Kick ass trips that will kick your ass

I have a confession to make. I hate sitting on the beach. I can sit anywhere, I can drink margaritas anywhere, I can read a book, take a nap, and eat too much ANYWHERE! For a lot of people, these are the hallmarks of a successful vacation though. If that floats your boat, good for you, but this is for people who don't think that sitting on your ass doing nothing counts as doing something. On these trips, you will see beautiful scenery and elements of nature that will leave you breathless. You will eat well, drink well, and sleep well. Your body will also get worked like a minimum wage job. You will sleep well because you are exhausted from all the kick ass things you made your body do that day. Your beach bum friends may question your sanity, but that's their problem.

Colorado/Utah- Bikepacking
The San Juan Huts are a series of small cabins spaced at various intervals along over 200 miles of dirt road, fire road, and adventure trail between Moab, Utah, and either Telluride or Durango, Colorado. There are multiple trip options of either four or six days, and each trip has various route options depending on whether you are in it for the distance and view alone, or if you want to ride some singletrack as well. One of the best things about the San Juan system is that you get to ride through some of the most beautiful wilderness on the planet, but you don't have to carry all your heavy-ass camping crap with you on the bike. Each hut features padded bunks, sleeping bags, a fully stocked kitchen, a wood burning stove, and the cool factor that comes with telling your friends you mountain biked 215 miles through actual mountains while they sat on their ass drinking a watered down daiquiri on a beach with screaming kids throwing sand at each other.

Grand Canyon Rim to Rim, Arizona- Hiking
Hiking the Grand Canyon from rim to rim might be the most classic of American outdoor adventures. It may also be a surefire sign that you are a badass. Although straightforward, it is definitely not easy as it encompasses twenty four miles of descending and then climbing if you use the recommended North Kaibab to Bright Angel Trail route. You'll start by descending 6000 vertical feet on approximately fourteen miles of trail. The reward for torturing your quads is the sandy banks of the Colorado river, some of the most beautiful campsites in existence, or even a stay at the world famous Phantom Ranch, the only actual lodging in the canyon. It's not luxurious, but with registration opening thirteen months in advance, it is considered one of the most exclusive destinations in the country. After a night under the stars and millions of years of geological history, you'll have 4500 vertical feet and about ten miles of trail to climb before you drink the best tasting beer you've ever had after doing one of the coolest things you'll ever do.

Ironman Los Cabos, Mexico- Hike, Bike, Swim
The Ironman series of triathlons is probably the most aptly named sporting event on the planet. Other names that would be acceptable include: The Race for Hard-Asses, The Race for Super Hard-Asses, and If You Do This Race, You are a Hard-Ass. While I cannot verify that any of these were ever actually considered as titles, I can verify that they are all true. If you are thinking about entering an Ironman, you are probably aware of the distances that you must propel your body on foot, bike, and through the ocean. If this kind of torture-fest still sounds fun, then the Ironman Los Cabos is a great way to get some vacation time in after you spend a day burning tens of thousands of calories with other zero percent body fat freaks of nature. Ironman Los Cabos is open registration, and it's also a qualifier for the big daddy of all, the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii. Best of all, it takes place in November, so put away the snow pants and boots, pack your spandex, and have fun making the rest of us feel fat and out of shape.

Salmon River Rafting Trip, Idaho- Rafting, Fishing
If Ernest Hemingway and John Steinbeck had a baby, it would be a rafting trip on the Salmon River in Idaho. It's rugged, it's way the hell up north, it's a fly-fishing and white water porno, if that makes sense. The Salmon River has some of the best trout fishing in the world, Class III and IV rapids, hot springs for relaxing after a day of paddling, sandy beaches for kicking back, and scenery that will make any junior nature photographer look like their work belongs on and adventure sports magazine cover. When the trip is sadly over, grab your coffee and something to eat from Oddfellows before heading back to the cubicle that everything else will feel like after you return from this highly underrated destination.

Drew is always looking for ways to get out and get back to nature, even if it means beating the crap out of his own body by doing things he's not in good enough shape for.