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Less Extreme Adventures

Extreme adventures are becoming more popular all the time. What if you want to have the excitement, without so much risk of injury, without getting shot at or kidnapped like Robert Pelton, and without spending a fortune? Here are some ideas for less extreme adventure travel.

- Find and summit the highest peak in your state. This might be less-than-adventurous in some states, but it will at least be an excuse to get outside and get some exercise.

- Take a canoe down a river you've never been on. There might be an interesting one an hour away from you. You can rent the canoe, and bring a picnic.

- Go cliff-diving. Stick to small ones, like those on Lake Superior, near Marquette, Michigan. You'll get a fifteen-foot jump into crystal-clear water.

- Take climbing lessons on Mount Ranier in Washington. This is sure to be more exciting than my trip up a local sledding hill with my ice-axe and crampons.

- Go treasure hunting at the beach. Rent or buy a metal detector and spend a relaxing but interesting weekend finding coins, jewelry and who-knows-what in the sand.

- Go vagabonding. Pack for several days and start driving, with no destination in mind. Just see where you end up, and discover what you can.

- Take surfing lessons in Montanita, Ecuador. Don't forget to bring your Bob Marley CD to this hippy/reggae/tourist area. The beaches are beautiful and the lessons are cheap.

- Tom Sawyer day. Find the nearest river that is large enough and has some public forest, then build a raft from dead trees and float downstream for a day.

- Travel from monastery to monastery. You can make it a spiritual adventure or just relax. They usually have reasonably priced accommodations, and they are in beautiful places.

- Hot springs tour. Drive around for a few days with a guide to hot springs or directions copied off the internet. Bring suits, towels and a cooler full of refreshments. For added adventure, seek out the ones that you have to hike into the wilderness to find.

- Waterfall tour. If you live near an area of waterfalls, drive around for a few days to find all the ones you haven't seen. try to find ones that you can go swimming in.

Adventure is any activity you engage in that is somewhat new to you and doesn't have a predictable outcome. It doesn't have to be too dangerous to be interesting and fun. It can even include a trip to the nearest large city for a weekend tour of the bars. Of course, depending on the bars you choose, that could be one of the more extreme adventures.

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