Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
Reading through these forums, I'm struck at all the different hiking styles, slow, fast, level, steep, thru-hiking, mountaineering, bushwhacking, solo, group, popular trails, solitary, on and on, and I have to say it ALL sounds amazingly fun in different ways. If I had more money and fewer commitments, I'd be tempted to tour around, meeting up with as many of you as possible and trying out all the different styles and activities. That's not going to happen, but if you do have the time and money, feel free to use my idea. And, definitely blog about it; I can live vicariously through you.
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
That would be a wonderful thing to be able to do. I've seen so many cool spots reading trip reports here. It'd be about as much fun as I can imagine being able to go hike with members here to some of their favorite places, and doing it their way.
I'd have to win a lotto or strike oil to do that, but hey, if that ever happens....
Thing is about our shared sport, vicarious is definitely in! I love hearing about everyone's adventures. I am getting older, 60, and budget challenged, so I enjoy sharing my love of outdoors with folks, but my own adventures are humble. I will likely never achieve those things I dream about, but hearing from compadres who reach the XXXX regions is good enough for me!
"Humble" is also a matter of perspective. You hike in Virginia and West Virginia, but to someone like me who hikes primarily in Ohio and Kentucky, your adventures are anything but humble! (I've sampled Shenanadoah, Grayson Highlands, and Dolly Sods, and it was me, not the trip, who was humbled.)
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
I'm with you Glenn. I'd have to drive about six hours to get to any decent elevation changes, either south to the bluffs of the Texas hill country, or north to the Ouachita (wash-i-tah) mountains of central Arkansas. There is a 20 mile trail half an hour from me, and for that, I feel truly blessed (though I haven't hiked it's entire length yet). Hiking and backpacking isn't a very popular sport in this area. Hunting is really the big thing. I'm lived in Texas most of my life, but I suspect I may be a PNWerner at heart.
Loc: Meadow Valley, CA
I'll be 60 next Fall, so that is no excuse. I did a 22 mile day a couple years ago, my biggest mileage day, beating one set a couple years before that at 18 miles. I live a five minute walk from FS land, so I have it made. A wilderness 5 miles away maybe, with the PCT running thru it. Duane
Don't get me wrong - I love my Ohio and Indiana trails, and I never feel like a "poser" when I'm backpacking on them. I only intended to point out that no one needs to feel humble about hiking their local trails (there's no such thing as a "bad" backpacking trip, in the same sense that "the worst day fishing is still better than the best day at work," which I read somewhere once.)
I think Harry Roberts once wrote that people shouldn't stay home thinking about the faraway wonderlands when there were local woods to hike, that "backpacking exists everywhere, and it's good everywhere."