Couples who want more than a quiet night at the movies have ample options in the Sacramento area. Venture out for a heart-pumping good time at these fun, local venues.
Hours: Mon to Fri – 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sat – 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sun – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Chase a little tail on a ride around the American River Bike Trail — otherwise known as the American River Parkway — it’s a fun 32 miles of paved wonderment. Except for the rare occasion when the river floods a small section the trail, it’s always ready and waiting for outdoor types. Rent a bike from Bicycles Plus to dodge the city riding and/or bike hauling. The most common loop from Bicycles Plus is around Lake Natoma, a rolling ride perfect for any kind of cyclist. It’s a great place to chase your date.
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Hours: Mon to Fri – 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Head to Davis and the University of California’s Davis Arboretum for a little more walking and observing. This is a 100-acre wood that Winnie the Pooh would greatly approve of. It is flat, winding, and a world-class repository of flora and fauna. There is no charge to enjoy the arboretum. Plan your date to coincide with one of the many tours and programs. If groups aren’t your choice, there is an interactive map available. While this sounds like just a walk in the woods, it is actually much more than that. The abundance of greenery and the accompanying signs and literature are likely to keep you very occupied. Along with the plant life, keep an eye out for wildlife as well, especially ducks. Picnic after you walk. You and your date will need the food and the rest.
Price: Weekend All Day Pass $34/Weekday All Day Pass $29/Weekend Afternoon Pass $29/ Weekday Afternoon Pass $25/check website for more pricing
Hours: daily – 9 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Take your date out on 140 miles of snowy terrain in the closest ski resort to the Bay Area. Although dogs aren’t allowed in the day lodge, take advantage of Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays to ski with your furry friends on a fun-loving, fast-paced powder date. Slow the pace down a bit with mini cross-country skiing lessons with the professionally trained instructors at Royal Gorge.
Price: Rentals available for various prices
Hours: Depend on snow pack
Going up Highway 50 from Royal Gorge, the closest cross-country resort is Camp Richardson. This beautiful spot is just across from the sparkling shores of Lake Tahoe. Take on miles of marked, groomed trails suitable for all levels of cross-country skiers and snow shoe enthusiasts. This area is easily accessible and just downright beautiful.
Price: Day Pass (weekdays after 3 pm and weekends) $18/Day Pass (weekdays before 3 pm) $12/Day Pass for 14 and younger $12/Monthly Pass $100/Ten Visit Pass $160
Hours: Mon to Fri – 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sat and Sun – 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Get a little sweaty whatever the weather on the indoor wall at Sacramento Pipeworks. This climbing gym is a haven for all levels of climbers with a full rental shop and services. Learn the ropes here from simple climbing techniques to high-altitude mountaineering. The climbing walls may look intimidating, but offer something for every climber. Rope up, climb on and impress your date.
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Charles is a freelance writer who has lived in the Sierra, halfway between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe, for the last 37 years. He retired from teaching after 36 years in 2010. He and his wife hike, kayak, cross country ski, snow shoe, ride mountain bikes and road bikes, year round. Wandering aimlessly, always looking for another place to explore, some place new, is high on the agenda. Charles enjoys all aspects of the great outdoors and writing about it to encourage others to explore as well. His work can be found at Examiner.com.