The Importance of a Clear-Cut, Personal Reason

I’m certain that every thru-hiker has been asked why they do it.

I’m also certain that having a clear-cut, personal reason why is just as important as having the proper gear.

With only 29 more days before I start my SOBO thru-hike, I’ve got most of my gear in order, so now it’s time to shift my focus.

Why do I hike?

When each foot makes contact with the Earth, I feel grounded and connected to my surroundings.
A smile creeps onto my face.
My spirit is lifted.
I feel alive and free.

I am delighted by the possibilities in every hike, ready to accept and embrace what lies before me. I love how my mind is at peace while my body pushes up a steep incline.

As I step, I feel grateful to have my freedom, health, and wellness. I realize I may not always have these things so I vow to take care of my body and always appreciate my abilities.

Still moving forward, I focus on each of my senses to take in my surroundings.
I see the colors of a sunset.
I smell the aroma of a flower.
I hear the flow of a steam.
I feel the sun’s rays on my skin.
I taste the salt on my face.
And beyond these physical senses….
I feel energy flowing through me.
I sense that we are all in this together;
We are all connected.
Everything I do affects everything around me.

I want to do good and make the most of my life by
doing what I love, appreciating what I have, focusing on what’s important, and always striving to better myself.

Hiking is my zen

Hiking is my high

Hiking is the way to live my life to the fullest.

Goals while thru-hiking the AT:


  • Learn something new every day
  • Journal daily
  • Meditate daily


  • Stretch daily
  • Drink 4L water daily (at minimum)
  • Take care of my feet! Shoes off at every lunch break. Wash and dry at camp each night.
  • Wash hands before eating anything


  • Follow-up every negative comment or complaint with a positive
  • Smile often
  • Embrace every moment!

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