Monday, July 28, 2008

Fear and Excitement

It's with a mixture of fear and excitement that I am writing today's post. For weeks, I have been debating whether to let anyone know (0utside of our family and staff) that Becky and I are taking off on another long hike. We are scheduled to start the Colorado Trail (479 miles from Denver to Durango) around the 18th of August.

First the excitement: We have the opportunity to take 5 weeks to hike one of the most beautiful trails in the world. The trail travels through 6 wilderness areas and 8 mountain ranges on it's way to Durango. We'll witness summer fading into fall as we hike. Most of all, we're going to experience the freedom and simplicity of life off the grid. Our days will be in tune with the rising and setting sun. Our comfort will be dictated by the weather and the mileage we have to cover. Our life will move away from grey area decisions to the black and white reality of life in the wilderness.

Now for the fear: At the beginning of any journey, there's always the nagging worry of problems that can arise. You know the discomforts you'll face: hunger, cold, heat, bugs, lightning and mileage. You just don't know what level each of these discomforts will rise to. My biggest concern right now (and the reason that I was hesitant to let anyone know we were going to hike the trail) is with my fitness.

Ever since we returned home from the Appalachian Trail (has it been two years already?!!) I have been haunted with pain in my right knee. As this trip grew nearer, I had two incidents with the knee that led me to getting an MRI. The MRI led me to having surgery to repair a torn meniscus. This was 3 weeks ago. I am just getting up to speed for walking the neighborhood and park, but I honestly have no clue what will happen when I subject it to a backpack, mountains and miles to cover every day. My doctor only chuckled when I asked him if he thought I would be ready to hike 500 miles 6 weeks after surgery.

That said, there's no way we're not going to give this a shot. I have often told people that the definition of adventure is setting out on a journey that you cannot predict the success or failure of. For Becky and I, this journey is an opportunity that we are so thankful for. We are ready for a time of introspection, inspiration and exhilaration. Without the difficulty, I don't think these factors can root themselves fully to your core. That's what wilderness travel is all about.

We invite you to travel along with us by following our trail journal. The link is: www.trailjournals.com/johnbecky. Then scroll down until you see the "2008 CT" Link on the left nav bar.

Note that we will update the journal every 5-8 days along the way, so keep checking back. I plan on journaling our thoughts, difficulties and (with some luck) victories. Our start date is around the 18th of August. We look forward to sharing our journey with you!

1 comment:

cabell tutwiler said...

If you have to come off the trail early, there are an infinite number of other adventures that you can have out there in the West. Throw a canoe on top of your car and take along a couple of paddles and lifejackets just in case.