24 comments on “Looking back

  1. I just filled out my application for the End to ender certificate too. I was checked out their website and realized it needed to be submitted by the end of the year! I didn’t know it goes into the Long Trail archives. That’s pretty bad ass!

    • Ah yeah! Hey, we’re both AT 2007 and LT 2012! We are so cool…

      I don’t know just how frequently people actually go and look through the archives, but I still think it’s pretty neat that we’re not a part of (official) history. Good stuff, eh?

  2. I just filled out my application for the End to ender certificate too. I was checked out their website and realized it needed to be submitted by the end of the year! I didn’t know it goes into the Long Trail archives. That’s pretty bad ass!

  3. The bad attitudes on a long hike seem to bum me out a bit. When we were hiking through the early party crowd on the AT me and my buddy were surprised to see these people self proclaiming their disdain for the trail, but they were still on it! I would tell people to get off and come back if you are that miserable. I see a long hike as an incredibly relaxing and freeing movement. 3 months after finishing the AT i have returned to daily life as well and it is a little more difficult to adapt to a “normal” life.

    Living in todays age is just another kind of challenge. Albeit much more mentally stressful than a long mileage day but I now try to relate anything that pops up in life to a moment on the trail. The traffic jams and low money are the same kind of speed bumps as not enough food and a wet sleeping bag. You’ll make it through fine and when you reach the end, you’ll look back and smile.

    keep on brother.

    http://elcaminoblues.blogspot.com/

    • Oh heck yeah, dude. I’ve had many run-ins with through hikers over the years where I’ve had a lot of trouble holding back from scolding them for complaining so much. The worst part of it for me is that for so many people who aren’t on the trail, the idea of a through hike is this huge thing– and to hear someone who is doing it complain so much without thinking of how they sound, must crush aspiring hikers’ dreams.

      On the other hand, it’s such a wonderful feeling to talk to a through hiker (like you, or a few of the others I saw this summer) who is still full of life and enthusiasm. It really reminds you why the hiker life is so rejuvenating for so many of us. And it’s why I still remember my AT hike so fondly. Even the grumpiest folks I hung out with were really happy about what they were doing.

      That LT hike was sooooo relaxing. I can’t wait to do it again πŸ™‚

  4. The bad attitudes on a long hike seem to bum me out a bit. When we were hiking through the early party crowd on the AT me and my buddy were surprised to see these people self proclaiming their disdain for the trail, but they were still on it! I would tell people to get off and come back if you are that miserable. I see a long hike as an incredibly relaxing and freeing movement. 3 months after finishing the AT i have returned to daily life as well and it is a little more difficult to adapt to a “normal” life.

    Living in todays age is just another kind of challenge. Albeit much more mentally stressful than a long mileage day but I now try to relate anything that pops up in life to a moment on the trail. The traffic jams and low money are the same kind of speed bumps as not enough food and a wet sleeping bag. You’ll make it through fine and when you reach the end, you’ll look back and smile.

    keep on brother.

    http://elcaminoblues.blogspot.com/

  5. Ryan,

    This was an insightful post. I have never done a long distance hike like you have done but I can still relate to the post hike depression. After my Rainier trip or even after a weekend in the Whites I find myself at a lull until I have the next hike to look forward to. I also agree that it is tough to find the balance between real life and the hiking life. Nice post!

    Grant

    • Hey Grant! I almost forgot to respond to this, but I like the comment. It’s nice to know it’s not just the long-term trips that leave one with that sense of nostalgia afterward. With all the research being written about in the past year or so about the science of why humans need time in nature, away from the hectic parts of society, it’s no wonder that you can feel drained upon returning. I’m feeling the need to get out on at least a weekend trip real soon… πŸ˜‰

  6. Ah yeah! Hey, we’re both AT 2007 and LT 2012! We are so cool…

    I don’t know just how frequently people actually go and look through the archives, but I still think it’s pretty neat that we’re not a part of (official) history. Good stuff, eh?

  7. Oh heck yeah, dude. I’ve had many run-ins with through hikers over the years where I’ve had a lot of trouble holding back from scolding them for complaining so much. The worst part of it for me is that for so many people who aren’t on the trail, the idea of a through hike is this huge thing– and to hear someone who is doing it complain so much without thinking of how they sound, must crush aspiring hikers’ dreams.

    On the other hand, it’s such a wonderful feeling to talk to a through hiker (like you, or a few of the others I saw this summer) who is still full of life and enthusiasm. It really reminds you why the hiker life is so rejuvenating for so many of us. And it’s why I still remember my AT hike so fondly. Even the grumpiest folks I hung out with were really happy about what they were doing.

    That LT hike was sooooo relaxing. I can’t wait to do it again πŸ™‚

  8. Ryan,

    This was an insightful post. I have never done a long distance hike like you have done but I can still relate to the post hike depression. After my Rainier trip or even after a weekend in the Whites I find myself at a lull until I have the next hike to look forward to. I also agree that it is tough to find the balance between real life and the hiking life. Nice post!

    Grant

  9. Hey Grant! I almost forgot to respond to this, but I like the comment. It’s nice to know it’s not just the long-term trips that leave one with that sense of nostalgia afterward. With all the research being written about in the past year or so about the science of why humans need time in nature, away from the hectic parts of society, it’s no wonder that you can feel drained upon returning. I’m feeling the need to get out on at least a weekend trip real soon… πŸ˜‰

  10. Ryan, I’m not sure if this will make you feel any better about your long hours of programming but I purchased your MSGT app for my iphone. Very well done I might add. Looking forward to getting out there next year for a thru-hike and will certainly bring the app along with me.

    • As a matter of fact, whenever I hear from someone who likes the apps, it does make the long hours feel that much more “worth it”. So thanks! Ideally, some day I’ll sell enough of them to make some kind of a living, but until then I’m happy enough to make others happy with them. Enjoy!

  11. Ryan, I’m not sure if this will make you feel any better about your long hours of programming but I purchased your MSGT app for my iphone. Very well done I might add. Looking forward to getting out there next year for a thru-hike and will certainly bring the app along with me.

  12. As a matter of fact, whenever I hear from someone who likes the apps, it does make the long hours feel that much more “worth it”. So thanks! Ideally, some day I’ll sell enough of them to make some kind of a living, but until then I’m happy enough to make others happy with them. Enjoy!

    • Haha. Thanks. I really came to enjoy that pink bandanna this summer. It’s got the outline of California, Oregon, and Washington, with a rough line of the PCT and all the major trail towns listed on it (and a “hiker to town” hitchhiking sign). They give out similar bandanas at each year’s PCT Kickoff, and the class of 2010 got pink. A lot of people griped about it, but I was thrilled πŸ™‚

      • Clearly a badge of honor and lifelong keepsake! Wear it in good health. Can’t have too many things around that remind us of our grand adventures.

        • Especially in Manly Pink! I agree that keepsakes that link to adventures (big and small) are pretty cool. Most of my hiking gear has a personality associated with how much I’ve used it, and it always feels nice to have that. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about!

  13. Haha. Thanks. I really came to enjoy that pink bandanna this summer. It’s got the outline of California, Oregon, and Washington, with a rough line of the PCT and all the major trail towns listed on it (and a “hiker to town” hitchhiking sign). They give out similar bandanas at each year’s PCT Kickoff, and the class of 2010 got pink. A lot of people griped about it, but I was thrilled πŸ™‚

  14. Clearly a badge of honor and lifelong keepsake! Wear it in good health. Can’t have too many things around that remind us of our grand adventures.

  15. Especially in Manly Pink! I agree that keepsakes that link to adventures (big and small) are pretty cool. Most of my hiking gear has a personality associated with how much I’ve used it, and it always feels nice to have that. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about!

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