|20 Miles today!
I can't believe it but I am up to between 18-20 miles a day now! I feel like I got my trail legs under me. Things are going really well for me on the trail. There are so many funny stories out here....all of the A.T. hikers are like a whole other subculture of people. Everyone is in some type of transition in life and a lot of them come out on the trail to find themselves. The conversations around the fire are quite interesting at times! The pot smoking around the fire is also quite interesting.
Trail Name: Everyone one who is thru-hiking (GA - Maine) is usually given a trail name. You don't get to pick your trail name for it is usually given to you when you do something stupid or telling some type of story or even from things you have done before you got on the trail. I have a friend that received his trail name "Applicator" because he was walking down the trail one day and picked up what he thought to be chap stick and threw it at is friend and his friend said.. "dude..thats a tampon" other trail names I heard are "free hugs" ..."Bag Lady" "Mary Poppins" "Walgreens" "357" (I heard it is because he carries a 357 magnum in his backpack) ..nice "Brushstrokes" "Last Minute" and "Fish" are just to name a few.
My trail name is "Vagabond" I looked up the definition and here is what I got:
- 1: A person without a permanent home who moves from place to place.
- 2: A vagrant; a tramp.
- 3: A wanderer; a rover.
I think I will pick number 1 and 3. I don't feel homeless but I guess if you get technical I don't own a house or rent an apartment. I am homeless!...I just happen to have a website
A friend sent this to me.... I really resonated with me.... Maybe it is something that rocks your world too:
The Way We Grow
In God's word we're told to consider it "pure joy" when we're faced with challenges, trials, and obstacles, because they test our faith and make us stronger. The God who created you cares about your growth. And the way He has designed you to grow is through challenges.
When you work-out, your muscles grow stronger. When you challenge yourself mentally your brain grows new neurons. When you do hard things, you grow, both in character and in practical areas of competence.
This sounds like a radical argument. We're not just saying that hard things happen and that you can benefit from them. We're not just saying that you have the ability to do hard things. We're telling you that you should do hard things because it's the best and only way to experience true growth in your life.
But this isn't a new idea. We're not here to reinvent truth. But we do want to help you rediscover what has always been true - and one thing that has always been true is that in order to grow we must do hard things. We must challenge and stretch ourselves, step outside our comfort zones and do something difficult. It's how we've grown before, and it's the only way we'll grow for the rest of our lives.
No sacrifice..no Victory!
The last few days with the exception of today has been raining. Everyone yesterday came down into the town of Franklin, N.C. and got a room at the local hotels. By the end of the night there was a room to be found. They were all filled with hikers. I actually met a hiker and he offered his room that night so I didn't have to go back up on the trail again last night. Thanks "IBM"
Tonight I was picked up by a host friend I made through Facebook. He is the director of missions in the area and offered the Missions House for me to stay in. He took me out to eat at a local Italian Restaurant called "Gondola's" he said you never know when it is going to be open..he opens and closes whenever he wants...lol But thank you Jeff...you are the man!
TRAIL MAGIC! If you haven't heard of this before then keep reading: The term "trail magic" was coined by thru-hikers to describe small, unexpected, remarkable events that lifted a hiker's spirits and inspired awe or gratitude. "Trail magic" came in two forms: The magic created by nature, and the magic created by the kindness of strangers. Nature might offer magic in the glimpse of a black bear and her cubs or a hail storm that held off until the safety of a shelter was reached. Acts of kindness by strangers might include a family in a state park offering to share its picnic with a passing hiker, or a trail neighbor handing out cookies to hikers on a road walk. I have been on the receiving end of trail magic about 5 times so far from free hamburgers and hot dogs to host families to free hot chocolate. Here is a picture of one of the "Trail Angels"
There are a lot of injuries out here on the trail. Many hikers have gnarly blisters and sprained ankles/knees. It is so wierd to look at the picture of all of the hikers on the bus and think that out of all of the hikers on the bus maybe 4 will make it all of the way to Katadin. Hard figures seem to be hard to come by, but recently it seems upwards of 3000 people may attempt a thru-hike in a given year, and perhaps 15% make it.
Well I am hopping back up on the trail tomorrow morning. I am hiking to Bryson City where I will be meeting some family that I have there. Then I am headed to the Smokies where I hear it will be cold, icy, and snowy. I can't wait! "Life to the Fullest" Daren
Things are going well with the Expedition. Here are some articles that have been done over the past week:
The Expedition News:
The Dahlonega Nugget
Hungry For Adventure