Home on Whidbey is a family blog revolving around Fran, Ed, Brad, Yessi, plus puppy Benton, and our family, travels, friends, neighbors and community. Thanks for reading.


Keri Keri

On November 29, we received our first e-mail from Brad since he'd started hiking. Seeing his name in my in-box made my heart jump with pleasure. He reports he arrived in KeriKeri with a huge blister, bad sunburn, scratches on his legs from jungle vines, and a body covered with bug bites. Otherwise, he was happy and enjoying his adventure. He'd met a few people, including two women he was headed out to meet for wine. These women super impressed him beause they had started hiking a day after Brad, but caught up with him. Ha!

Both Brad's dad, Barry and I were blessed with nice e-mail communications and Brad's updated blog posting


Brad also sent a few pictures showing his trek-homes away from home. Through the years, Brad and I have spend many hiking/kayaking adventures in tent homes. I've always loved how cozy and comfortable I've felt in these little shelters.

Setting up camp right on the trail in the subtropics between Ahipara and KeriKeri

A quick rain shelter for a reprieve from the rain for two hours

Camp on the 90 Mile Beach

Brad has definitely developed the skill, determination and spirit of the thru hiker, a title he began aspiring to when he spent a month on the Pacific Crest Trail this past summer. A nice description of a thru-hiker appeared in a book I just finished, Fire Season, Field Notes From A Wilderness Lookout:

Human contact here is the more cherished for its rarity, and my favorite encunters have been with that peculiar subspecies known as the thru-hiker. Their aim: 3,000 miles on foot in five months, a hike along the Continental Divide Trail (CDT) from the Mexican border to Glacier National Park before the snow flies in October. Twenty miles a day, every day. I know them instantly by their fancy walking sticks, their sunburnt skin and general air of dinginess, and the scratches on their shins if they’re wearing shorts, which come from having bushwhacked through the thorny bush to my south. By the time they arrive on my peak they’ve walked a hundred miles on a shortcut from the Mexican border, headed for a junction with the Continental Divide....There’s no such thing as a day off in their lexicon, only what they call a “zero day.” For these people walking is joy, not work, yet daily mileage remains an axiom of progress. Their resupply points have all been planned in advance. Falling off the pace can mean going hungry.

I find these folks unfailingly gracious and cheerful, with their lightweight equipment, their hard legs and big smiles. They’re a self-selected bunch, at ease in the out-of-doors, but for people who’ve been walking close to a marathon every day they appear almost goofily invigorated. Within moments of their arrival they shed their packs and ask to climb the tower. They’re a week into their five-month journey and want to see where they’ve been and where they’re headed.

With one last e-mail exchange on November 30, Brad rushed away from the computer to purchase food and a few other supplies before catching up with the two women he met for wine the previous evening. They had arranged kayaks for the three of them to cross the bay. His next stop would be Pai Hai, but probably not online again until Whangarei.

Happy Treking dear Brad!

Next stop Whangarei

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