Finishing any multiple day walk ramps my excitement up a notch. On last days, I have always acted like a horse getting closer to the barn, often speeding up and taking on longer mileage days as the idea of coming home catches fire inside of me. I like being in the outdoors, and this trip has only confirmed my desire to get back somewhere in Maine for another longer winter walk in 2015.
Several things stand out about these past few days:
First, we had no set itinerary to stick to- something that is difficult for me. I’m goal oriented, however a fresh goal is embracing improvisation. If you want to explore how improvisation can improve your outlook on the inevitable changes in life- here it is-Improv Wisdom: Don’t Prepare, Just Show Up by Patricia Ryan Madson. Thanks to Brad Purdy for bringing me this information!
There was serious democracy in action out here. By the third day, no one had to talk about what to do – cutting firewood, splitting it, fetching water, cooking, washing up. It just got done. Fine men around me, all. The best example of this was our “rest day” where each person was free to walk all day on a day hike, or to lay around inside the sleeping bags and read and sleep.
I learned that cold hands are inevitable when it gets below zero and there is close handwork to do, like packing toboggans, and cinching ropes.
Despite being one of the top snowmobiling capitals of Maine, Jackman is still far away from civilization. We were surprised to see just a half dozen sleds on the Pond. Consider midweek vacations if you want to avoid crowds.
Old stuff works. Old snowshoes, traditional cotton tents, mukluks, axes, saws.
Just yesterday I read a interesting story that came to me from my stove/fire guru and proprietor of Four Dog Stove, Don Kivelus. Fresh from Minnesota Public Radio, it’s about one man’s shift from cold to warm winter camping–>click on the hotlink below for a superb article about another guy doing just what we what we did.
Here’s one reason why ( from the MPR article)!