The most popular hiking memoirs (print, online or eBook) today have a certain style that is apparently popular.
It is not enough to walk a well maintained trail with ample resources such as good books, maps, electronic apps, and other resources. Or merely immerse yourself in the beauty of the mountains, canyons and woods for days or even weeks on end.
No. The journeys must reflect the struggle. How hard it is. The challenge. The hunger. The cold. The heat. The plagues of locust apparently.
Everything. Is. Epic.
Perhaps I am missing something.
Maybe every outdoor journey really is an epic. Perhaps I am not just seeing this aspect of being outdoors?
So, I am going to make an attempt at this type of EPIC ADVENTURE.
Maybe I’ll see it is not enough to enjoy the outdoors…but I need to make my own epic journey of self?
The Chill Cool of Autumn: My Epic Journey Of Self
It was a chill Fall day. A day that portends the kind of adventure I would face. Solo, the world would be cruel. But I am strong. I will face the challenges the trail will send my way. I will conquer the trail.
I hoisted my pack on my shoulders. The nylon material seemed as part of my body as an arm or leg. It was a constant companion on my journeys.
As I walked through the leaf strewn trail, I thought of the desolation I was walking through. The beautiful leaves now decaying on the ground. Fleeting joy and beauty a few weeks ago. Now gone.
I continued to walk the trail. The hard climb challenged me. My muscles strained as I reached the ridge. The sweat on my shirt reminded me of the upcoming chill of the coming winter.
The rocks poked and prodded. The branches brushed against me. I came into a clearing. The warm sun brought forth new life. I was one with the Earth.
I walked off-trail along the ridge. The ridge led forth into the distance. Much like the journey I was taking. One step at a time I would reach the summit. One step at a time I would complete the journey.
The summit view was before me. I could see far into the distance. I could see places I would go in the days to come. I could see potential. A potential in my own life as well as the journey.
I continued on. Met up with the trail again.
I walked to a junction. The junction was merely marked as trails rather than THE TRAIL. Which one was THE trail? Much like my life, a decision had to be made. Which path to follow? The path where I would triumph in victory over the trail? Or the path that would lead to the wrong way and hardship? I pulled out my map. I pulled out my compass. I pulled out my databook. I pulled out my guidebook. I pulled out my iPhone. I pulled out my GPS. I struggled with a 3G connection and tweeted to Hikers for insight. I barely had enough bandwidth to post a selfie with the junction.
I was seeking guidance.
The world answered.
I was guided.
Soon I made the decision which path to follow. I followed the path of my salvation. I followed the correct trail. I was back on The Trail.
Camp was made. It was cold that night. In the vast wilderness I was alone.
Only the skills I’ve learned over thousands of miles of hiking kept me warm. Fed. Safe. Alive.
I woke up. I had triumphed over the dark and cruel night.
I was down to merely oatmeal, Nido, dried fruit and nuts for the five-mile hike to the trailhead. My hunger was intense. The stomach was growling for attention. Would I be able to complete the journey?
I made it to the road. I had left the wilderness.
I am independent. Self contained. Strong.
I managed to get a 4G connection.
Wonder how my GoFundMe campaign is doing?
#livingauthentically #neverstopexploring #walkingwithbeauty #blessed #hashbrownsareawesome #strong #namaste #epic #mindfulandmeaningful #independent #pushinglimits #brave #lifeistobelivednotsurvived #youshouldallbesolucky
Hmm..I don’t think this is quite for me. I’ll just stick to simply being outside and enjoying a cuppa Joe while breaking camp in the morning. The Epic Journey of Self (TM) is too tiring. 🙂
UPDATE: And this New York Times article that came out today (11/6/) seems rather apropos!
(And thanks for the suggestion of more #Hashtags folks! :D)