My husband Adam and I went hiking with our Greyhound, Seamus on Saturday. It was one of the first cold-ish days here in Vermont, and most of the leaves had gone. We have this amazing pack for Seamus that we got a couple of years ago when we took him backpacking, so he can carry his water and other stuff.

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The first time we put the pack on him and filled it up, he almost fell over. With his long skinny legs and already top heavy body, the pack almost took him over the edge. You could see him swaying in the breeze. Fairly soon he got his bearings and we were off.

It had been some time since we used the pack for Seamus so he was a bit rusty. If you don’t know any greyhounds, just know that they look forlorn all the time. And with the pack on he looked especially forlorn.

We had spent quite a bit of time deciding where to go hiking and whether to bring Seamus. A lot of websites have some descriptions but not enough to inform you whether bringing a dog is a good idea.

We got to the parking lot for Burnt Rock Mountain and saddled up Seamus. about 10 yards from our car there was a ravine with a river running through it. No bridge, no rock bridge, nothing. ok…

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We thought about it quite a bit and scouted around for good places to cross. Mind you we have a reluctant dog with us and it is 40 degrees F. We consider going somewhere else but then decide to just go for it. Shoes and socks off we wade through the frigid water. Wow! What a way to start a hike.

Much of the hike was uneventful, aside from Adam having to lift Seamus over many an obstacle.

When we were what I thought had to be close to the summit, we started on a fairly steep incline. Seamus at this point was well worn out, as were Adam and I and we decided to turn back. The flat diagonal rock face and ladder were too much for us. That was a tough decision. Getting to the summit always feels like the reward you get for the work of the hike. Even though we would have made it if we didnDSC_0105’t have Seamus with us, I don’t regret bringing him.

Instead of the reward of the grand vistas we had some really hilarious views of Seamus.  And the water was just as frigid on the way out. 

Enjoy your next hike!

Courtney

I have been making time for hiking which has been really amazing. My jewelry is of the mountains, but I need to take time to be in the mountains to nourish my continued work on my business in addition to working full time. I tend to get stuck in the rut of getting things done. There are always things to do, and with my personality I will NEVER run out of things on my to do list. But taking time to enjoy myself is so important.

In the past several weeks I have hiked Hunger Mountain, for the first time, Camel’s Hump which I have hiked many times and Mount Abe which I remembered only when I was about halfway up.  The hike up Hunger Mountain was a haul. It was hard. My muscles were sore. I felt out of shape. But getting to the top was such a wonderful reward.

Next was Camel’s Hump, which I hiked with my son and his friend. They flew up the mountain and patiently waited for me to catch up. There is a certain kind of fellowship that happens on the trails. An encouragement of strangers ‘You’re almost there!’ that happens that is really wonderful. And at the top it’s like an impromptu party of people who have never met.

My most recent hike was Mount Abe, and on my way up I was reflecting on why I hike. In the moment it can be hard, convincing yourself to continue upwards, and stepping again and again. But it gives me fortitude in other areas. I think in addition to the beautiful vistas I gain a determination in other areas of my life, because it is just as much a mental exercise as a physical one.

If you can, take some time to hike! You’ll be happy you did.

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