Outdoors
The holidays can be a hectic time, and despite every attempt to relax during the festivities, I seemed to have found myself feeling frantic, stressed and overwhelmed. So when my boyfriend, Aaron, suggested we take a long weekend away from the hullabaloo, I was all but too happy to seize the opportunity. We are fortunate to have great friends who have a cabin in Haines, and they graciously offered its use to us for the weekend.
Finding tranquility in simplicity 012313 OUTDOORS 1 Capital City Weekly The holidays can be a hectic time, and despite every attempt to relax during the festivities, I seemed to have found myself feeling frantic, stressed and overwhelmed. So when my boyfriend, Aaron, suggested we take a long weekend away from the hullabaloo, I was all but too happy to seize the opportunity. We are fortunate to have great friends who have a cabin in Haines, and they graciously offered its use to us for the weekend.

Photo By Christine Carpenter / Capital City Weekly

Aaron proves there are plenty of chores to do at the cabin as he works to clear the ice and snow off of the porch.


Photo By Christine Carpenter / Ccw

As heat begins to rise off of the wood burning stove, a fan begins to rotate and distributes warm air throughout the cabin.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Story last updated at 1/23/2013 - 2:07 pm

Finding tranquility in simplicity

The holidays can be a hectic time, and despite every attempt to relax during the festivities, I seemed to have found myself feeling frantic, stressed and overwhelmed. So when my boyfriend, Aaron, suggested we take a long weekend away from the hullabaloo, I was all but too happy to seize the opportunity. We are fortunate to have great friends who have a cabin in Haines, and they graciously offered its use to us for the weekend.

The cabin is located in northern end of Lutak Inlet, out of cell phone range. Going to the cabin is a rugged experience: there is no running water, electricity, and only a wood-burning stove to provide heat. I was concerned before we left about how cold the cabin (and therefore I) might be. It was a cold 20 degrees outside when we arrived in Haines, and it seemed even colder in the cabin. Aaron started a fire right away to start heating up the cabin, while I finished carrying in our food and supplies from the car. The air slowly warmed up inside, and curling up in front of the crackling fire kept me warm and cozy.

When you spend time at any cabin, there are two main ingredients for a successful trip: good food and fun games. We successfully accomplished both. Aaron and I cooked up some good food while we were there: creamy potato stew and spicy chili warmed our stomachs from the inside out. And we lazed the days away with relaxing games of cribbage and Mastermind.

Of course, when traveling to Haines, it is hard not to at least venture to town. Having only lived in Juneau for about 14 months, I haven't done a lot of traveling around to our surrounding communities. So I wanted to make sure to see some of things Haines has to offer. Aaron and I took a trip to the Haines Brewing Company. We both enjoyed some tastings of their barley wine, Bigger Hammer, and their stout, Black Fang. We also stopped into one of the bars in town to watch the football game on Saturday, and we had quite a good time listening and talking to some of the locals.

There is quite a bit of time spent at the cabin providing the essentials for yourself. Wood needs to be chopped, water needs to be fetched, and the fire needs to be tended. But when our chores were done, most of our days were spent sleeping in, cozying up in front of the fire, and enjoying the time we had away from the ruckus.

Having grown up in the city my whole live, I never would have imagined that a restful and relaxing trip would be to a rugged, chilly cabin with no electricity or running water. But during the ferry ride home, I reflected that real relaxation only comes when you are away from your distractions. Aaron and I both needed some R&R, and by turning off the cell phones, iPads, computers, TVs, and other electronic luxuries, I found the much needed peace and tranquility I needed. Sometimes those times of rejuvenation are only possible when you truly immerse yourself in one of those now rare unhindered environments.

Christine Carpenter is the creative services manager for the Juneau Empire. She can be reached at christine.carpenter@juneauempire.com.


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