Why I’m Walking 2,189 Miles in the Wilderness

maxresdefault           Short answer: Why not?

I will be flip flop thru hiking the AT beginning April 23rd. I start at Harper’s Ferry NOBO. I want to be in the New England states during the summer and hopefully catch the Autumn foliage in the Great Smoky Mountains during my SOBO leg. And since I’ve never traveled the Eastern US,  walking it just seems like the ultimate way to explore it.

I’m seeking what my unconditioned self actually looks like…

I think that anyone would agree that, literally, before we take our first breath coming into the world, the conditioning commences. We’re labeled with a name and gradually become the product of someone else’s beliefs and opinions. I’m hoping the trail will enable me to strip away the fat that years of conditioning have distorted. I hear that ‘the trail will provide’.

I’m hiking the AT because:

  • To strip myself of consumerism and to embrace only what is essential to thrive.
  • To hopefully restore my faith in me and humanity in general.
  • To explore the framework and logistics of a book idea that’s been a bee in my bonnet over the past few months regarding how the power of choice has impacted my life.
  • To be the first of my family and friends that has ever attempted a thru hike.
  • To learn how to embrace my environment no matter what the external circumstances.
  • To become more present in the moment and to be totally connected to each moment.
  • To possibly overcome my ‘lonerism’.
  • To possibly find true friends for the rest of my life.
  • To get a glimpse of what God’s Universe wants for me and from me.
  • To be amid the essence of Nature for 5+ months.
  • To make perseverance my foundation in all things.
  • To push myself beyond limits that I never knew I had.
  • And because I fucking love an adventurous challenge!

After I successfully complete the AT, I will:

  • Have a softer comfort zone that will have hardly any boundaries.
  • Be a true bad ass.
  • Be the first of my family & friends to accomplish a thru hike.
  • Start planning my PCT thru hike.
  • Will become a 2000 miler.
  • Will have incredible documented memories and pics that very few ever get to experience.
  • Will have experienced 14 new states that I’d never visited before.
  • My life will begin a new and exciting chapter.

If I give up on the trail:

  • Will have to face the shame that goes with quitting the trail.
  • Will regret not staying on the trail forever.
  • Will suffer a lack of self confidence and faith in myself.
  • Will have to face friends and family with excuses instead epic stories of accomplishment.
  • Will feel like a hokey half asser for years to come.

But for now, I’m embracing my fear of the unknown and choosing only the moment a hand.

Yep, I’m choosing the life a a smelly thru hiker, living out of my pack for 5+ months, walking 20+ miles a day and waking up each morning and doing it all over again.

What will I do after completing the trail? Quite honestly, I have no idea, and frankly it really doesn’t concern me at this moment. That’s way too far down the line to burden myself with. Whatever happens, well… it will just happen. That’s what I call freedom, and other’s will call it madness. So be it! Meanwhile, I’ve got 5 million goals (steps) to achieve in Nature.

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