We’re Outside! Level Up Outdoor Adventures With Global Nomad Kellee Edwards
Brought To You By Flonase
Spring has sprung—and we’re ready to be outside again.
It’s time to tap into our adventurous side. We’re open to new experiences and places and rising to the challenge of stepping outside of our comfort zones. Even though the great outdoors may be calling, suffering from allergy symptoms like nasal congestion, sneezing, runny nose and itchy and watery eyes can hinder the adventure.
Flonase provides long-lasting 24-hour relief from allergens like pollen and other irritants.
To help us create our guide to the best outdoor excursions, we sought outdoor adventure expert Kellee Edwards—host of the Travel Channel’s Mysterious Islands (the first Black woman to host her own travel series). Growing up in San Bernardino, California, via Chicago’s South Side, Edwards explored the outdoors with her family and discovered her passion for adventure.
About her love for the great outdoors, Edwards revealed, “For me, it was all an adventure. As a child, I’m not thinking we are missing out on anything by any means. I’m just being exposed to all these things that I never knew existed,” she says. “I realized that I love being outside. It just does something for my spirit. And as I got older, it never stopped.”
The brilliant global nomad has carved her niche as a travel and adventure journalist by continuing to challenge herself and learn new skills.
Dubbed “The Most Interesting Woman in the World” by Outside Magazine, the licensed pilot and advanced open-water scuba diver has explored over 50 countries by land, air and sea.
Despite her daring disposition, fear is a part of the process. “Everyone thinks that I’m fearless,” Edwards says. “I’m not fearless. I just choose to fear less. I do everything scared. But once I’ve done it, it’s like, oh shoot, I survived. That was awesome!”
Allergies and the Great Outdoors
Edwards navigates the world her way despite suffering from allergies.
“Everybody thinks I’m superwoman, but there is a little bit of kryptonite—pollen,” she says. “I deal with congestion in my sinuses primarily. Not being able to breathe through my nose is my Achilles heel.”
As an outdoor enthusiast, allergies come with the territory.
“I like being in the forest. I like being in the jungle. And what does that come with it? A lot of flora and fauna—plants everywhere,” Edwards says. “But I’ve never allowed that to stop me from enjoying the outdoors.”
To keep her allergies in check, the travel maverick packs Flonase, along with her everyday travel essentials, so she can beat nasal congestion, sneezing and itchy, watery eyes no matter where on the globe she’s traveling to.
“There are some things that stay in my pack. It’s my Flonase, my sunscreen, my water filter, my chapstick and my Garmin inReach because if anything happens, I can hit that SOS button, and somebody’s coming to get me,” she said. “If these allergies act up, I can quickly hit myself with Flonase in the nose. [It provides] relief of my nasal passages opening up.”
Kellee’s Guide to Going Outside
We sat down with Edwards to discuss her personal recommendations for the best outdoor excursions. Whether you want to challenge yourself or want something more laid back—the expert has something for everyone.
Glamping is an elevated camping experience with luxury amenities that allows city dwellers to enjoy the great outdoors.
“Especially for Black women, I want us to be outside. And if we must go glamping, so be it,” Edwards shared. “If I can’t get you to camp and sleep in a sleeping bag on the floor, how about we go glamping?”
Some amenities a newbie can find while glamping includes on-site dining, housekeeping, and, best of all—your own bathroom. No pitching tents or heavy lifting is required.
“I have had the most amazing experience glamping on a safari in Kenya. It was luxurious. I had elephants outside my tent and giraffes. It was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen in my life—to be able to see lions, elephants, giraffes, hippopotami and cheetahs. And after being out under the African sun all day and returning to a luxury glamping tent—ugh, you can’t beat it.”
Elewana Tortilis Camp Amboseli (Kenya)
Under Canvas (United States)
Hiking is one of the global diva’s favorite activities.
“I love hiking. For me, it just does something to my spirit. Walking outside is just healthy and good for you,” she says. “You can see so many different landscapes just by exploring the terrain around you. You can be in the mountains. You can be in the desert. You can hike through waterfalls. It’s the one outdoor activity that keeps on giving, and you never know what you can see.”
Her perfect hike would involve a nice shady route with a big finish. “I love a great trail with a lot of tree coverage from 3-10 miles. I love a trail that has a destination to reach, like a waterfall. Because that motivates you to keep going, to know that at the end of the trail, there will be some kind of reward for that incline that kicked your butt.”
Edwards recommends the AllTrails mobile app to find trails near you and help navigate your route. “You can go out with a guide if you want, but I use an app called AllTrails, and there are over 4,000 trails on this app.”
Kayaking is pretty beginner-friendly and accessible to most, Edwards says.
“I love kayaking! First, it’s a great upper-body workout. Second, it’s tough to tip over in a kayak. Even if you can’t swim, you’re in a life vest, no matter what. You just have to paddle! It’s a way to explore the water without being in it, and you can see so many cool things,” Edwards says.
City dwellers can enjoy the activity without going out of their way to enjoy the water. You can find a kayaking adventure in almost every city from D.C. to Chicago.
“For people who aren’t necessarily comfortable kayaking in a river or a lake outdoors, I love kayaking in cities. I love kayaking in Chicago. I love kayaking in New York. I love kayaking in Washington, D.C., because you can do this on the Potomac, you can do this on the Chicago River, you can do this on the Hudson. And you’re still in that cityscape, so you can drop your kayak and be back in your Uber or your car within 10 minutes. But you still connect with nature by being on a body of water. And I love kayaking for that.”
Canyoneering (or canyoning)
Edwards revealed that canyoneering would be an excellent start for those seeking a challenge.
“Canyoneering is the next step to pushing yourself for an outdoor adventure. You are in the mountains between canyons, canyon slots, and mountains. I think it is so cool.”
Edwards went canyoneering in Switzerland, “which was nuts,” and Utah, “which was beautiful.”
“It’s a very physical thing to do,” she explains. “A guide up top is lowering you down on a rope. And a lot of times, you’re lowering yourself down too; you have to control it yourself with your own grip and body weight.”
For folks who are afraid of heights, the global nomad shared, “You know I’m afraid of heights, right?”
Beginners are welcome—you don’t have to be experienced to try canyoneering.
“There are various levels of it, but I recommend people try it because it is an extra level of adventure that is really exciting at the end of the day once you get down on the ground.”
Ready to Explore
Edwards is all about inspiring people to explore the outdoors.
“I just want people to experience the world. You don’t have to go to extremes to do so. Nature is in your backyard. You can find nature in the city. That’s all you need,” she says.
Whether Edwards is dog-sledding in Alaska’s remote wilderness or summiting Oregon’s Mt. Hood—she stays ready to take on her next adventure. With Flonase, nasal congestion and itchy, watery eyes don’t get in the way of her adventurous spirit.
With her expert guidance, we’re prepared to take on the elements. Add Flonase to your travel kit for multi-symptom allergy relief wherever your next adventure takes you. We’ll see you outside.
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