September 6th, 2021
Mile Marker: 2642.2
Miles Hiked Today: 25
We slept in till 6 am and had a colorful sunrise shining through the trees. It was going to be another wonderful day.
There wasn’t any need to rush. We knew we were going to make our deadline, we knew we only needed to do 25 miles, it was all about enjoying the finish.
We set out and the trail put us immediately on another ridge looking out into the stunning Washington mountains. It was yet again, jaw dropping. I felt lucky that we didn’t have rain or fog completely masking our views. We were able to see far out into the distance.
At one point in the morning I found myself in a rolling cloud that was passing over the mountain and dissipating into the sky.
I felt like I was in a dream. That everything I was seeing was a backdrop, that it wasn’t real.
I let the sun warm my red frosted cheeks from the cold wind and took a deep breath.
I’m coming to the end of my journey and I couldn’t be more thankful for all that I have experienced.
Mid morning Journey had asked me what was something new I had learned about myself or what was reaffirmed. I pondered this for a while and once again now while writing this.
I felt like I had this new sense of self. Similar to what I did on the AT but different. Where I learned how to appreciate myself and all that I have to offer. That I am not like everyone else and that is okay.
In a big way, I feel like I am branching out with confidence into who I want to be. I don’t feel so anxious any more.
Coming home amid covid from Peace Corps left me in this little bubble. Where I was relatively comfortable but my soul was starving.
Being out here forced me to be uncomfortable.
It forced me to be quiet.
It forced me to think.
There is the famous quote by John Muir “And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.”
That is what I felt like happened to me. I went through turmoil and grief and love and laughter. I thought hard on issues and I found utter joy.
I want to live this life with intention and purpose. I’m not sure exactly where I am going to go next which can be unnerving for some, but I am excited to see where life takes me. I feel more in control of my life now than I did a year ago coming home and that is a really good feeling.
A really good feeling.
We hit Harts Pass after about 7 miles in, this was the area that we would be walking back to in a couple days for John (Peace Corps friend) to pick us up.
Since we cannot go into Canada, we have to back track 30 miles to this pass where a car can take us where we need to go.
We spent majority of the day seeing hikers hiking southbound who had reached the Canadian border already. All of us congratulating each other; for finishing or about to finish. It was a joyous moment with each person.
Around lunch we ended up taking two hours eating and napping until we felt energized enough to continue on.
I still couldn’t get over why 25 felt so much easier than before. We felt like we had all the time in the world.
We came to a pass for dinner and then us four hiked on to our campsite for the night.
It’s our last night before hitting the border tomorrow. Only 11 miles!
I’m not sure what emotions will hit. To be honest, I don’t think it will hit me until I am driving away from the trail with John.
The emotion I am mostly feeling is excitement. I can’t believe it’s already here. I can’t believe it is freaking September!
Iz and Oz