Ten Days from the Beginning

I’ve repacked my backpack somewhere close to 50 times by now. Changed gear and went on smaller hikes to test it out. I’ve spent hours pouring over logistics and putting resupply boxes together. My mind is right. I just need to get there now.

Too much time before my start date leaves a lot of uncertainty. Thinking about all of the “what ifs” that could go wrong. Asking myself questions like, “Am I ready, ”or are you sure this is what you want?” Yes, I hear my inner monologue repeatedly say, “This is your year.”

As this last week approaches, I’m feeling confident that I’ve done what I can to prepare myself. I could have always exercised a little more. Made healthier food choices during the off-season but I know I’ll appreciate the extra weight I’ve put on when my body starts breaking down and the nights grow colder.

My focus for this last week is comforting the minds of loved ones. Reassuring them that I’ll be alright and that this is what I want. Of course, they have their doubts. Every time I decide I want to hike another trail, I get almost zero support, but this is what I want. My life and I’ll live it the way I want.

The Marine in me wants to attack the trail. Go at it hard and not give it an inch but I know that’s a fool’s errand. As the saying goes, “The mountain’s got its own way.” If I try to attack the trail, I’ll just get beaten down. A thru-hike is like a dance; you’ve got to roll with the rhythm that you’re given.

I’m ready to start. Every fiber of my being wants to be on the trail. I’ve dreamed of the CDT for so long. I’ve let it intimidate me, but now I’m feeling excited to walk the crown jewel of the Triple Crown. To see the majesty of its beauty and discover its mysteries.

Let’s do this!

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