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[pct-l] Hiking Speed


You certainly make some good points... for most hiker's. One thing that
I have learned from long distance hiking over the years is that the
small percentage of hiker's that tend to jump ahead of the pack and
never let up are mostly looked upon as some sick, sick people (me
included, thank you). But, I would also asess that "our" definition of
sick is most likely very different than most peoples... and that's what
I like best about us! Of course, I've always been an open-minded person
and concerned hiker's like Brawney have even got me signed up for

I've found that most of these "driven" hiker's also tend to use a lot of
excuses to justify their (involuntary?) condition to keep moving such
as, "School starts on August 20th so I've got to get there", or "My wife
only gave me three months"... you name it, I've heard it. In my opinion
I'd say that maybe 100 percent of these justifications are just merily a
symptom of their driven condition and defying honesty is really hurting
them. Now, my fellow hiker's have at least got to give me credit for
being honest because I cut through the blab-blab of excuses by admitting
that I am driven... period.

And yes, you are right again because my employer (of 20 years) did most
graciously give me a 6 month leave-of-absence, yet I only spent a bit
over three and a half months on my thru-hike. My explaination (not
excuse) for this can only lead back to most folks definition of my
sickness, because as much as I thrive on new wilderness adventures I am
also one of those very rare people who actually loves my job. For gosh
sakes, as a wilderness camp woodshop teacher I teach kid's to carve and
build things for a living and I probably love this (don't tell the
boss!) as much as I love to hike, so I make no excuses for getting back
to "work" a little earlier than I had to. Besides, my employer has also
gained a better understanding of my condition over the years and is
willing to let me take a leave-of-absence whenever I like. It's a
win/win situation because when I'm on the job I'm just as driven as when
I'm on the trail, so they're getting a good deal when I don't know what
it means to give less than 200 percent, so they basically accomodate my

Well, it's Saturday and I can't go to work so maybe I'll just go for
a 10 mile run on the New River Trail today... without my backpack,
thank you!



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