Hitting the trail on Canada’s east coast – The Boston Globe

I’m planning to thru-hike this trail next August.  I have visited Newfoundland about a half-dozen times in the days when I used to enjoy long distance motorcycling.  There are so many biting insects there that we often celebrated riding in the cold rain, which kept the bugs down.  I am looking forward to the simplicity of walking, although there will be logistical challenges that a thru hiker will need to work through in order to complete the whole 165 mile hike.

Despite recognition by National Geographic as one of the world’s best adventure destinations, Newfoundland’s East Coast Trail remains virtually unknown to Americans.

Source: Hitting the trail on Canada’s east coast – The Boston Globe

 Our Top 10 Comments of the Week – The New York Times

5. It’s poetic and “empowering” and the stuff of memes to “leave the trail and make your own way,” but in real life, leaving the trail ends up on people lost, people walking into the wrong neighborhood, people taking the wrong exit from the highway. And that might be fun in movies. In real life, that’s tragedy. Be safe out there.— Said Ordaz-Moreno on The Times’s Facebook page, responding to an article about Geraldine Largay, a 66-year-old hiker who died from exposure nearly a month after wandering off the Appalachian Trail. This comment received 297 likes and 28 reader replies.

Here is the link to the NYTimes Facebook page that has hundreds of comments about Inchworm’s plight.  (scroll down a bit)

Here’s the May 26 Feature from the NYTimes:




Mental Prep for Hiking

I have been reading hiker journals lately, including my own. While reading from the Stoic literature, I came upon this quote, from ancient Greece, that captures the essence of my years of hiking and research. Substitute hike for life and you should be good to go. 
“Do not seek to have events happen as you want them to, but instead want them to happen as they do happen, and your life will go well”. -Epictetus, The Handbook (The Encheiridion)

Hiking the Appalachian Trail – Rodale Press- reblog from PMags.com

An overview of a seminal two-volume set about the early years of the Appalachian Trail. A compendium of some of the first 46 people to travel this storied path.

Source: Hiking the Appalachian Trail – Rodale Press | PMags.com


My comment to Mags:

I just happen to be re-reading the same Rodale Press AT set right now. I don’t have my own set, but my sister-in-law and hiker, V8 let me borrow her  books for a reread- my third time.  My favorite story is by Eric Ryback, then a high school student. In the late 70’s I started up a high school program here in Maine where we took disaffected students and put together a drop-out prevention program for them that included a week on the AT in Maine just before they entered high school, and then weekly group therapy, and an English class that featured Eric’s 72 pages of writing. We all went out out for canoeing, backpacking, and skiing trips back along the AT for one weekend outing a month. LLBean and Hurricane Island Outward Bound School assisted us with additional gear and occasional staff.  I needed all the help I could get.   Eventually I met Eric in CA at a PCT event where I was able to thank him for writing that chapter, inspiring me to get young people out into the wilderness and also fund my PCT thru hike completion medal. Thanks so much for an excellent post.  This September I am back out again,  guiding three novice hikers,  through Maine’s Hundred Mile Wilderness. One of them is in his 70’s.  It’s come full circle.  This series opened my eyes once.  I loved what I saw. Still do.

Fitness Goals Help !

I’m a sucker for fitness goals.

My most recent string began in 2013, when I latched onto Strava. screenshot 9Keeping track of miles became easier more meaningful, for myself, but as well as others, through Strava’s ability to link to our friends’ and families’ runs,  bike rides,  or swims.  Plus, you get a map of each or your outdoor activities. Then there is the data that’s getting added up and enumerated that sometimes ends up in the form of a little gold trophy next to Top Results with something like “Today you broke out a personal record  on the first mile up Rummy Ridge!”  If you have not discovered Strava, then I urge you to give it a try.  You are welcome to follow me, and I would do likewise.

In 2014, Carey Kish published an article about the idea of hiking a thousand miles in Maine in a calendar year. Check!  I had a great time that year, getting out and exploring the Maine back country. Better than the miles were the hundreds of hours I spent navigating along the rough surface of our corner of the USA  while I was getting myself reacquainted with the land of surprisingly unfettered boundaries.

For 2015, My oldest son Lincoln suggested I take on the goal of hiking, running, or biking an hour a day for a whole year.  Sold.  I did that.  My weight has stayed 10 pounds under the usual for over a year now.  I also cancelled my gym membership.

For 2016:  hike 1,000 and bike 1,000 miles in a calendar year.  That’s the deal now.  I have upped my daily average to 75 minutes a day, which is what I think I will need to make this happen.

Mr. Kish is now back from his second thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail with his Best Day Hikes Along the Maine Coast, where he identifies 50 of the best trails along the Atlantic Ocean.

50natib0003My wife and I heard Carey present on this book in Rockland a few weeks ago, where I bought my second copy ( I can’t remember who I lent my first copy to.) , and now Marcia has this idea to hike all 50.  We have already visited two new places nearby, Montville’s  Northeastern Headwaters Trail and Belfast’s  Little River Community Trail, and both lived up to Kish’s superlatives.

Wait!   Now there’s this easy way to measure fatigue and to gauge when to back off and take a low intensity workout or a rest day.  Have you heard about heart rate variability training?  I first learned about it this winter from Larry Starr, a local psychologist who uses it to reduce anxiety and stress in his clients.   Check out this recent article from Outside magazine: Is Your Heart Healthy? Ask Your Phone , it’s subtitled Heart-rate apps bring Olympic-caliber recovery to everyone.

Maybe your final takeaway from reading this post is to set a goal or two for this season’s hiking, biking, or swimming season. It has been working for me, keeps things fresh, and just maybe may result in better health, lower weight, or a finely tuned heart.