There is just something fantastic about following in real-time incredible human journeys. Just the knowing that someone is out there just doing it, while I am at work is so uplifting. The knowing can literally get me through a difficult day, helping me to keep up a positive attitude.
Last week, Halfmile connected me with Leslie, a solo southbound PCT hiker from Banff, Canada. Leslie started at the Canadian border August 1st. Yes, August 1st and she is now a couple hundred miles south of Tehachapi. I was lucky enough to share breakfast while hearing her personal story, and then jealously bid her farewell at our Tehachapi Pacific Crest Trail trail head. You can follow her on her trail journal at Banff Trail Trash. At the speed she is going she will be finishing at the Mexican border very soon.
Swami, an ultra long distance hiker from Australia is on his 12th long distance hike. When I met him on the PCT outside of Belden, CA in the middle of June, he was on his way to finishing long trail #9, the PCT, and on his way to the Continental Divide Trail, then planning to tackle the Appalachian Trail in late fall and early winter (all this year). What an honor and privilege that moment in time was for me. His spirit emulated kindness, passion, and a general love for walking and being among the natural world. Currently, Swami is hiking southbound on the AT and is at about mile 250 south of Mount Katahdin. His journal, The Hiking Life is witty and informative with beautiful photos and best of all he posts daily. I urge you all to stop by and post an encouraging comment as he is facing hurricane Sandy and the aftermath. Also, his website has a plethora of free in depth how tos on all things backpacking. Be sure visit The Hiking Life.