What is there to miss?


Too much to miss.

What is there to miss? A whole-freakin’ lot. Here’s a bunch of randoms that have popped into my thru-hike recovering mind… in no particular order:

●Exercise every day
●Eating as much as I want
●Eating whatever I want
●Drinking from clean mountain springs
●Drinking from nasty streams
●The warmth of thousands of feathers inside my down sleeping bag surrounding me and cuddling me to sleep each night
●Slow-closing eyelids as I fall asleep staring at the stars
●Feeling physically exhausted at the end of each day
●Feeling mentally exhausted at the end of each day
●Sensory overload
●The feeling of my backpack getting lighter and lighter as I strategically eat my food stash
●Woodland critters chirping and chattering as I walk past them
●The sound of my feet on a variety of trail surfaces
●The smell of pine, sage, flowers, blueberries, and fresh air
●The meaning behind aching feet
●How it feels to shower after five days on the trail
●My holey shoes (I wish I hadn’t thrown them out)
●Seeing so many smiles (especially the smiles behind overgrown beards)
●Seeing the pickle jar through the trees as I head out of the woods
●The feeling of that long-awaited hug when I get to the pickle jar
●Airing my toes out on a break
●Eating crushed potato chips with a spoon
●Feeling in the best shape of my life
●The beautiful, unique camaraderie of thru-hikers
●The mountains. All of them.
●Keeping my phone in airplane mode for days at a time
●Silent, thankful conversations with God about what’s in front of me
●Friends becoming family at “hello, my trail name is…”
●Weird bugs
●Having so many interesting things to take photos of
●Being above the clouds
●Being in the clouds
●Rock-hopping across streams and rivers
●Being outside… all the time… in any weather
●The freedom felt from being able to survive with only what’s carried on my back

Finally, I think what I’m going to miss the most is finding so much comfort in discomfort, the pride felt at the end of every day for dealing with it and being happier than I could ever be about it.

I will crave those discomforts with all of my being… every day until that pack is on my back and my feet are on the trail again. I am a thru-hiker, and I already miss it all.

Tonight I love missing the trail… because it helps me remember I’ll never be done hiking. I will be back. One adventure at a time…

Thanks for reading and being a part of my journey!

With love,
Toots Magoots
(Robin Grapa)


8 thoughts on “What is there to miss?

  1. I came in late so I’m only on Day 50 and I can’t wait to continue reading about your adventure. I talk to God on my hikes too…Congratulations on the finish!!

  2. Oh Robin how lucky you’ve been to have two major thru hikes under your belt, ADT IN 2006 and now the PCT 2013. Thanks for posting every single day to share your journeys with us all even when you are soaked wet and freezing cold from the rain in Washington or dehydrated and burning hot from the desert air or just plain beat down tired. The inspiration you’ve given me I can’t put in words I just know that I want to put my pack on and thru hike again so I can feel every single thing you just described. Well said!

  3. TONIGHT I LOVE YOU!!! COME HOME!!!! we need you back here, winter is coming and we are planning a subzero bondo with 1′ cut ribeyes from country sausage and you and Adam need to be here before we run out of good wood.

  4. I totally agree with Alex! You brought the trail alive everyday for me and I will miss reading about your adventure every day. Plus now I really don’t know what I am going to do for screensavers since I won’t have your pictures any more to inspire me! Ha! You are a rockstar!! We are all missing your daily “hike” so I cannot even imagine what you are going through! God Bless!

  5. Dear Robin,

    I can only imagine how much you are missing the trail! I was only reading along and I feel a profound loss….it’s insane I wasn’t even there, but you are an exceptional writer and I felt like I was right there next to you. Thank you so much for sharing your journey! And yes, you are entitled to mourn the loss of the trail all you want!

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