Freestyle just called from Vancouver (10/6/12). He and Bodybag arrived at the PCT border monument on 10/4/12, Manning Park on 10/5/12. The PCT is finished! Woo Hoo! A huge congratulations to them! They're headed by bus to Seattle and then Freestyle is coming to the island tomorrow, 11 months since Brad left for his two thru-hikes -- Te Araroa and Pacific Crest Trail.
As Bodybag and Freestyle reached the Canadian border, another hiker Astro, left the hospital in Yakima to get back on the trail. There are so many reasons this trail is sought out by so many. Astro because of his need to confront his cancer; Freestyle with a need to deal with the economy dropping him into a financial and emotional pit; another man we met was challenging aging; a young couple was looking to solve the age old question of "what's life all about?"; yet another because of a life-time career gone awry. The reasons are varied and for each hiker different. Yet the reasons are all the same -- to find themselves and to find meaning to their confusing and challenging lives or even their too easy lives. These hikers don't just finish a physical challenge they also are dealing with emotional, economic and spiritual challenges. The trail is frequently, perhaps always, life changing.
The hikers' loved ones waiting, supporting, loving and worrying at home are as proud as punch for the determination, sacrifices, hardships, and growth our sons, daughters, husbands, wives and friends are taking on with their courage. We're delighted with their new friends made along the way, the lessons learned and the demons met head on. Hats off to all of you!
|Freestyle at Manning Provincial Park, BC|
|Thru hikers waiting for the bus to return to the US|