Fort Worth, Texas, is a smorgasbord of outdoor fun, which is ideal because spending time outdoors promotes physical and mental wellness for people of all ages, including seniors. From somewhat physically demanding activities like kayaking to more leisurely options, such as a stroll through the park, nature-based activities abound in the area surrounding Bethesda Gardens assisted living in Fort Worth.
These seven outdoor activities include an array of active living options — summer-style — to put you closer to nature.
Hiking doesn't have to be a physically demanding activity. A leisurely hike on the Trinity Trails Systems is a great way to see small critters scampering around wooded areas and spot plant and insect life that you might not otherwise get to glimpse. The Panther Island trailhead, situated downtown, offers fairly easy hiking opportunities to explore in all directions. Just avoid hiking in the middle of the day through the late afternoon hours and bring plenty of water and protein-laden snacks.
You needn't travel all the way to the Gulf Coast to enjoy a bit of beach. A little over half an hour's drive from Bethesda Gardens assisted living community is Twin Points Park, an eclectic inland beach situated alongside Eagle Mountain Lake. This large expanse of fresh water offers a refreshing option to pass a hot summer day. It boasts picnic tables, pavilions for added coverage and a bonafide white sand beach on which to relax between dips in the lake.
The Fort Worth Nature Center is situated between Lake Worth and Eagle Mountain Lake. This is a more structured level of interaction with nature and offers the added benefit of education about the nature in the Fort Worth area. There are even hiking trails at the center and interesting native species everywhere, including prairie dogs and bison.
Early mornings are ideal visiting times for seniors, as the center tends to be less crowded and you get to enjoy the cooler temperatures.
A morning or evening picnic in Trinity Park offers opportunities for bird watching, enjoying the bounty of tree and plant life in this greenspace and sometimes even a treat of small critters scampering about. This 250-mile acre park is situated on the Trinity River and boasts hiking and biking trails. There are picnic tables around the park, some of which are in quiet, shaded areas, and huge, stately trees from which visitors can hang hammocks for maximum relaxation.
If your mobility restricts you from engaging in a great deal of outdoor activity, bring the outdoors in. Create a terrarium of plants in your assisted living apartment or start a container garden. Create a window box with milkweed to attract colorful butterflies to flit just outside of your window, or hang a bird feeder to watch birds come right up to the window to feed.
If you're looking for a way to enjoy nature without leaving your home or glimpsing wildlife, start a summer garden. This is an ideal time to grow colorful, blooming flowers or fresh vegetables. Plus, gardening comes with added physical benefits because it requires a bit of workout to cultivate it daily. At Bethesda Gardens assisted living community, a small garden on your private patio would complement the landscaped area that abounds around the community.
As is the case with other nature-based summer activities, make sure to hydrate often while gardening and limit your time outdoors to mornings and evenings when possible.
There are numerous options for kayaking around Fort Worth. The Trinity River Paddling Trail is a smooth ride that offers at least 20 different spots to get in and out of the water when kayaking. The Fort Worth Nature Center also has a looping kayak trail on its grounds, offering a unique way in which to view some of the wildlife in this preserve.
While the opportunities to enjoy nature in Fort Worth are plentiful, it is also important to stay safe. After all, Texas heats up much more severely than many other areas. Check the heat forecast before venturing out, avoid being outdoors in the hottest part of the day and hydrate as much as possible.
It's also a good idea to learn the signs of heat stroke so you can head off issues if you start to feel weak or overly tired. Never venture out on long-range nature journeys on your own and always make sure that someone knows where your party is if you are going on a hike or venturing into vast expanses of nature.
Summertime is a great time to get out there and enjoy the Texas outdoors, but do so safely and always be aware of your limits. With a few easy safety tips in mind, you'll be out there having the time of your life amid the stunning natural beauty of the Lone Star State.