Why I Hike

For my 40th birthday we went on a cruise. We had a fantastic time and met really great people. At the end we were tanned, relaxed and well fed.  But we weren’t particularly proud of what we had done. That is one of the reasons I hike, that sense of accomplishment. Here is why hiking is usually my first choice for a vacation.

The Accomplishment

“Easy robs you of proud.” This is one of my favorite sayings from Kacia Fitzgerald. She is a podcaster and just in general life encourager. My cruise was easy. Hiking is both physically and mentally hard. However, every view point and awesome campsite is just that much sweeter knowing you walked there yourself and carried everything you need.

The Places

If you haven’t seen the mountains of Colorado – they are beautiful. There are some views (not just of the peaks, but of the meadows and forests too!) you can only see by walking there.  There are boring days to any long hike, but there are also days when your mileage is slow just because you are constantly stopping to look around in wonder. Crawling out of your tent in the morning to watch the sunrise over a mountain lake is worth the pain to get there. 

Photo by John Bray on Unsplash

The People  

If no one told you, hikers are a fantastic group of people. They go out of their way to help you, even if you need help, or food, or just extra duct tape. There is an amazing bond between backpackers. No matter your age or background you have one very important thing in common, you are all trying to make it the next town before running out of food. But in all seriousness, I am incredibly appreciative of the friendships that form on trail with people I would have never interacted with much in the ‘real world.’

Our lifelong friend Mouth from the AT 2005

The Quiet

I am an enneagram one who has stopped drinking . This means I both need everything to go perfectly and am required to stop trying to control the world around me. Hiking quiets the need for control. Once you step out onto the trail, you can’t control mother nature, you can’t control where the trail goes or how often there is water, the only thing you can control is putting one foot in front of the other. You have to make do with what you have and endure/enjoy each day.  Hiking can become a moving meditation that quiets the mind and allows you to think.  


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