Saturday, October 5, 2013

ALDHA west

   Before planning for the CDT, I thought that hiking the trail was just part of the Triple Crown. I really did not conceive the entire concept for which the Triple Crown really meant. Soon into the planning stages though, I soon realized that the CDT was a project all of its own. Like the AT was so different than the PCT, the CDT was so different of both the others.

   Soon I was deep into my hike and things became a bit more realistic. The CDT was a GRAND Adventure, and those who tackle it are rewarded substantially with something more humbling than a award can give. It was a sense of great accomplishment.

  And that is what part of the Triple Crown Award came to be for me. It was not bragging rights or a look at me moment. It was becoming part of a family. Something that I missed in my quest for the highly sought after plaque.

  For me, getting on the trail, and continuing a thru-hike has always been hard, not because of physical or mental fatigue, but because I had a family at home, who needed me. My friends and co-workers sometimes could never understand, as well as a lot of my family members. But what a lot of people missed, was how I improved with each endeavor.

 It was at the moment of being given my Award, that I realized  I was being accepted into a new family, one that I have known for quite some time, but really had not understood. They understood me, my passions, and greeted me with open arms.

  The weekend was great! I brought my youngest daughter Aaren, and was reunited with many trail pals. I met up with a few, whom we been watching each other from a far, but the biggest moment for me was Scott Williamson, giving a brief history of our friendship, and speaking on my behalf while I received my Award. He has always been such a good friend and I was honored.

  While I thought that completing the CDT and receiving a Triple Crown was what it was all about, I now have a humble appreciation in being part of such a wonderful trail family...