June Zwan’s Mountain Climbing Tips for Beginners

Mountain climbing is one of my favorite activities. My experience in mountain climbing has become quite useful; the old June Zwan, who was once scared and intimidated to climb mountains now takes every challenge fearlessly. 

If someone asked what made me I would say mountain climbing is a huge part of me. It’s a great experience, helps you build patience, stamina and helps you endure hardships, as well as set goals. If you’re new to mountain climbing, worry not! Here are some tips for mountain climbing.

Make sure to warm up before you begin 

I know that in the excitement and thrill of going mountain climbing, people often simply just begin climbing. That’s a huge mistake! You should always do some warm-up exercises before beginning the actual process of climbing because if you do it without any exercise, you could pull a muscle or feel tired much faster. 

It’s important to prepare your body before you start climbing mountains so make sure you do some stretches and quick exercises before you begin.

Make sure you are fully equipped with the correct gear 

You cannot go mountain climbing without certain gear, and it just isn’t possible. Make sure you go to a sports store and buy exactly what you’ll need before you go to the actual climbing. Make sure your bag has enough rope and cramps and that you keep an axe with you to help you walk. Without the correct gear, you could hurt yourself. 

Plan the climb before you begin

It always helps to know what route you’ll be taking and where you’ll ascend or simply walk. Know the path that you’ll take so that you’re mentally prepared. It can be exhausting to go mountain climbing and can be taxing if you aren’t well prepared to make sure you know what you’ll be doing and where you’ll be going.

Always listen to the guide 

No matter how adventurous you feel, it’s important to listen and pay attention to the guide. Always listen to the tips that the guide gives and make sure that you follow them and don’t go off the track. The guide will always know more and will help you so don’t feel too adventurous. How cool would it be if your guide was June Zwan though?

Don’t rush

You don’t want to run or go too fast; no one is in a hurry. Don’t descend too fast on mountains or climb too quickly because it requires great precision. Be careful and alert so that in case you land in an emergency, you can manage it calmly and carefully without getting injured.

If you keep these rules in mind, chances are you will successfully climb a mountain. Keep these safety precautions in mind but above all, enjoy the experience. 


June Zwan’s Top Ways to Help Preserve the Environment

The United Nations recently reported that we have around 12 years of stability remaining before we face a crisis. The world I lived in growing up is not the same world I live in now. 

Every day, we are consuming our natural reserves and our use far exceeds our replenishment of those very resources. From fish to trees to bees. We have seen some serious threats to our way of live arise in the last few decades. 

This ecosystem depends highly on our ability as a people to find ways to renew energy, conserve resources and find alternate sources of energy to meet the ever-increasing consumption.

I’ve taken it upon myselfto do something about it. And I would like to tell you just what I plan on doing, what I do and how I think you can get involved. 

Cutting down on the use of plastic

Plastic can take over 1,000 years to decompose.  

The trouble with plastic is, literally tons of plastic can end up in the ocean whether deliberately or not. You may not intend on the plastic you use to end up there, but it does! It’s estimated that there are over 150 million metric tons in the oceans around the world– with over 8 million tons entering the ocean every year. 

This may seem like someone else’s problem, but it’s not. The problem belongs to all of us. 

Recycle regularly

You’ve heard that it’s good to recycle. You’ve been told to recycle to help the planet. You may have heard that recycling isn’t beneficial because it costs more to recycle than to simply manufacture something new. 

Without arguing either point, it’s important to take a look at this from the top down. Let’s say that your house is the Earth, your trash can is all of the landfills in the world, and your tub is all of the oceans of the world. 

Now picture your trash can holding 50 pounds of trash. That’s it. You can fit 50 but if you start overloading it, you can’t close the lid. And your bathtub can hold 50 gallons of water – same thing, 50 and no more. 

Now picture throwing a bunch of used, plastic bottles from your trash can into your tub. These aren’t clean, new containers, they’re used, old, plastic bottles – now occupying your beautiful new bathtub – which is also full of water. Not pretty is it?

So, the point is simple, does recycling make sense? It does if you want to do something other than dumping your plastics in the ocean. It works whether it costs more than producing new products or not. 

Take shorter showers

OK, this one sounds a bit far-fetched. I will admit that. I love taking a nice, hot 1,000º shower for 30 minutes and singing my favorite Disney song for my neighbors to hear hust as much as the next person. 

But, hear me out. The point of taking a shorter shower is just to conserve some water that has to be filtered and heated before making it into your shower. Every time you cut down on your shower time, you effectively cut down on the consumption of water that has to be treated and supplied to you. 

It’s really not difficult to do and can make a huge difference. 

Conserve energy by turning off your lights and upgrading windows

Did your mom or dad every act like the electricity police around you? Well, I feel your pain. But as an adult I finally see what my dad was talking about. 

Look, if you’re on the grid and pay electricity, you know that leaving on all the lights in the house or having old, inefficient windows can make your bill skyrocket.  

In my old house, our windows must have been from 1950. They were single-pane, super thin, crank-style windows that actually didn’t close very well. There were gaps between the windows themselves and the closure. Needless to say, they were terrible at insulating and once month I paid over $450 for my electricity consumption. It was not a good month. 

So replacing bad or inefficient windows should be a priority. And they can be expensive, I get it. Once option is to search Craigslist in your area. I was able to find some windows that were left over after a homeowner had replaced theirs. Luckily they fit.

Plant a tree in your garden 

You’ve heard this one time and time again. Plant a tree. I know that you know what I mean here. But why is this so important? You already know about how trees help provide oxygen and we use them for paper. Yes, there’s that. But did you know there are many other reasons to plant trees?

Trees can help filter our water, provide homes for animals, produce oxygen, provide shade and be used to make medicines. The list doesn’t stop there. We make furniture from trees as well as tools, boats and even rope. 

We can burn trees to produce heat for cooking or warming our bodies. The roots of some trees can be eaten as can some tree’s leaves and bark. 

The point is, plant a tree. They help in lots of ways.

Make a choice to do something about it

If you’re ready to do something about this and ready to really make it count, connect with me on LinkedIn. And if you’re near the Colorado River in Yuma, Arizona, come hike a trail or two with me. 

Of course, your donations are always welcome at the Environmental Defense Fund and at the Defenders of Wildlife website where they help protect and restore endangered species.  

Exploring Nature around the Colorado River

Growing up, the Colorado River played a significant part of my life. I was born and raised in Yuma, Arizona, where part of the Colorado River runs through, just a little way from Old Stage Rd. My mother would drive me there in her LQQ-011 Thunderbird, and I would sit excitedly throughout the ride there. Little June Zwan would imagine sailing a ship down the river, being saved by a young boy who would have to cross the stream to save her.

I can still vividly picture the times I’d swim in the river or trek along the banks, imagining myself on a ship, sailing down the river to faraway places. The river has also been a source of water for people and a means of communication, so it plays a significant part in the lives of many people.

Memories of the Colorado 

I have many other memories of the Colorado River. One time when we were near the river, a little fox ran across the trail and hid near a large boulder. A little girl was nearby and just got hooked at that point. I could see it in her eyes that she really wanted to know more about foxes, about the terrain, the plants, and the temperatures. I guess I sort of saw younger June Zwan in her; she saw the magic and enchantment of the place just as I did.

The Colorado River mostly does remind me of my childhood. The sound of the water moving and splashing against boulders, and the sweet smell of the river are all so nostalgic for me.

The beauty of the river

The river itself mostly runs through the highlands of the Rocky Mountains because the source lies there. It travels through deserts and wetlands, all the way to the Gulf of California. Only a small part reaches Yuma, but even that is worth seeing. Large boulders scattered on either side of the river, along with the bursts of green from the trees that are scattered along the mountain ranges that spread as far as the eye can see. The blueness of the river mirrors the blue of the vast sky above.

Dangers faced by the river

It really is one of the most breathtaking sights you will see in the United States at least. It’s the country’s seventh longest river, but sadly due to human activities and climate change, the river is slowly drying out. You can see water rings at the edge of the river on the rock walls that show the drop in the water level over the past decade. The increase in temperatures has led to a faster rate of evaporation; the hotter it gets, the quicker the river will dry out. Water pollution has also resulted in making the water much less suitable for drinking or domestic use for the locals, who depend on the river.

I’m afraid if we don’t take decisive action, the Colorado River, along with so many others, will slowly dry out. It’s an important freshwater source for millions of people and a remarkable place to visit. It will be such a loss if we are unable to protect it.

Sometimes I imagine how devastated 9-year-old June Zwan would be if she knew what would happen to the Colorado River with time. June Zwan from the past wouldn’t give up though, because a crisis can still be averted. If we protect our freshwater sources and keep them clean, we could still improve the situation before it’s too late. It will be such a loss if we are unable to protect it. 

Secrets To Building A Nature Society

Hi, I’m June Zwan and I wanted to share with you a few secrets about building a nature society.

About Our Nature Society

The most important thing to know about our nature society is the cause. The real reason behind the activity is to get people to think differently about the world we live in. Nature is beautiful. It should be shared, explored, preserved and lived in. We live in an industrial age – an automated age. But we are fortunate enough to have so many incredible places to visit where nature still thrives and where we can be a part of it.

Nature society is just a celebration of nature and living amongst the trees and stars. 

So we invite people – kids, adults and even seniors – to join us and explore nature and be a part of a great, passionate team.

How I Built A Nature Society with Over 450 Members

In 2005, I started a small hiking group and we would go around Arizona hiking the hills we grew up around. From there we promoted the “old-fashioned way” by word of mouth and we got shirts made that we always wore – everywhere we went. From there we used a Facebook page to build the group to over 450 members.

I don’t think my success is attributable to anything other than my passion. I truly love showing others – especially children – some of the amazing wonders that nature has to offer. It’s not really a secret, I’m just showing it to them and often times they get inspired in the same way that I do. It’s like a chain reaction. They just see what I see and fall in love with it. 

Outside of that experience, I just do what I can to make their time as fun as possible. I think the real challenge is just letting it be the way it is. Instead of trying to make it an experience of some kind or make it some sort of entertainment, it’s more about just letting it all be the way it is. The birds are alive, the wind is blowing and the trees are moving. Nature is alive and when you really see and get that, you understand what it’s all about. It’s just being there and not having any preconceived ideas of what has to happen. It’s like exploring a new world but not having a time limit. 

I just love that idea. I love that there is a new day ahead with plenty of things to discover and I just want everyone to now how fun it can be to find that for themselves. 

What’s Next

I plan on writing a book. I’ve actually been planning on writing many books for a long time. But this time I’m serious! 

Just like a short book with some illustrations I’ve done and some pictures I’ve taken over the years from hiking or backpacking. Where I live (Arizona) is such an incredible place and I’ve just seen some amazing things – the Colorado River at night is pure magic. 

So the book and also I’ve been working a friend of mine that studies boulders, rocks and geodes. She published a book recently and she has been helping me identify a lot of the terrain I’ve seen. I want to have some of her work in my book so we are collaborating now on that. 

There’s always something new to share and I want that to help inspire kids and adults to really get out there and explore.