Does the trail ever end?
People often ask me, “How was your trip?”. I don’t know what to tell them. “Great.”, just isn’t enough. It was more than one thing. It was fun, it was challenging, it was tiring, it was sad, it was frustrating, it was peaceful, it was painful, it was enriching, it was rewarding. It was life. Or at least it was all the things I hope life is supposed to be.
In the book at monument 78, I wrote “the trail never ends…”. I didn’t want it to end anyway. The PCT had become a part of me forever. I realized that this trip would probably come up again and again throughout my life (which is partly why I did this web site). But, I was afraid if it becoming “the good old days”, or “the trip of a lifetime”. If it was “the trip of a lifetime”, did that mean my life was over? I realized that the trip was more a state of mind than anything. That didn’t have to ever end. I hope it’s possible to bring that trail attitude to the rest of my life. There’s always a new adventure around the corner, there’s always something ahead waiting to be discovered or overcome. I hope I can remember to keep hiking, because it’s really easy to find a comfortable little lake and just stop. An old tree once said, “when you stop growing, you might as well be dead”. Does the trail ever end? Only when we stop living.