I Walk for Love

I’m sitting on an air mattress in the bachelor pad of a man I just met today. He’s called Girlscout, a trail angel who will drop my Dad, sister and I off at the trail head tomorrow morning.

I’m about to hike 2,659 miles!  Honestly, the number is so staggering I can hardly fathom what it means, what those miles will hold. So, let’s zoom in a bit: tomorrow I will hike 20 miles beginning at the Mexican border. And after, I walk on until I am done. Until my soul or my heart or an aching body or the end of this trail in Canada beckon me on to another adventure. 

I walk this trail for so many reasons.  I walk it to live out Mark Twain’s sentiment that you only regret the things you don’t do, so I hike to live with no regrets. I walk to expand my vision for myself in this life, to experience living fully instead of working in the hopes that someday I might have just such an adventure when I have more time or money or courage. 

I walk to rebuild my trust in myself after an unexpected heartbreak. I walk to experience Cheryl Strayed’s revelation during her own PCT hike: to know myself as safe in this world. I walk to feel power course through my body, knowing that I can carry a 35 pound pack for thousands of miles. I walk for all of the people I will meet and stories I will hear. I walk for laughter and freedom and wild places. I walk to know my father and sister in new ways and share new places with them.

Mostly, I walk for love; I walk for me.  My trail name is Blaze.

2 thoughts on “I Walk for Love

  1. This is awesome. You are awesome. I feel ok boosting your ego because I’m sure the trail will break it plenty. In person you mentioned being interested in meeting up with people along your path. I am so interested in that!

  2. Ashley, I love your spirit! Your determination and positive outlook on life are things I’ve always admired. Wishing you the best! *hugs*

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