Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Hike your own hike


"Hike your own hike" is a common phrase on the trail and one that Goose and I have come to respect. In short, the phrase refers to the fact that there are many different ways to hike the trail and everyone should simply hike the hike that suits them best. This means that some people hike fast with light packs and some hike slow with heavy packs. Some stop to look at every flower and some breeze past scenic views, barely turning their heads. Some spend many days in town and others go weeks without a break. And the list of differences goes on and on. You get the point.

Over the past 700 miles Goose and I have been learning what it means to hike our own hike. We've discovered that "hiking our own hike" is different for each of us. As we've both come to love this trail, we've come to love different things about it. Our biggest difference comes when deciding where to camp for the night. Ryan loves the shelters along the trail that provide a dry place to sleep and social interaction with other hikers. I've come to prefer stealth camping in the woods with less social interaction. We've found it a bit difficult to merge these ideals together.

And so we've started an experiment. On Sunday, the morning after celebrating our first 700 miles by eating Mexican and drinking margaritas, I continued hiking north out of Daleville while Ryan stayed behind and took a zero day with Charlie. Goose and I have officially begun hiking our own hike. Our paths may cross in the near future, or we may continue on at different paces, each enjoying the trail in our own way.

I'll keep you posted on what it is like to hike my own hike. I spent the last three nights camping deep in the woods and, while I loved every night, I will say that I miss Goose already.

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