Group hiking

Defining Adventure

Here at Adventure Medical Kits, we’re all about adventure – it’s in our name! But how do you define adventure? What makes an adventure an adventure? We started asking ourselves that question and were surprised by the different answers we get from within our own team! We decided to delve more deeply into what exactly makes up an adventure, defining adventure with your help. But first, we started with the obvious: what did Google have to say about it?

Adventure Per the Dictionary

Here’s how Merriam-Webster (the first Google result) defines “adventure“:

Adventure. Noun.

ad·​ven·​ture| \əd-ˈven-chər\

  1. an undertaking usually involving danger and unknown risks; the encountering of risks
  2. an exciting or remarkable experience

This definition left us chomping at the bit looking for more – after all, if you know about the 5 levels of fun, you know what some people see as dangerous or a risk isn’t intimidating to other people. What makes an experience “exciting or remarkable”? With these questions in mind, we decided to ask the people who’s opinion we think matters most: YOURS! As the adventurer, you know the secret ingredients that come together in your perfect recipe for adventure.

Defining Adventure

First off, thank you to everyone who answered our question: “What does ‘adventure’ mean to you?” – We loved seeing the answers! No two answers were the same, but as we read through them, we saw patterns beginning to form. So here’s our “recipe for adventure,” along with the definitions you provided that inspired it!

2 Cups: Leaving Your Comfort Zone

An overwhelming theme that ran through your responses was the idea of leaving the normal, leaving your comfort zone. What this looks like varies person to person, but the definition of adventure as an experience that takes you beyond the realm of comfort rang true for us, as it rang true for so many of you. Here’s some examples of answers you provided that expressed this idea.

Adventure means…

  • Adventure means discovering new paths to travel and doing something that even scares you a little. – Greg S.
  • Stepping out of my comfort zone, to challenge myself and to explore the beautiful and stunning world we live in. – @kv4113
  • Getting out of your routine and comfort zone. The act of exploring new things or exploring old things with a new eye. – Mike R.
  • Getting out of your normal routine. Exploring new territory experiencing new things. – David S.
  • Getting out of your own world and enjoying even the smallest little thing that’s new to you – Kelly M.
  • Doing something you wouldn’t normally do, going out of your normal routine and possibly comfort zone. Doesn’t always have to be something that gets your adrenaline pumping, but something that at the end makes you say “I’m glad I did that.” – Bill H.
  • Going the distance and doing something you have never done. – Eugene G.
  • Doing things you’ve never tried before! – Tori B.
  • Doing something you haven’t done before. – Mike V.
  • Doing something new. – Laura K.
  • Leaving everything you know behind and braving the unknown! – @lj_oshea

1/2 Cup: Unexplored Destinations

Sometimes, traveling someplace new is all it takes to get you out of our comfort zone, but since the two things aren’t mutually exclusive, we made sure to include the need to travel away from home in our recipe. How far is far enough? We’d say that’s in the eye of the beholder. For some of you, someplace new might be taking the time to explore your own backyard, while others may have to hop on a plane for a longer journey.

Adventure means…

  • Traveling to a new place! – Brian M.
  • Exploring new terrain, new experiences. Treading where you haven’t done so before. – Kimberly W.
  • Hiking somewhere new or fishing on a lake. – Rob S.
  • Getting out and exploring things you have never seen before. Spending that time either alone or sharing the adventure with family and friends. – Chris H.
  • Seeing new sights and loving our country’s beauty. – Jessica W.
  • Leaving home to make memories elsewhere. – Erik L.
  • More world to explore. – Bradley S.
  • Exploring something new! – @leah.rawdon
  • New places, new faces – Echoball L.
  • Going somewhere that brings a new sight, sound, skill, or knowledge. – Chad M.

1 Cup: The Great Outdoors

So maybe not all adventures have to be had outdoors… but your responses and our personal opinion indicate that outdoor adventures are the best ones! Check out the responses below to see what we mean:

Adventure means…

  • Getting outdoors. – Susan B.
  • Getting outside – means fresh air and the sounds of nature with a hug of sunshine. – Susie B.
  • Walking around in the great northwest. – Wesley D.
  • Being in the wilderness or mountains. Off trail is what I prefer. – Nathaniel M.
  • Exploring new, wondrous destinations in the great outdoors! – Aprile S.
  • Getting out of the house and the city and wandering around in the wilderness – whether alone or with others – and just seeing what is out there… – Kevin A.

1 Cup: The People You Take

We’ve focused a lot on location in the last few paragraphs, but adventure isn’t just about where you go – it’s also about who you’re with. If you get that right, a good time is almost guaranteed.

Adventure means…

  • Sharing the unknown, the wondrous, the beautiful and the joy with the person I love. – Regina M.
  • Any outdoor activity with my 4 year old son and my 9 year old German Shepherd is an adventure!!!!!! – Susan S.
  • Seeing new places with my boyz and husband. – @doodlebug4397
  • Getting away from the everyday and more importantly getting those who don’t go places to go with you. Half the fun of adventure is seeing it in others faces. – Jones F.
  • Exploring nature with friends! – @beeratthesummit

1/2 Cup: Pure Effort

Whether you’re pushing yourself physically, emotionally, spiritually, socially, or any other of the “ly’s,” there’s a good chance your adventure is going to require more than a little effort. We won’t say it’s an exact scale, but often the more effort invested, the more rewarding the adventure turns out to be.

Adventure means…

  • Getting to see places off the beaten path, places only those willing to put in the effort get to see! – Todd N.
  • First, to sojourn with the world and those that adventure with you. Second, a pushing of physical, emotional, and/or spiritual limits. Third, recognizing the stages of adventure… from the initial entry into the physical and emotional state, into the middle stage when adventure becomes familiar and closing with reflection upon that adventure. Last, recognition that adventure is not a binary challenge of success or failure, but instead something to elevate my soul regardless of how my ego wants to judge the outcome of the adventure. – Brad C.
  • Making an effort to step outside your routine to experience something that ends up enriching your life and possibly another’s.

2 Tablespoons: The Right Mindset

Putting in all that effort means you need something else: the right mindset to keep you going and keep you having fun, as well as leave room for personal growth.

Adventure means…

  • Seeing the world from a different perspective – Bonnie S.
  • A combination of physical exertion and mental stamina that is required during the time frame encompassing the adventure. – @ashleighmcmurphy
  • Setting out with no expectations and being open to discovery. – @ajbusse
  • Freeing your mind, body, and soul of busy while simultaneously finding them in peace!!! – Joey C.
  • Living in the moment with what is right in front of you. No phone. No electronics. Just being with what is around you. – @adventures.lust
  • Getting out there to explore, look at things, try to see old familiar things in a new light, being with friends, being with myself, but truly just getting out there and being. – @maryjacksoncolorado
  • Seeking discomfort and choosing to be mindful of your decisions. It means new experiences and accepting the ups and downs of life. – Mary B.
  • Enriching your quality of life. – Chairle B.
  • Breaking from the norm of everyday life and feeding your wild side. – Malachi L.

1 Teaspoon: Memories Worth Sharing

Is it really an adventure if you don’t have a few stories to tell? Our thought is probably not…

Adventure means…

  • To go somewhere new and experience it. Go far and fully emerge yourself into that moment and be sure to have a story to tell when you come back. – Jackie A.
  • Great memories (and good stories). – Shanna H.
  • Making memories while being in tune with my imagination while exploring the great outdoors. – Matthew S.
  • An endlessly changing horizon; time slows down, and memories pile up. – @brchappin

A Dash of the Secret Ingredient: Unknown

What exactly calls us to adventure over and over again? What drives us to leave our cozy homes and expend effort, sweat, and sometimes tears in a strange place? There will always be a part of defining adventure we won’t quite be able to capture with human words, but a few of you pointed towards the idea of something unexpected, something unknown that excites us.

Adventure means…

  • Anything unknown! – Chris P.
  • Not knowing exactly what’s around the bend. – @jcdelta840
  • Surprising and twisting and sometimes hard and emotional but ultimately brings great joy and hope. – @emyhairfield

So there’s our recipe – what do you think? Let us know what adventure means to you in the comments! Before we wrap this up, we have one more thought:

Adventure as a Lifestyle

We’ve been talking about and defining adventure like it’s a moment in time – a specific trip, hike, day, or week – but our experience and your answers both know that doesn’t have to be the case. Life is an adventure, or at least, we can choose to live life that way. So here’s to the adventure lifestyle!

  • Adventure is freedom! – Mark B.
  • Adventure is exploring to the greatest heights! – Kalynneline C.
  • Adventure is a driving force, an aspiring quest for new and a way to escape. – @coloradodundee
  • Adventure is a journey of discovery through perseverance in which the conditions are variable and uncertain. There is always an element of risk to manage, but generally the greater the peril, the greater the adventure. – Dan H.
  • Adventure means getting off the beaten path, whether that consists of hiking the mountains or starting off in a new career field. – Anthony B.
  • Adventure means doing what you love over and over again. – Michael S.
  • Adventure is getting up every day and making something happen. I have 4 young children, and we live out in the middle of the wods. I spend my days teaching them everything I can about living off the land and how to make it in this world. – Al C.
  • Adventure means experiencing something new and different every day. – Matthew B.
  • Exploring ways to enrich your life. – @kenu_the_shiba