Thruhiker Celebrity?

“Thruhikers are celebrities!” I read that in a women’s hiking group and chuckled. I don’t feel special! I walked the Appalachian Trail from Maine to Georgia within a year’s time, so I am a thruhiker.

As a thruhiker, how I know about myself is that I fulfilled my dream of being able to say, “I walked the AT”. I feel true to myself, that I listened to my heart and did what it took to walk one day at a time – and keep walking! So, if doing that makes me a celebrity, great. More than fame, however, what I want to do is entice others to create their own walks wherever they are, on the Appalachian Trail or in the neighborhood park! I want to help you discern what your equivalent of the Appalachian Trail is and step into fulfilling that dream!

I also had the good fortune to work as a ridgerunner, a Leave-No-Trace educator encouraging stewardship on the trail, for seven seasons so I talked with hundreds of hikers on their thruhikes. I got some really good ideas about what character and strategies support hikers who eventually complete the trail. Sadly, I met many, many hikers who thought they wanted to thruhike the Appalachian Trail, but found out that wasn’t what made their heart sing! I was sad that their true dream wasn’t apparent.  Hiking the AT really isn’t for everyone, but everyone does have something that makes their heart sing!  I want to help people do that! There are many ways to have a fulfilling walk of any length – a few miles to thousands! They all have similar qualities, which start with one’s reason for choosing to walk a trail, or sail a boat, or paint a picture, write a book, sew a garment, whatever is true to you!

Studying my own story and listening to thousands of AT hikers, helped me discern five essential aspects of a long-distance walk to consider in planning and fulfilling a walk.

  • Know your trail
  • Consider your timing
  • Get support
  • Love your gear
  • Methodically transform challenges

My report, Five Essentials to Creating a Radiantly Fulfilling Walk of Any Length elaborates on all five. If you read it you’ll get a good feeling for getting started on your own walk – or dream!

Get your complementary copy here!

https://forgivenesswalks.com/RadiantWalk5

You could be a celebrity too!

Heart Connecting

♥♥June 22, 2019

Our first sojourn of Journey 2019 was in Decatur, GA to play with grandson Felix! Everything I was told about grandparenting being “the best thing” is true. Every visit is precious and being one who gets to lavish attention and love without the trouble is indeed the best! Our sojourn features other endearing connections…

John and I were hosted by my most generous and enduring supporters in Avondale Estates! They shared their luxurious Airbnb suite with us! If you have family visiting and don’t have guest rooms, Angie and Tom’s place would be a fine place to lavish attention on them!

Having lived in Decatur myself for twelve years (powerfully trnsformative ones as you know!) I have a long list of friends to connect with and not enough time to do it. That makes the two connections I made in the area extra special!

I visited one of my consistent readers and discovered that we both yearn to have conversations about relationships that jump right into the hows and whys and meanings of them. Our thirty-minute conversation brought validation and clarity for both of us! Scott emboldens me to keep sharing Radical Forgiveness tools and create space for these kinds of conversations. Yes, I love going below the surface, right to our hearts! Thanks, Scott!

Another heart connection made as we left Atlanta bound for Charleston, SC for lavishing love on another grandson, was in service of retrieving some stuff. When I sold my house in 2013 with no new house to furnish, I entrusted a few precious items to friends. My painting of a woodland path, beautiful ceramic bread bowl and grandmother’s tea set were at Cynthia’s farmhouse in rural Covington, GA. She was home! We talked. Again, we jumped right in to authentic revelation and exploration. With her, it was about conscious ageing! Although she said that I’m her model for moving into old age, I think that maybe I just make a good mirror for her grace, courage, and leadership. She’s the one who’s stepping courageously into her choices about recommended medical procedures, quality of life, and where she feels at home.

Heart connections are where I want to share my time! Each one is a more of energy and transformation on my journey! I want to have them, create them, foster them every day in every place! Maybe that’s why I love walking in Nature, for miles and miles, days and days. My walk from Maine to Georgia on the Appalachian Trail was a 2,175-mile Nature walk, with beauty all around!

Cynthia reminded me of a Navajo prayer she knows from her practice. That’s a good one to carry is into Summer!

With beauty before me

May I walk

With beauty behind me

May I walk

With beauty above me

May I walk

With beauty below me

May I walk

With beauty all around me

May I walk

May you walk in beauty, authentic conversation, and connection today.  If you need someone to do that with hit reply and tell your story! I’m here for you!

In joy,

Regina

P.S. I have an entire journey planned for exploring and transforming stories! Join me in November. Journey to YOUR Heartland

Angie and Tom’s place in Avondale Estates, GA https://abnb.me/BObDEiPavO

Blessing

As our journey begins, here’s a blessing I’m singing, thanks to my friend, Sara and generations before her!

“May troubles be less and blessings be more
May nothing but happiness come to your door
And may you have luck wherever you go
And blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow.

May winds be at your back and sun be overhead
May friends be at your side wherever you are led”.

Walk with blessings

Winds at your back, Sun overhead

Sharing from the Heart Continued

What would I share more of if I’m “COMING FROM THE HEART” without worrying if I’m being judged or if I’ll make money at it? Here are some activities I’ll CHOOSE to share more starting today:

  • Stories about walking the Benton MacKaye Trail
  • Satori Games. Playing has been on sabbatical
  • Walks open to others
  • Thirteen Steps to Radical Forgiveness calls

What’s in my way is worrying that I can’t schedule them while I’m out on the trail because I can’t guarantee connectivity. Well, here’s a possibility:  What if the calls happened anyway even if I weren’t there?!!!!!

Here’s to sharing “carelessly”!

What might YOU share if you weren’t worried about how it turned out?  If you knew you couldn’t fail?

Please comment!

In joy,

Regina

Benton MacKaye Trail: Deep Creek Bridge

Deep Creek Crossing

It’s October, 2009. I’m standing on the north side of Deep Creek in the Smokies. “It’s not good to be here alone”, I thought. “It’s not safe here. I shouldn’t be doing this by myself. I should turn back. Is there another way?”

I’m at mile 44, three miles shy of the half way point in the Smokies section of the Benton MacKaye Trail I’m looking at my map, tracing a possible alternate route around the swollen torrent that is Deep  Creek. I’m considering scooting across the tipped log that’s interrupted by perpendicular poles. That’s what the bridge had become.

“What a surprise!” Last June, on my first BMT traverse, this had been a simple walk across a log bridge. Now, crossing this big creek required a strategic decision.

Continue reading

Hiking Memories: Four Seasons

Four Seasons on the Benton MacKaye Trail

Reflections on Mileposts on the Trail

Regina Reiter


BMTSouthbound – June, 2009; October, 2009; January, 2013
BMTNorthbound- April, 2010
BMT Davenport Gap to Beech Gap, January, 2010

Links: Photos, Journals, Reflections, Slide shows

http://www.trailjournals.com/mssnglnk     Pictures galore in many trail journals
http://forgivenesswalks.com/newsletter-archives/   Words for Winter Walking series

http://forgivenesswalks.com/benton-mackaye-trail/    First Winter Walk and Spring Walk slide shows

http://forgivenesswalks.com/benton-mackaye-trail-winter-thru-hike/   Second Winter Walk slide show

http://forgivenesswalks.com/free-resources/fabulous-foods-for-backpacking/  Upcoming Foods Course

 

 

 

Stream” Mile 119

It’s milepost 119 from the northern terminus of the Benton MacKaye Trail.

The six men in the BMTA Fall Backpack Trip party keep their pace stepping over  the two small streams there. They keep chatting as their feet land firmly on the flat triangle of earth between the streams.  In just seconds, they’re stepping up the steep bank and heading south on the trail, bound for the night’s camp at Cold Spring Gap.

“But wait!” I call. “This was my Winter Camp! I thought I could have DIED here!”

No one heard me as I alone halted at this unremarkable spot. The Fall foliage and dark Earth blended pleasantly with the gently rushing streams with no fanfare. My mind was rushing though as I relived the memory of my first winter walk. I had camped here two years earlier as snow fell, choosing a site with a water source and a surprise phone signal.

The snow fell through the night and morning revealed a world of white.  Wrapped up in my sleeping bag, peeking out under the edges of my tarp, I questioned my preparedness to go on alone in this deep snow, past the Cherohala Skyway into “The Heart of Darkness”, the ominous name for the remote 10-mile section of the BMT along the North Carolina/Tennessee state line.

Delighted with the beauty of the snowy woods, I was satisfied with the plan I had been able to make with Brenda Harris, a BMT friend who lived nearby, to pick me up at Beech Gap, about 4 miles south, the next morning. “You’ll have to wait until they open up the road,” she had said. Continue reading

Benton MacKaye Trail Winter Thru-Hike Slide Show!

Regina, founder of Forgiveness Walks, completed the 300-mile Benton MacKaye Trail during a walk in January, 2013. Follow her journey, photographed by John Lemberg in slides and music.

Please comment below!

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Just Keep Walking

Just Keep Walking

By Regina

 

Walking balances me.  Walking energizes me.

Walking calms me.  Walking centers me.

Walking clears my mind of busy-ness.

Walking grounds me.

Walking strengthens me.

Walking renews my connection with Spirit

and opens me to the unlimited creative source of the Universe.

I am blessed by walking, in walking, through walking.

 

And so I walk.

 

I walk.

 

I walk.