Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Appalachian Trail Thru Hiker Dreamin'

Me, AT Dreamin'
So, for a long time I've had a number of dreams...I would love to experience world peace, have a lot of money, free time to do good and love. But I have to say that the thing that makes me stare out the window, read magazines and sigh is the dream of travel, either by foot, car, camel, elephant or boat.  I'd like to see far off lands, ancient lands, pyramids and alligators.  I'd like to jump out of my car and follow that creek bed into the woods to see where it goes.  I'd like to hike the AT, JMT, PCT and parts of the FT.  I'd like to sleep in Wal Mart parking lots in my car on the way to cool places...the spirit of a gypsy lives inside this mild-mannered almost 60 year old.

Carla R & Judy: Solo Hikers
A friend has kindly engaged me in a project that she is starting.  She had developed a course to teach women how to thru hike the AT by themselves.  Some of the biggest roadblocks for women who desire to hike are all centered around security and safety.  My friend, Carla Robertson, hiked the AT in 2009 all by her lonesome.  Solo, one, not relying on a man and survived.  In fact, based on what a strong, sensitive and intuitive woman she is, she flourished on her solo thru hike.  Instead of allowing fear to minimize her and make her shrink into herself; she found, from what I can surmise, peace, purpose and a strong sense of self.  What a great outcome, right?!!!

So, she has kindly asked me to help out with gear knowledge and old fart women hiker stuff.  Little does she know that I am going to be a sponge.  I'm going to soak up everything that I can because...I STILL want to hike by myself.  What youngsters who are staring the world in the face don't realize is that as you acquire knowledge, understanding and grace while aging, you also discover that the world is scary!  Things happen! What if I fall and I can't get up.  I need some courage.  So, I'm going to listen, take notes and take no prisoners.  Someday soon, maybe next year who knows...it'll be my time. 

Photo Credit: Barb Drabic

So, Ms Robertson...thank you very much.  And for those of you considering, dreaming nay its just a tickle in the back of your brain crazy idea to do things on  your own, to hike, to fly, to travel...well here is the ground breaking course for you to consider taking.  

Wild and White Blazing

ADDENDUM:  Carla points out in the comments below and I concur that this course is for ANY woman who desires to hike.  Although, the course is designed to help you plan an AT hike, things you learn I THINK will be transferable to other trails.  However you want to hike, whether it be solo, with a partner or a group, Carla's class will be an invaluable resource as you prepare.