Monday, August 20, 2012

The View From The Top

If I tell you all I'm not a great hiker would you be surprised?

I thought not.

I'm a walker and a dancer and a weight lifter and a gardener, I am a great reader, but a hiker? No.

So you can imagine the tremor of fear in my chest when I heard part of our weekend in C-Ville was to be spent in the Shenandoah Mountains, walking along the Appalachian Trail for God's sake.  I quaked in my flipflops.

Various routes were discussed, mountains named, miles, as in 5, mentioned.  My eyes got bigger.  My still occasionally achy ankle ached.

I suggested we cater to the lowest common denominator, me, and find a trail that would be challenging but not one I would have to be airlifted off of.  With a freshly sprained ankle and a bruised ego.

It was done, Turk Mountain was our destination..  And with a brace on my ankle and backpacks full of water and chocolate,cheese,bread and cherries we hiked. And scrambled over rocks and hiked some more and sweated and swore and eventually some 2000 odd feet later we made it to the top.

I should be clear here, my three companions ran up the trail as lightly as a pack of mountain goats, I was the one, covered in sweat , ripe with expletives, who was looking for a private spot to curl up and cry.

But even I reached the peak and after clambering over some ginormous rocks sat and gazed outward and upward.

And the view was as promised. GG, as you can see, was totally in her element, I was totally out of my comfort zone. 

  But that's not such a bad thing. I often think if we listened only to the voices in our heads we'd never get out of bed in the morning.

So sometimes I listen to GG instead.

And dare to do things differently.

And my world gets bigger.


  1. Lovely photo. And you may find you love hiking, over time. That's been my experience. It is, after all, just a walk in the dirt.

  2. I love LPC's comment. And it's true. It is, after all, just a walk in the dirt. I'm pretty much a city kind of woman, but I love to get out and walk in the dirt and encourage my world to get bigger. Good for you.

  3. Just beautiful! I sometimes forget how much beauty there is in the state of VA...not really, but the two years we lived there were such a blur. Although I must say we did a lot of outdoor exploring considering I gave birth to our second child 5 weeks after moving to VA and then moved again, to CT when he was almost 2. We did a lot of many great bike paths in your area. your post makes me want to take a hike today...a little motivation is just what I needed.

  4. It's nice to have someone who gives us a gentle push every so often and helps us grow. What a view!

  5. You had me in awe when you said "weight lifter", but i think you can legitimately add "mountain climber" now and i feel like i need precial permission to comment any more. I thi n k you have joined th Big Girls. Very proud of you! Xoxo

  6. I won't let you sell yourself short... 2710 ft. NOW who's the mountain goat :-P ( so proud!)


  7. Hell-o Hiker. Our better selves always revealed by love.

  8. Have you read "A walk in the Woods" by Bill Bryson where he decides to hike the Appalachian trail from beginning to end? It's a joy, almost made me want to do it...almost. Now you can identify with him, how's the ankle?

  9. Good for you for stepping out of your comfort zone! We all need to do that from time to time :)

  10. This reminds me of the commercial (citi card, I think) where the girl climbs to the top of the cliff and stares at the world around her. It always makes me want to take up rock climbing or something else daring that would rock my world.

    You probably don't realize how much I love visiting you...I always get the feeling that you have such a joyful life. good people around you, fun times and happy adventures...

    Be safe and hope you're enjoying what's left of summer ~ xo Sarah

  11. wow, i love this post jane.

    quite proud of you!