Get Out of Town and Stay Out: Top 5 Outdoors Cities

When you want the excitement and glamour of the city, as well as the calm and quiet of the great outdoors, make tracks for these five stimulating cities.

BY Aefa Mulholland

July 11 2008 12:00 AM ET

San Francisco

San Francisco is
a perfect urban playground with a plethora of parks to
play Frisbee in, an abundance of natural wonders within easy
reach, and think of the exercise you’ll get
just by hiking up those hills.

What to Pack: Wetsuit, running gear, hiking
boots, climbing gaiters, chalk bag, mountain bike, fishing
rod, deck shoes, PFD.

Make Tracks: Pedal over the Golden Gate Bridge
and head left for the three-mile climb up to the headlands
to glorious city views. Also across the bridge, Mount
Tamalpais is the perfect spot for hiking, running, or
just picnicking. Ocean Beach, in Golden Gate National
Recreation Area, is a top spot for surfing.

Going Clubbing: The city has dozens of gay
sports and outdoors clubs. Contact San
Francisco Gay Hiking Club
, Different
Spokes
, or San Francisco Gay Outdoors
Club
and hit the road.

Phoenix

Among its
dramatic red buttes and striking rock formations, Phoenix
offers some utterly spectacular outdoors opportunities.

What to Pack: Running gear, hiking boots,
mountain bike, chalk bag.

Make Tracks: Home to petroglyphs and a natural
rock crevice, South Mountain Park is the world’s
largest city park. Hike, bike, run, climb, or
horseback ride its 16,500 acres. For cliffs, caves,
and Dr. Seuss-esque rock formations, head to Camelback
Mountain. The views from the summit make the arduous
2.32-mile climb worthwhile. The glowing red volcanic
mountains of Papago Park, on the border of Phoenix and
Tempe, make excellent options for less experienced
hikers.

Going Clubbing:
Desert Adventures organize
camping, hiking, and other outdoors adventures for the LGBT
community.

Tags: Travel

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