You should thru-hike the John Muir trail in 2013. THIS IS THE YEAR.
If you are a regular reader of this blog, or if you’ve stumbled onto this website for the first time, you are at least considering a big hike. Perhaps “considering” is too strong a word, maybe you’re just a bit curious.
Be bold—commit to the grand adventure!
Here are some reasons that 2013 should be the year:
First of all, every single person reading this blog will be older in 2014 than in 2013. Unless you’re a youngster, not even out of high school, it’s never going to be easier.
Do it while you can!
You might be thinking, “Hey, I’m twenty-two years-old. I’ve got plenty of hiking years ahead!” All true, but will you be as unencumbered in five years as you are now? I’m going to bet not.
For the rest of us, we can do our best to fight and stall the aging process, but we all know who’s going to win in the long run.
Second, permits are not going to get any easier in the future. Hiking is getting more and more popular (as is this trail), and the demand for permits is only going up. Who knows what changes are in store? (One example: the use of packers is already at risk.)
Example? Yosemite National Park is developing a plan to limit the numbers of people they allow through the gates. For the first time in history, Americans might drive to the park and find a “We’re Full—Go Away” sign. As the old song goes, “These are the good old days.”
Last, it will make you a better person, and isn’t that what New Year’s resolutions are about? Aren’t losing weight, stopping smoking, spending more time with the family, or any of the other goals we set for ourselves really just specific versions of the general goal, “I want to be a better person.”
You’ll be better, body and soul, when you take your last step on the trail, probably at the summit of Mount Whitney. The new you will be stronger, more confident, more focused, and—this one I will guarantee you—thinner! Nothing worth achieving is easy, but walking this trail is worth every step.
This is the year. For my part, I’ll see you at the Happy Isles trailhead the morning of Thursday, August 29th.
Good hiking, Ray