I've seen at least 10 marriages and countless numbers of companionships formed in our group over the years. Hopefully this service alone is worth $35/year!
I am confident you will be impressed with all we have to offer and the high caliber of adults we attract.
New people are streaming in all the time from many different sources.
If you have children or dogs who want to attend, talk to me in advance so I can help you have a great experience.
Who should join our hiking group?
Anyone with a desire to be active who has a positive, adventurous, friendly, kind, caring, teachable attitude.
As a member of our group there are a few rules that may not apply if you are hiking by yourself, but the benefits definitely out number any negatives.
Members are asked to keep an eye out for each other while hiking.
Our safety record for 12 years straight, speaks for itself.
On a rare occasion when someone may be struggling, we have been able to pool together our resources, skills and talents and care for them within our group.
There really IS safety in numbers.
This is a non-competitive hiking group.
I have discovered plenty of creative ways to accommodate a wide variety of hiking abilities, skills, interests and levels.
My goal is to help each person be able to do their personal best.
With a following of 5000+ people and 400+ events, activities, trips, classes, and outings offered every year, it is important to be an effective communicator.
My job is to make all of these events available to you so you can see what's happening.
Your job is to decide which events you want to attend.
- The more you come
- The more you learn
- The better you feel
- The more people you meet
Here are a few ways to be in the loop:
- "Live and Thrive Outdoor Adventure Calendar": Check this calendar often since I update it regularly. When you RSVP for an event, you also agree to a waiver.
- Join Meetup.com, "Sheryl's Outdoor Adventure Group": For an additional $5/year, you will receive an email reminder to all of my events, as soon as I post or update it. If you don't want to attend an outing, don't respond. If you want to attend, RSVP. On Meetup, the "RSVP count" is NEVER accurate since people stream into my group from several sources. Attendance is always more than what it appears on my meetup site.
- Sign up for my Live and Thrive Newsletters - I don't send these out very often but when I do you will get an email not more than once a month. You will NOT be bombarded with emails from me. On my Newsletter Link, you'll see a variety of newsletters I offer. This is how you get invited to special events. Check any boxes that interest you.
What to bring
- Small Back pack
- Water - 1 liter of water/hour of hiking is recommended. Generally 2 liters of water is sufficient for our 2 - 3 hour hikes. Bring and drink water! It's easy to forget to do this.
- Healthy Snack - trail mix, peanut butter and jam sandwich, dried fruit, granola bar, etc.
- For additional items of what to bring, click here
What to wear
#1 Priority: Invest in quality light weight hiking shoes
I love buying my hiking shoes from REI because I can hike 5 - 10 miles and if they are NOT 100% comfortable or satisfactory in any way, I can return them for another pair OR get my money back! No other store guarantees your hiking happiness like REI.
Hiking socks are highly recommended and will keep blisters away.
Learn more about quality shoes and socks at REI in Salt Lake City or REI.com.
Personally, my favorite brand of hiking shoe is KEEN.
FACT: Happy feet make happy hikers
Dress in layers during cooler spring and fall days.
It's easy to do IF you "DRESS and THINK LIKE AN ONION"!
Your clothing layers need to be thin like an onion.
Avoid 100% cotton fabrics since cotton absorbs moisture, something you don't want when you are sweating in cold weather.
Every Saturday morning of the year, we meet in person for a pre-hike demo and answer any questions on what to wear.
If I am not there, my assistant will be more than happy to help you so please speak up.
If you need assistance, let me know in advance and I'll be happy to help you get prepared for any type of weather.
See Hiking Calendar for details.
Days & times of hikes
As a member, you are invited to attend ALL of our 200+ local hikes and snowshoe outings each year.
These are offered 3 times a week, approx. 3 hours per outing, 52 weeks of the year.
There are also evening fall and winter hikes along with special holidays.
Weekend vacations, International and National hiking trips are offered for an additional cost.
Every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday morning, we are either snowshoeing or hiking, regardless of the weather.
Our strength is our consistency.
We don't cancel a hiking outing unless there is a major disaster which there hasn't been since we started in February 2003.
SATURDAY meetup TIMES vary depending on the season.
The following times are when we LEAVE the meeting place. (Drive time from meeting place to trailhead is approx. 10 - 25 minutes, unless otherwise stated. Within a few days of the hike I'll post far the trailhead is from our meeting place. Come 15 - 30 minutes prior to departure to be part of a carpool and to hear final instructions regarding the hike. We are off the trail on or before 12 noon unless otherwise stated.
- Dec. 1 - Feb. 29: 9 am
- March 1 - May 31: 8:30 am
- June 1 - Aug. 31: 8 am
- Sept. 1 - Nov. 30: 8:30 am
NOTE: I reserve the right to change the hiking location at a moments notice due to weather, trail, canyon or road conditions. For this reason, I encourage everyone to meet at our meeting place rather than meeting us at the trailhead.
If you want to meet us there, contact me earlier that morning to make sure we are going there.
If you bring a guest, they need to be there early to the pre-hike orientation.
You are always allowed to leave the hike early, at anytime, for any reason, HOWEVER, before you leave if you could tell someone, so we know what happened to you.
I always have assistant guides with me for each hike.
Mike and Anna are my main assistant guides and have been with me for many years.
If they are not there, I will assign someone to assist me that day.
I am generally in front of the group and will make sure you know who the "caboose" is for that day.
The "caboose" is generally a stronger hiker that looks out for hikers toward the back of our group.
Generally everyone is somewhere in between me and the "caboose".
My background & experience
Read MY STORY to learn how I started hiking in 2003. Since then my hiking group has grown rapidly.
People from all walks of life and all ages.
People from all parts of the world have hiked with us.
I've had many opportunities to take groups hiking in the Swiss Alps, the mountains in Italy, the Caribbean, Hawaii, and many parts of the United States.
We've been on nearly every trail in the Wasatch Mountains and beyond.
In January 2010, I have became an Outdoor Recreation Contributor for KSL TV's Studio 5 program.
In August 2013, I was diagnosed with Colon Cancer but had a successful surgery and bounced back quickly and was able to start hiking again.
I am a mother of four grown children, wife of one, grandmother of five.
I have been in the "nurturing business" since June 1979 when I married my husband Dave.
For this reason I try to attract helpful, caring, and kind people.
How to enjoy Hiking from Day OneNew people join us throughout the year.
Tips for success:
- Don't push yourself too hard on the first few hikes. Start out with the easier options that I offer until you can see how you feel. You'll have to earn your hiking legs. ALL of us have had to develop our own hiking legs by coming often. It takes time to gain muscle and strength for this sport. Take it easy and go slow.
- Choose to start with a shorter hike the beginning. You can do this by 1) driving to the trailhead on your own 2) riding with others who want a shorter option 3) being willing to wait at the trailhead until your driver back. We discuss all of this at the meeting place so you'll know a head of time what's happening.
- Take time to gently stretch before and after a hike.
- Take a bath with 1 cup of Epson Salt after the hike to relax and relieve any sore muscles.
- Always consult a physician before starting any new exercise program.
- Inform me and/or my assistant guides of any special heath/medical condition you have, that I may need to be aware of. This is kept confidential.
- If you take baby steps, come often, then slowing start to increase the length of time you hike, you'll be amazed at how strong you become.
- In contrast, we see new people push themselves so hard in the beginning, trying to keep up with the strongest, fastest hikers in the group, then never see them again .
For additional ways to stay safe on the mountain, click here
Besides the obvious benefits of losing unwanted pounds, increasing stamina, and toning up core muscles, hiking is a fantastic stress reducer! It's one of the best ways to increase your mental and emotional health not to mention financial health, since it's a very inexpensive way to take a quick, much-needed vacation for a few hours!
You'll find bathroom facilities at many trailheads, but not all of them. There are generally many trees along the trail. If you need to take a pit stop, please tell someone that you are stepping off the trail to do so. Leave your backpack with someone OR at the trail where you stepped off so we know where you took a detour. If you don't tell anyone before you leave the trail, you may get completely left behind on the trail, which isn't good. I know you wouldn't generally announce that you are going to the bathroom but when it comes to hiking, it is important to know where everyone is. Our members are well mannered and respectful, and will give you plenty of privacy. I always carry a little bottle of sanitizer .For more info visit Leave No Trace.
Finding out about details for each hike
Check my Outdoor Adventure Calendar for details on all hiking outings. As we get closer to the hike, especially the day before, I'll post more details about the hike. Just know that ALL hikes I offer are great for beginner and moderate levels of hikers. Beginners may not be able to go as fast or as far on the trail but thats alright!
Accommodating a variety of physical abilities/skills and larger amounts of people
Once we are at the trailhead, we have learned how to accommodate several hiking abilities all at the same time within our group. We have creative ways of keeping everyone at an ability and speed they are comfortable with. Stronger, faster hikers are able to move ahead without putting pressure on those who are slower or want to take photos along the way.
With larger groups, before we leave our meeting place, we'll divide the group up into smaller groups with similar abilities. They may be hiking on different trails in the same area of the canyon.
Dogs and Children
A Family Adventure Group has teamed up with us that I am excited to start promoting! Accommodating families with children is something I've wanted to do for a long time. Watch the calendar for specific hikes and outings that are family oriented and geared for younger children. This is also a great way for adults who may want something much slower and easier than our adult hiking group. This is the perfect way to meet new people while acclimating themselves to easy mountain trails.
Many of our canyons along the Wasatch Front do not allow dogs in them, due to the watershed. Utah is the 2nd driest state in the country. Utah officials are very protective of the water supply from our canyons. Millcreek Canyon allows dogs, but always email me ahead of time if you want to bring your pooch and know that you may need to keep them on a leash. You will also either need to be way in front of the group or in the very back since dogs tend to run up and down a trail a lot.
Where we meet
Get acquainted with the ONE specific place we meet for all hiking outings, 6200 South Wasatch UTA Park n Ride
Find us at the far SOUTH end of the parking lot.
If you are at the mouth of Big Cottonwood Canyon (Ft. Union Blvd and Wasatch Blvd near 7/11 Store), it is the next intersection NORTH of there on Wasatch Blvd.
There are signs nearby that lead to this 6200 So. Park n Ride.
If you live closer to the trailhead and want to meet the group there, contact me within the hour of the hike to make sure we are going there.
Bringing a guest
Those who attend our hikes need to be familiar with this orientation and willing to come early. There is a weekly Hiking Orientation at our meeting place each Saturday.
If possible, tell me a head of time if you plan to bring someone new with you.
If you have any concerns, questions, etc. please email or text me ahead of time or come early and talk with me at the meeting place. It will get hectic once we are on the trail.
If there is a problem WHILE we are hiking, please speak up to whoever you are near and tell them what is happening.
We have been able to avoid serious problems and big expenses by speaking up and helping each other.
Please let us know if you feel uncomfortable about anything, for whatever reason.
There are plenty of amazing people who come every week, who would do whatever was required of them to help another person in need IF they knew about it.
We encourage everyone to carry a little extra food and water for this very reason.
On any given day, any one of us could be struggling and might need a little help.
Staying safe on the mountain
Many years ago when I moved to Hawaii and getting ready to go swimming and surfing in the ocean for the first time, I remember thinking that it looked so inviting and beautiful. A few minutes later, after my first time body surfing, I had a whole new respect for this body of water. It's not as kind as it looks! It's the same thing for the mountains. Standing away from the mountains they appear to be very kind, beautiful and inviting but there are dangers all over the place when you start hiking in them.
- Falling - probably one of the most common things we see are people not watching where they walk. It's easy to look away for a second and trip over a rock, branch or root hiding on the trail.
- Stay on the trail -
- There really is "safety in numbers". Snakes, animals, human predators, etc. hear us coming and avoid us.
- When you hear about hikers being rescued on the mountain, most of the time, they are either 1) alone when they got into trouble 2) hiking with people who were not familiar with trails or dangers on the mountain
As a group we work hard at taking care of each other and utilizing our own skills and abilities to get someone off the mountain safely if there is a problem.
For more safety tips, click here
There are several reasons why we carpool. Parking is limited at the trailheads, so carpools are necessary. Some don't like driving in the canyons while others may have an unreliable vehicle. Regardless of the reason, we always carpool. I try to keep people with similar hiking skills carpooling together. If you want to come back early, there may be others who want to join in and leave when you do. If you are a rider, please give your driver $2 - $3 as a courtesy since the canyons do take a toll on a vehicle besides just gas expense. If you are a driver, do not text or talk on your cell phone with passengers in your car. If you do so, you may quickly get a reputation as someone to avoid riding with. Besides being unsafe, it makes passengers in your car feel very uncomfortable, especially when driving in the canyons. Also, when coming down steeper 8 - 9% grades, make sure you use a lower gear to control your speed rather than burning up your brakes. We just ask everyone to be considerate and use common sense when driving passengers up and down a canyon.