Second Time Around, and the Trail Feels So Familiar
My goal in 2017 was to thru-hike the PCT. After only 650 miles, I decided to call it quits. There were a number of factors that played into my decision to get off trail but the biggest one was probably how much I missed Kauai. Oh, the fact that I walked through 650 miles of desert played into the decision, too. I hate the desert. When I hear the word desert, I immediately think of bloody boogers and stepping over rattlesnakes. Everything (including the grass) stabs you and puts holes in everything you own. The only thing that enabled me to actually make it through the desert was the amazing tramily I met along the way. I met some lifelong friends out there and I’ll always be grateful for that. So I hopped off trail and moved back home to Kauai. What a life.
Fast forward to 2018. I am sitting in Damascus, Va., at Appalachian Trail Days and am currently 470 miles into a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. After several months on Kauai, I began to realize how much I missed the Appalachian Trail and started planning a thru-hike. I started at Springer Mountain on April 6 and I am having the time of my life. I’ve encountered freezing temps, thunderstorms, bears, and forest fires thus far and I’m less than 500 miles in.
This is my second time hiking the AT and I have to say it’s easier this time around. Don’t get me wrong; this trail is no walk in the park. It’s hard as hell sometimes but this time around I know what to expect. My pack is lighter, lungs and legs are stronger, and my mind knows what it takes to get this trail done now. Knowing what’s ahead makes preparing for sections much easier. I’m also taking advantage of many of the hostels along the way that I missed out on last time.
If you’ve read any of my previous blog posts, you’ve noticed that I’m not much of a writer. I rarely update this blog because once I get into towns I find it hard to put into words what’s actually going through my mind. This time around, I’m trying a different medium. I’m vlogging this entire thru-hike. I find it’s much easier to speak into a microphone than to type. The viewer also gets to see and experience all the amazing stuff I do. If you would like to follow my adventure, head over to YouTube and do a search for Grizzle Gear. Watch an episode or two and if you like what you see, hit the subscribe button then press share.
I hope you all decide to check out the channel and follow along as I complete this epic adventure one more time.
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