Hiking Lessons

Be as solitary and quiet as the moon, when you hike.

Be as solitary and quiet as the moon, when you hike.

I’m going to teach you how to hike. I’ve stomped many a hill, so I know what I’m talking about.

First and foremost, hike alone whenever possible. Hiking partners either slow you down or speed you up. You can’t enjoy nature at your own pace when you bring along an extra pair of legs.

Hiking partners also have a way of talking, and this destroys one of the best things about nature. Silence. You can’t hear any silence when someone else is talking. It also scares away the wildlife.

Being quiet allows you to stumble upon scenes like this.

Being quiet allows you to stumble upon scenes like this.

If you must hike with a partner, get that person to agree to wear a gag. And keep quiet, yourself. Or hike only with deaf-mutes.

Begin your hikes about a half-hour before sunrise. Everyone else is sleeping at this time, making the trail yours, and yours alone. If you truly want to get away from it all, this is the time of day you must begin.

This is the best time of day to begin a hike.

This is the best time of day to begin a hike.

Get off the damn trail. This is another clever way to get away from it all. You hardly ever come across another human being when you hike cross-country. You may get lost. You may die. But at least your end will occur in a beautiful natural setting.

Take off, cross-country.

Take off, cross-country.

Don’t worry about reaching your destination. I hardly ever reach mine. The outdoors is your destination, and that’s good enough. Stop frequently and enjoy your surroundings, wherever you amble. Lounge beneath a tree. Sit in the sun on a rock. Don’t worry too much about time. Just worry about getting back to your car before twilight. Unless you enjoy sleeping beneath the stars while freezing your ass off.

Lounge beneath a pine tree.

Lounge beneath a pine tree.

Hiking alone has its risks. One day you could end up as buzzard food, and no one would be the wiser. But being in the belly of a buzzard, soaring high into the atmosphere and then being pooped back to earth ain’t such a bad fate. Isn’t it all about being one with nature?

If the worst happens, at least you'll get a beautiful sky burial, with the help of mother nature's coroner.

If the worst happens, at least you’ll get a beautiful sky burial, with the help of mother nature’s coroner.

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