Monthly Archives: October 2017

Sunday Morning Mindfulness

“If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.”

~William Blake

Sunday mornings are always a good morning for hikes. This one was as well, but I was still a little tired from the 10 mile hike that I did late Friday so I knew I wouldn’t be doing a repeat! With that said, the Green Trail looked like the way to go. Three and a half miles was enough to get me in the proper frame of mind for the day!

Happy Hiking!!!

2017 Mileage:

10/15/17-3.5-288.12

Albany->Ward Pound Ridge

“When we are pushed and pulled in many different directions, we lose our sovereignty. We’re not free. Don’t allow yourself to be carried away anymore. Resist. Each mindful step is a step toward freedom. This kind of freedom is not political freedom. It’s freedom from the past, from the future, from our worries and our fears.”

-Thich Nhat Hanh

After an unexpected trip to Albany on Friday the 13th, I was left with a couple more hours of daylight than I was used to. Knowing this, I decided to go for a hike. The weather was beautiful and a nice cool breeze washed over the woods. Despite the fact that I had driven over four hours, I felt surprisingly good as I made my way on to the trail. My goal at first was to walk the original 5 1/2 miles of the Labyrinth but I hoped to do more.

Finishing the last couple of hundred yards of the first loop, I still felt good and knew that I would be able to do a few more miles. Instead of doing the Red Trail again, I broke off when it intersected with the RT and followed until it met up with the Yellow Trail. This brought me back to the car.

Truly an exercise in trying to find your inner peace!

Happy Hiking!!!

2017 Mileage:

10/13/17-10.2-284.62

 

Another Near Miss….

“Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet.”

-Roger Miller

Another day, another hike, another near miss with the rain. Only this time I didn’t even know it was supposed to rain! Heading out right after work, I decided to do the loop that I did on Sunday, only this time I would go past the connector trail and continue on the Red/Yellow Trail to the finish.

When I was about a half of a mile from the end, I saw this leaf suspended in mid air. At first I was a little freaked out because I couldn’t see anything holding it up. It just kept turning with the slight breeze that was blowing.  Even when you look at the picture, you can’t see anything!!!

As I finished the hike and stretched my legs, I felt the familiar drops of rain as it went from barely raining to pouring in a matter of a couple of minutes. Once again, I got lucky and didn’t get soaked!

WP_20171011_021

Happy Hiking!!!

2017 Mileage:

10/11/17-4.8-274.42

It Can All Be New Again

“We frequently walk with the sole purpose of getting from one place to another. But where are we in between? With every step, we can feel the miracle of walking on solid ground. We can arrive in the present moment with every step.”

-Thich Nhat Hanh

“When we first learned to walk, we walked just to enjoy walking. We walked and discovered each moment as we encountered it. We can learn to walk that way again.”

-Thich Nhat Hanh

Over the past several months I have learned the truth in the quotes written above by Thich Nhat Hanh. Although I certainly do not remember learning to walk, I can recall the squeals of delight from both of my children as they took their first steps. Eyes wide open with surprise, the fact that taking their first steps could bring such joy is something that we have forgotten as adults. We have nothing left to experience that is a new and as exciting as this.

As I recall those moments, I have to admit that when I go out to hike I don’t squeal anymore (at least out loud), but I do feel a sense of bliss and satisfaction every time I head to the woods. I am, however, mindful of why I walk as often as I can. These days it is equally as much for my mental well being as it is for my physical health.

My point is a simple one. Regardless of why you may walk, it is important not to lose the wonder and excitement that you felt as a child and made those discoveries for the first time. If you look hard enough, you can discover something new on every hike that you take. The changing of the leaves, the smell of the morning air or meeting someone new, it is all up to you. If you are lucky, you just won’t be listening to just what your head is telling you. If you listen very carefully, you will hear it in your heart as well.

Happy Hiking!!!

R/G->R->RT->Y->Connector->R

“One of the riches the wilderness has to offer is a prolonged immersion in absolute silence.”

-Colin Fletcher 

When my alarm went off this morning I knew that time was against me. The forecast was for rain, and after ever so slowly crawling out of bed, I looked at the radar on my phone and just as I thought, things didn’t look good. So the battle in my brain began. Do I just forget about hiking for the day? Do I take the risk and get out before the rain starts? Do I listen to that pesky little voice that was telling me to go back to bed? Or do I ignore it and just head out the door.

Since I hadn’t hiked since Thursday, I grabbed my water bottles, shouldered my pack and made my way to the jeep. Yes, even though the odds were against me, I made my way to Ward Pound Ridge.

When I got to the reservation, it was still creepy dark. Knowing that I was going to have to wait about 20 minutes before I could get onto the trail, I looked at the weather again and saw that I had 105 minutes until the rain would start. Five minutes later, it said 115 minutes. Five minutes later it was down to 108 minutes. What was happening? At that point, I made the command decision to start hiking.

If you take a look at the title of this blog entry, it details the route I took today. When I got to the end, it was in the realm of possibility that I could do a few more miles if the rain wasn’t to close. I took out my phone and checked the forecast. Sure enough, I had ten minutes until the rain would start. But would it? Was it telling me the truth? Did I want to chance it? I decided to head back to my car.

Sure enough, ten minutes later it started rain, no, pour….

Happy Hiking!!!

2017 Mileage:

10/8/17-4.5-269.62