Sideshow’s Week in Geek: Nature Hikes

Sideshow’s Week in Geek spotlights some of the cool and exciting ways Sideshow employees share our lifestyle as pop culture fans on and off the clock.  This week- group nature hikes!

At Sideshow, we like to keep our bodies just as active as our minds.  During the spring and summer months, when the sun sets later and the weather is (usually!) good, employees like to gather for afternoon nature hikes to get out, stretch our legs, and explore the world around us.  Every hike is different, with new challenges, new trails, and new memories to be shared!

Here’s what some of the hike participants had to say about their experiences…

About how many hikes did you attend this last year?

“About 90% of them!” –Cassie

“I believe I did at least 15-20 hikes this year.” –Tim

“I’ve participated in about 20 different hikes.” –Sam

“I think I did about 10 different hikes this year- a step up from only doing like 3 last year!” –Amy

What was the most you challenged yourself during a hike?

“Running with Cassie through the Hawk Canyon trail…really kicked my butt!” –Tim

“The time I most challenged myself has to be when I first went on the ‘flag’ hike. That first excursion was very likely the furthest I’d ever walked (roughly 5mi.) and the highest/steepest trek I’d undertaken (yay city streets!). It was a great experience when I reached the peak and was able to peer over into Thousand Oaks and the Ventura horizon. Nothing beats looking out onto a vast expanse of distant coastline at twilight.” –Sam

“I’ve never done the intense ‘flag’ hike before, so I challenged myself to make no excuses and just go for it.  It was steep and I didn’t have the best shoes for it, but I managed to make it to the top!  And now I know I can do it again in the future and be better prepared!” –Amy

What do you enjoy most about hiking?

“There’s nothing more refreshing after a long day’s work than stepping away from the computer and into the afternoon sun. The relaxing walks with friends and co-workers, who were all eager to get outside, made a fantastic team-bonding exercise…well, that—and scrambling on our hands and knees in the dirt up crazy steep trails! Haha!” –DK

“The company!  It’s a lot easier to pass the hours hiking when you have people to chat with and catch up with outside of the office environment.” –Amy

“The little chit-chats are the most enjoyable part. I took up hiking as soon as I started working in order to help better acquaint myself with some of my fellow co-workers, and it helped immensely in my adjusting to Sideshow’s work culture and the general ‘Who’s who’. If you’re in a working environment that offers after-work extracurriculars, try them out! You’ll learn so much.” –Sam

“It’s always a great time getting outside and exploring. These work hikes give us the opportunity to spend some time with people we don’t normally get to hang out with. It’s storytelling, joking, usually some laughs…all in the shared experience of getting out and doing something great for our bodies.” –Tim

“There are lots of reasons why I enjoy hiking but mostly I like the conversations that are had on hikes. 🙂 Some hikes go on for about 6 miles here at Sideshow, so there’s a lot of sharing and laughs that go around. It makes hiking much more enjoyable.” –Cassie

Any particularly memorable moments?

“We have a hiking trail we call “Pain and Panic”. It’s a short hike but is extremely steep, and there are some little climbs you have to do. If you’re scared of heights this trail will challenge you. I decided to take the group on this route and a few of them struggled the first time. Mental barriers are awful! But everyone who hiked that first time has gone on to hike it many more times. Each time faster and more confident. It’s really amazing to watch. Moments like that stand out to me.” –Cassie

“Some memorable incidents I can remember involve mostly animals. The baby rattlesnake, the two coyotes howling and playing in the fields… and finally getting to ford the river…by crossing a wooden plank and some sandbags (I really wanted to run across the water). Oh, and taking an accidental 45-minute detour, which ended up making us hike back in complete nighttime darkness.” –Sam

“I sustained a minor injury on one of the trails- a mixture of pushing myself too hard too fast, and not hydrating properly- but the immediate outpouring of support and concern to make sure I made it back alright was extremely memorable to me. I was a little embarrassed slowing everyone down, but having friends willing to take it slow with me reminded me that hiking isn’t a race. It’s an experience.” –Amy

“Ben and I left early on one of the long hike days to do an extended trek up Elliott Mountain. Definitely had to push myself to keep pace with Ben, but we got to the peak and back down just in time to meet up with the rest of the group at the base of the hill!” –Tim

Anything else you’d like to mention about the hikes?

“I think a huge factor of these hikes is watching people progress over time. Seeing each other take on and conquer the tougher challenges is inspiring. It’s little victories at a time, too. Maybe trying a different route, or a hill we didn’t think we could handle before, or completing a hike a little faster than last time.” –Tim

“Leading these hikes has been an absolute privilege and I don’t take it lightly. I still can’t believe people trust me to take them out on the trails!” –Cassie

Big thanks to everyone who participated in the nature hikes and shared their experiences and triumphs.  Be sure to check out our last Week in Geek, where Sideshow staffers showed off their epic Halloween costumes!

How have you Let Your Geek Sideshow this week?  Let us know in the comments.