Today was not unlike most any other Sunday, doing chores to prepare for the upcoming week and catching up on podcasts, however today I happened to stumble on one episode of The Dirtbag Diaries from their archives that touched me deeply and I felt it warranted a quick blog post to share it with you guys.
The episode originally aired on January 22, 2016, which does make it a little dated but the theme is one that is even older – mans calling and capacity for helping his fellow man and in my experience there is an abundance of this philosophy and ethos in the hiker community.
We got a call from Australia. M’Lynn’s husband, Paul, passed away this past July. He left behind three pairs of polished hiking boots and a backpack packed for his dream hike: the 2,190-mile Appalachian Trail.
She had an idea for one final gift for her husband. “How good would it be,” she asked, “for his boots to make the journey even if Paul could not?” We want to make it happen.
Be forewarned you might find the allergies flaring up as you listen to the episodes and watch the film (links to all three episodes and the REI hosted movie below), making the eyes water a bit but I am confident you will come away from the experience with a renewed sense of hope in mankind. And if you are a lover of the trail like me, you will be especially moved by our community and when asked next “what are you?” – you will proudly say “I’m a hiker!”.
The Dirtbag Diaries Episodes & Film:
During my trip last month to Big Bend my trusty old hiking boots of the past ten years walked their final mile. They now have their eternal resting place along the foothills to Mule Ears Peak (video of services shared at the bottom of this post). So with a new pair of boots to carry me on my adventures needed, I recenently cashed in my REI dividends and made the purchase. Today was their first day to have a trail test and I couldn’t think of a better place than my favorite Texas state park, Lost Maples SNA.
It was unseasonably cold today, but with my new boots laced up I took on the West Loop Trail. I am happy to report they performed quite well and I didn’t suffer any hot spots or uncomfortable pinches, creases, etc. As ususal I had my camera with me and took some snaps throughout the day (highlights shared below) – hope you enjoy!
Lost Maples State Natural Area – West Trail Loop
Boot Funeral – Big Bend National Park
One of my favorite nearby Texas State Parks is Seminole Canyon SNA, located near Comstock. The park is a quick drive from where I live and is where I run to when I want a break from the Hill Country and need to feed my desert cravings. The park is most noted for it’s Lower Pecos pictographs (more on the parks history page). I also took the White Shaman tour which isn’t part of the TPWD, but run by Rock Art Foundation and is located across the highway from the park entrance. This trip predates my getting into digital photography, so all the images I share with you below were taken with my iPhone, but I hope you still enjoy them. -ck