Today my brother, Richard ,and his wife, Carol, are beginning another hike. Some may remember that a couple of years ago they did a through hike of the Appalachian Trail from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Mount Katahdin in Maine, all 2200 miles of it. This time they are going to hike across North Carolina on the Mountain to Sea Trail. It is 950 miles. It is a relatively new trail not fully developed yet. It begins at Clingmans Dome (The highest point on the Appalachian Trail ) , a wonderful lookout spot in the Great Smokey Mountains and ending at Jockey's Ridge State Park in Nags Head on the Atlantic Coast. It is roughly a diagonal crossing of the state from Southwest to Northeast. I wish them well, while this is less than half the distance of the Appalachian Trail and not over as challenging a terrain, for them it has additional personal challenges they did not face doing the AT.
There is a story here. Richard is two years younger than I am and Carol is older, about my age I think, so long distant hiking is a physical test I admire and only wish I was up to such an effort. In their past, they have both been marathon runners but have had to condition themselves to begin long distant hiking in their retirement. The hiking of the length of the Appalachian trail was a once in a life time achievement.
Upon finishing the AT adventure Carol found out she had breast cancer. In the last couple of years she has been fighting this condition. At one point she thought she had defeated the cancer and the two of them went on a recreational hike and vacation in Florida. They returned to learn that there we cancer cells in Carol lymphatic system. The battle against cancer was to be fought once again.
Recently, Carol was told she is cancer free. This hike, which they had been hoping to do was now going ahead.
My brother, a few weeks ago had a new knee joint installed. I think he wore the last one out on the Appalachian Train.
So you see this hike has some personal challenges and it will bring some special rewards whether of not they are able to ultimately finish all 950 miles. They earned the designation of the "Canadian Geese" while on the Appalachian Trail, so now we can say the Canadian Geese are taking flight once again.
PS: I don't have to tell you that the weather has been very hot. They are hoping for fewer 100 F degree days.
I will be following their Trail Journal where they will post entries and picture of their progress. from time to time. I look forward to sharing in another great adventure.