Thursday, December 22, 2011


Pulled from The New Nomads blog


  1. Confuse loved ones
  2. Look for your purpose in life through solitude in nature.
  3. Get time off work without having to feign illness
  4. Puff out a flat butt
  5. Lose weight
  6. Gain respect and awe from others without having to really do anything other than walk around
  7. Make people miss you
  8. Make people worry about you
  9. Bond with strangers you wouldn’t ordinarily even say hello to in passing
  10. Good excuse to not bathe
  11. Good excuse to talk and sing out loud to oneself
  12. Let bad hair color grow out
  13. Learn to value the little things in life
  14. Only have little things in life
  15. Learn to value and respect nature
  16. Have mystical experiences
  17. Easy to bluff mystical experiences to those at home
  18. Easy way to disappear with secret lover
  19. Meet soulmate
  20. Unload soulmate
  21. Wean yourself away from the poisoned nipple of modern media
  22. Quality time with recently purchased $500 gadget
  23. Hide from debt collectors, ex-wives, and angry roommates
  24. Keep your adult children from moving back in with you
  25. Put off adulthood
  26. Create more empathy with the homeless
  27. Learn to accept help from others
  28. Learn how to balance a pack on your head
  29. Develop an admirable tolerance for wet and cold legs
  30. Finally get to listen to a song all the way through to the end
  31. Create your own religion
  32. Make yourself qualified to write a book
  33. Join interesting community of people who are just as antisocial as you are
  34. Interesting blog topic
  35. Find Yourself
  36. Find God
  37. Find cool things left behind by other hikers
  38. Make peace with the voices in your head
  39. Avoid being constantly tempted by ice cream
  40. Learn to simplify
  41. Learn how complex protecting a bag of M & M’s can be
  42. Be judged not by the amount of money you make, but by the weight on your back
  43. People just have to take your word for it when you tell them where you are
  44. Become intoxicated with beauty
  45. Become intoxicated with exhaustion
  46. Become intoxicated by idle thoughts of hot water
  47. Create a 3rd use for the Power Ranger costume
  48. No reason
  49. Nothing better to do
  50. Empty nesting
  51. Avoiding nesting
  52. Way to stretch unemployment check
  53. Raise money for charity
  54. Become a charity
  55. Squatting is good for developing balance
  56. Break Facebook addiction
  57. Release from the claws of culture
  58. Ample meditation time
  59. Orgy of tree hugging
  60. Excuse to wear nothing but tights
  61. Breathe clean air
  62. Create natural dreadlocks
  63. “hobo” = “athlete”
  64. Inspire excitement over 10 for $1 ramen noodles
  65. Belong to the earth
  66. Belong to nothing
  67. Belong to whoever has chocolate
  68. Discover yet another 10 uses for duct tape
  69. Save gas
  70. Pay no utilities
  71. Become more in tune with a natural existence
  72. Able to not look at yourself in the mirror for many months
  73. Restore feeling of love for life
  74. Learn how to eat wild plants without dying
  75. Great opportunity to practice otherwise useless skills learned at scout camp
  76. Low exposure to electromagnetic fields
  77. No chance of drunk texting anyone
  78. Confront and overcome fears of the dark, animals, death, storms, and loneliness
  79. Fun
  80. Acquire an unflattering nickname based on a stranger’s misperception of your primary qualities
  81. Develop some mighty fine looking legs
  82. Get that look in your eyes
  83. Give your mother an actually real reason to worry about you
  84. Learn to live high on convenience store fare
  85. You can completely change your personality and blame it on “What happened out there”
  86. Great excuse to avoid commitment in relationships
  87. Learn the distinctions between fine granolas
  88. Eat absolutely whatever you want with no ill effect
  89. Can practice many variations on the lyrics of “Tom’s Diner”
  90. Acquire stories to share for a long long time
  91. Justify purchase of expensive camera
  92. Take your mind off anything challenging going on in your life
  93. Learn perseverance
  94. Potential for pranks on other hikers are varied and numerous and almost always invite use of your Diablo voice
  95. See men in kilts without going to Scotland
  96. Redefine cleanliness, hunger, and entertainment for yourself
  97. Gape in awe at the amount of useless things you own when you return home
  98. Learn to sink into a night sky
  99. Gain survival confidence
  100. Get a groove in your move


101. Get SANE

Monday, February 7, 2011

Another Hiker's Dream

One of the more famed trail personalities on the PCT, is planning to do a through hike of the Appalachian Trail. Scott "Squatch" Herriott, of "Walk" fame, and "Sidetrails" fame has decided to attack the AT, with the intent of generating another trail documentary of great humor, and beautiful trail culture.

Take a look at his kickstarter website to read a little more about it.

And if you have not seen any of his films, and would like to "rofl", I suggest you pick up any of his fine films
Read up on him here:
Or purchase some of his documentaries:

Apricots and Psycho are in one of the sidetrails documentaries... and Psycho hiked with many of the people featured in the walkpct documentaries.

Seriously folks, this man is brilliant, plus he's tall. .... And if you want to conquer the world someday, it would be a good idea to have a connection to this man.
Oh, and for the ladies, he's a sexy sexy man with delicious hiker calves.

Monday, January 31, 2011

On “Alexander Supertramp” or Christopher McCandless

"So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more dangerous to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun."
— Chris McCandless



I sat at Vermilion Valley Resort talking with a John Muir Trail hiker. We have met many strangers along the way who took interest in our attempt at through hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. However, his interest in our hike was fresh and genuine. He asked the usual questions of "when did you start?", "how many miles a day?", etc. However, his questions tended to get a little more probing. Finding myself nearing the final day of our hike, I spent time talking with him while he was still in the early stages of his JMT through hike. In fact, he was fairly new to long distance backpacking. As such, he was full of questions for us. I had been thinking about my hike, my experiences, and my overall impression of a PCT through hike, and his questions helped me process my hike just a little more thoroughly.  I, too, was interested in his hike. When we came full circle to "where it all started," I asked him what inspired him to hike the JMT. His motivations were similar to many through hikers, but he also stated that he was very inspired by the book (and movie) "Into the Wild." For those who are unaware of this book, I highly recommend reading it (or watching the movie, if you need instant gratification). The story documents Christopher McCandless' life and controversial death. After the discovery of his body, public opinion was (and still remains) heavily divided. Many people feel that Chris' decisions were immature, unrealistic, and ultimately life ending.


I do not wish to comment on his decisions, as there is already enough unnecessary debate regarding that. I do, however, wish to talk about Chris and why I find him to be such an inspiration. From my understanding, Chris had a dream, and he did whatever it took to pursue that dream. I believe that the greatest problem in life is dreams that never become actualized. Our spirits die when we fail to have direction. We need a carrot at the end of the stick. Often times we find ourselves going through life with too many sticks and not enough carrots, which lends us to a life without direction. At some point in our life, we just might find the stick which actually has a carrot at the end of it; a dream or goal that we desire. If we choose to pursue that "dream realized," we will have a direction to move. It is important that at some point we actually get the carrot – a "dream actualized." It is equally detrimental to have never realized a dream or actualized a dream.


Chris did whatever it took to actualize his dream, leading a wandering life taking sacrifices in social connection to achieve his ultimate goal of going "into the wild" in Alaska. I am inspired by Chris because of his severe focus on attaining his dream. It seems he went through life chasing his dreams, making decisions which ultimately led him to his big dream. I find Chris to be an inspiration because of his unrelenting pursuit of his dream.


Many would argue that he made bad decisions along the way, sacrificing good things, sacrificing beautiful relationships with people. He sought happiness, freedom, and truth over love, money, faith, and fairness. When Chris meets his fate in the end, he undergoes a paradigm shift in his understanding of the world. One of the last things he writes in his journal before dying is "Happiness only real when shared."


It is this realization at the end, which rounds out Chris as an inspiration to me. He pursued his dreams with unrelenting passion, and in attaining his dreams he experienced growth. He developed a better understanding of the world, a better understanding of nature, and a better understanding of his relationships. In 2005, I hiked 1000 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, the latter third was spent largely solo hiking. Ultimately I left the trail, largely because I was no longer happy. This time, while hiking, I was able to spend my time with Apricots. The happiness associated with a shared hike exceeded my expectations. While I did find myself hiking at times wishing I could share what I was experiencing with others, with my family, and with other hiking friends, I knew that Apricots' was always at my side sharing the experience with me.