[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [at-l] Conversation with Datto / Choices

In a message dated 9/13/2000 6:22:16 PM Central Daylight Time, 
Debbie_Smith@Millipore.com writes:

<< I know I'm explaining this badly... >>

Not at all.  I related completely with a lot of what you said...feeling ready 
to have the hike be over (at least at times) during the last quarter of the 
trip...the incredulity I felt that so many people were actually leaving the 
trail in the northern part of it...the extreme hunger in Maine (I wasn't 
eating every 2 hours...but I WAS getting up in the middle of the night and 
having another full meal).

But I found that the exhaustion during that last stretch was much more mental 
and maybe emotional than physical.  Sure, I had bad days (physically).  In 
those cases, I just quit early and called it a short day (one of those ended 
early at Dizzy B's at Atwell Hill Road; that's how I remember her privy so 
well <g>).  But a half day of rest always helped immeasurably; and I felt 
very physically revived.

Rather, I found the last stretch to be mentally grueling.  I was READY to go 
home.  I missed my daughter horribly.  I was looking forward to the creature 
comforts of home again.

My observation was that most of those who quit in VT, NH, and ME were very 
physically able.  In fact, they were often the youngest, strongest, most fit 
people out there.  But (and no offense to the younger people on the list and 
who have thru-hiked), maybe -- in part -- because they were young, they 
didn't always possess the mental fortitude to gut it out when they were 
exhausted.  It was easier to quit for them than to go on -- despite the lure 
of Katahdin and what they had accomplished so far.  A wise hiker told me that 
it is sheer will power that gets most thru-hikers through Maine.  I believe 
it.  It's that kind of mental strength that one has to tap over those last 
few hundred miles.

Just my 2 cents.

-- Walkabout GA>ME '99
* From the AT-L |  Need help? http://www.backcountry.net/faq.html  *