8 years ago today, Ryan and I set off on our AT journey. I wouldn't trade those 4 months, and the subsequent years of finishing off the rest of our trail miles, for anything. What better to be out tromping through the woods with your best friend, surrounded by other awesome hiking crazies?! This time of year always conjures up memories of hiking through the woods, in rain, in snow, as flowers bloom, across mountain peaks and up and down the southern valleys, racing spring as it headed north, greening everything in its path. I can't believe it's been 8 years - it seems like forever ago, and yesterday, all at the same time. Funny how time will do that.
Today's short 3-mile jaunt around the block actually made me feel like spring might be on its way. Temps were mild, the snow is clearly and quickly melting, and the air had that damp, earthy smell which I always associate with this time of year. Running isn't quite the same as hiking, but there is a comforting similarity between hiking and ultrarunning. Spending hours out in the woods, with like-minded friends, enjoying the smells, sounds and sights around us. There's something special about that, and something that I never grow tired of. While our hiker friends are far-flung, somehow, though, I think we've found another like-minded group of people here in Maine - the Trail Monsters certainly are awesome running
crazies, whom we are lucky to count as friends. We all may be crazy (or perhaps I should just speak for myself), but I think I'm cool with that :-)