When we got to Ashland just a few miles into Oregon, we met up with Jenn (and Gram), friends from the Outward Bound community. HUGE thanks to them, as Jenn, Alder and Josie generously hosted us in their house for a few days, where we organized and put together our resupply boxes for the next 450 some miles in Oregon. There are several small campgrounds and resorts very close to the trail in Oregon, where many thru hikers send themselves care packages since there are no adequate grocery stores near the trail to buy from.
We also were happy to be able to visit and hangout with our old friends Nick and Elizebeth while we were in town which was a great time as always.
First of all, I am no longer capable of wielding a wand of mascara. I learned this right away in my first attempts to feel, well, like a “lady” again. It took two showers and some turpentine to recover from that endeavor. It will have to wait until I’ve reincarnated a little longer before I arm myself again. Here are some other re-acclimation challenges I’ve encountered.
* I can’t deal with the sensory stimulation of having “stuff”. What the hell are you supposed to do with “stuff”?? Clean it? Touch it? Place it somewhere? It all wants my attention and frankly I’m just not interested..
* Driving. Forty miles per hour is not a natural speed for the body to be moving. What if I miss the water source? What if I run over a rattlesnake? I KNOW this sheet of plastic posing as metal protects me from NOTHING. It was sooo much safer on a steep slope in snowshoes. It was.
* Breathing air. Isn’t air supposed to have movement and some oxygen in it? I’ve completely forgotten how to utilize the indoor toxic cloud of weirdness as air.
* Illuminating the environment after sunset. Yes I remember how to operate a light switch. But I don’t remember why we do it. Artificial light is an electronic massage of spasmocity not conducive to sleep or general peacefulness.
* I’ve forgotten how to cook. Well, truthfully, I’ve never known how to cook, so I guess it’s not the fault of the wilderness.
* Dress. I’m a girl. I’m supposed to make an effort here. Warmth and comfort are not supposed to play into it. What the hell do girls wear? Really, that? Sigh..
* Jumping through appropriate hoops. Steps to steps to steps to steps.. All to accomplish one simple thing. What’s up with all the errands and paperwork? Just let me drive my car, or turn the electricity on, or get my money out of the bank.
* Relax. I’ve definitely gotten the relaxation response ass-slapped out of me. A week ago, relaxing meant a 15 mile day instead of a 23 mile day. Or only showering 3 times and cleaning my water filter and patching my tent and packaging peanut butter cups and calling ten people and arranging a ride back to the trailhead and doing laundry and buying breakfasts and ordering gear replacements and shaving off callous and mailing boxes and and and .. Oh.. Laying down for a minute or two..
* Communicating with many people in one day or God forbid, within one hour. There’s sooo many people here..
* Body hair. I know I’m supposed to do something about this. But my tweezers have seen only cactus spines and rotting toenails for the last six months.
* Pay bills. Oh yeah, I have to give them the green stuff. On some kind of predetermined schedule. Or they get mad.
* Calendars and time. What kind of abnormal abstraction is our society built around? Who can keep track of this stuff?
* Uncomfortable footwear. So I guess my Teva sandals aren’t appropriate for ALL occasions.. Especially with the little toe socks and gaiters. Sigh…
Coming “home” is wonderful but also tedious. Up next, the “Complete Cast of Characters”.
When people talk about the longest hikes in the world, they often think of the Appalachian Trail (AT).
Why wouldn’t they? It’s an American classic. But it’s not the only long one out there.
According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the longest hiking trail in the world is the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) on the West Coast of the United States. However, that title is only temporary as the Continental Divide Trail (CDT) will take the record once the trail is completed. I’m not entirely sure how they judge which trail is the longest for that record because the American Discovery Trail is longer. My guess is it’s because the ADT combines with paved roads from time to time.
This list of long-distance hiking trails does not include trails in the US. Please see the link below if you want to read about those.
More Via: Top 10 Longest Hiking Trails in the World.