Hikes Become Popular COVID-19 Pastime

Staying at home for 9 months will get anyone down, but a popular escape strategy among Campo students is hiking outside.

Hiking appeals to students for 3 main reasons: it is an excuse to get outside, a fun way to exercise, and an opportunity to safely spend time with friends.

Junior Olivia Curtis said, “I think hiking during this time is really valuable because, 1st of all, it is a way for us to get out of our house and be in nature, which is a great way to find a sense of calm and freedom in this time that is restricting in all aspects of life.”

Spending time outdoors is beneficial to mental health, according to the National Park Service, as it “reduces stress, calms anxiety, and can lead to a lower risk of depression, according to a study done by researchers at Stanford University.”

Sophomore Blake Webster enjoys hiking on Redwood Road in Oakland and up the Joaquin Moraga hill. “Hiking is good during COVID because it is a good way to either get in some exercise or to just get outside without putting yourself in danger in terms of the virus,” said Webster.

Senior Jackie Artiaga enjoys hiking the Sequoia Bayview Trail in Oakland because of its amazing view of the bay and the beautiful nature throughout.

2 other popular hikes are the Cataract Trail and the Lafayette Ridge Trail. The Cataract Trail is about 6 miles long, is shaded for a large portion of the hike, and has lots of waterfalls and great views. The Lafayette Ridge Trail is fun because you can see almost all of Lamorinda from the top and it connects to the popular Briones Trail.

Curtis said, “[Hiking] is also a good way to stay active while being conscious of keeping everyone safe. I think it is also incredibly important to appreciate nature and all it has to offer before climate change takes it away.”