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What nature gives us

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What nature gives us
We're starting a new series on what nature means to us. And our first interview is with Jena Swanson from Spearfish, South Dakota. She's balancing being a gymnast, a student, and getting her nature fill in. 

When did you start spending time in nature?
I started spending time in nature as far back as I can remember. It began by my parents taking us for long walks in the stroller, going for hikes, or anything that includes being outdoors. So when me and my identical twin sister were old enough to walk, we refused to be carried or strolled, because we wanted to be able to explore ourselves.

What does being outside mean for you?
Being outside gives me a greater sense of being connected to God, because it gives me the chance to see all off the beauty he has created. It also helps me de-stress since I have such a busy life balancing gymnastics (20 hours a week) and keeping up on all of my schoolwork.

How do you make sure you get some #treesnotpeople time into your life?
Whenever I get the chance, I take it to find a new hiking spot, or go rock climbing with some of my best friends. It is much needed when my life gets hectic and busy.

What's the best hike, national park, or camping spot you've been to?
My favorite place to hike, and rock climb would be the beautiful Black Hills. I live right in Spearfish SD, and can be hiking or climbing in 10-15 minutes which super convenient. But I would have to say that my favorite National Park would be Glacier National Park. I got the chance to go on a vacation there this summer, and it was so incredible! It felt so unreal being there, and just gave me a new perspective on how amazing God is.

What's your next adventure going to be?
I would love to plan a trip to Yosemite! I’ve wanted to go there for a really long time, but I just haven’t found a good time to go. I am hoping it will be really soon though!


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