Re-entry begins

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I've finally gotten LOTS of sleep. Naps rule!

I’ve been laying low these past few days with Adam, trying to decompress and take this whole re-entry thing kind of slow. It gave me time to think, and with more thought, more would bubble to the surface. This time off has been good. I’ve laid around, napped, been lazy, ate food, watched movies, and acted as a hermit for part of it. We did get out some… I first bought an $8 pair of blue jeans at a thrift store. Then I overwhelmed myself with the task of trying to find a real bra that was comfortable. We even got to the theatre to see Gravity in 3D, immediately followed by a second movie, Rush. But our time is up. It’s time to go home. After a few more quick errands, like an oil change, we’re heading east towards Wisconsin… and our family.

I have to be honest here as the PCT gets smaller and smaller in our rear-view mirror – I still feel disappointment. I don’t like feeling this way, but it’s a feeling I can’t really ignore. Trust me, I’ve tried. The lingering what-ifs still float around in my mind. I could have done those 60 miles… dammit, I know I could have… but I chose not to. There are a lot of reasons why I chose not to, and I think all of those reasons are justified – especially at the time I decided on them. What’s been bothering me most recently is the question to myself, “Did I make these decisions too soon?” I can’t help but think, “Yes. Yes, I did. I should’ve waited a few days, rested so I wasn’t so exhausted and gone back out.” But at the time, with all the wavering, all the back-and-forth, and being turned away from that trail… I just wanted, so badly, to make a solid decision. I wanted to be strong and confident about it. I wanted to be okay with it. And I felt sure I was. I believed I was. I really did.

Adam knew it – sometimes he knows me better than I do. I’m pretty sure he saw this coming, so he asked me a number of times if I was sure. When I asked him if he would believe me if I told him it was done, I think he responded, “I’m not going to believe you but I’ll trust you.” What else could he do, really? He tried, and I love him for that.

The good part of what I’m feeling is still in progress, but I suppose good feelings can stay in progress as long as they want, right? Maybe that just means I’m starting to focus on the right things… I think! I know that it’s time to work on letting go of what-ifs and disappointment, and start working on what I have accomplished, because 2,600 miles is a lot. I hiked each one of those miles mentally positive and physically strong, and I’m really proud of that. I’m looking forward to working on ways to lock in all of the happy memories through slideshows, photos collages, and journal entries. I hope that with every day, the pain of that series of decision-making will fade. I’m pretty sure it will. The amazing experiences, memories and pride will fill in those holes. It was a great summer. It really, really was. And when I look back on it, that’s what I want to remember. Instead of “60 miles short,” its going to be “2,600 miles of freakin’ epic adventure.”

I am walking away with unfinished business… you’ll see me back on the PCT. It won’t be tomorrow, and it might not be next year, but I’ll be back. Save a cheer for us when Aloha and Toots Magoots makes that decision…

Stay tuned… answers to your questions are coming soon, as are some gear reviews. And if I can find a way, the 165 daily Instagrams from the hike. For now, we drive!


I love road trips with Adam. Here we go! To Wisconsin!

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Re-entry shopping - don't worry, some of these belonged to PRT!

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Appropriate TV.

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3D movie! Yay!

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Safe and sound

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Bye-bye west... for now!

Thanks for reading and being a part of my journey!

With love,
Toots Magoots
(Robin Grapa)

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7 thoughts on “Re-entry begins

  1. Ahhh! These emails make me a little sad too. You really did it, the 60 miles are so minuscule, but they are there. Have a safe trip back to Wisconsin. Oatmeal and Dandygreens have been hanging out at our house, eating great Car Valley cheese, hiking WI and MI, cooking wonderful meals for me. So nice.

  2. We don’t always understand the hows and whys of where we are. It is our job to figure out the next step and then, looking through the rear-view mirror, determine what we learned about life and ourselves. Would-have–Could-have must give way to the lessons we walk away with. Those lessons may only come to light after some time. When you are my age (78) you will reflect and have great wisdom about the benefits of things happening just as they did. Peace, Love, and Joy on your journey through life!

  3. 2600 miles!! those last 60 are not going any where..they will be yours soon enough!!
    thank you so much for the blog, I followed from before your road trip started out here and looked forward to every post. I have wanted to through hike the pct for over 30 years but have never made the effort to do it. You are the inspiration for me to plan now for doing it within the next 3 years!
    Thanks for being such a positve and happy person! good luck to you and Adam with the future.

  4. Hiya Toots, it’s nice to see you resting! I went out on the 3rd from Rainy Pass and made it to the border. By day four I was exhausted to the point of tears, even with snowshoes and just a few inches of “postholing.” But I do gotta say that those last 60 miles contained the most terrifying bit of trail for me: the ~10 BIG washouts between Rock and Woody Passes. In other sections, I also saw a cougar close-up, a huge blond bear close-up, was on Clouds Rest during a lightning storm, watched someone almost drown, almost stepped on a Diamondback rattlesnake, etc etc. The washouts took the cake. I would not hike that bit again this month, even if paid. Too scary. Too risky. The people downplaying them are ignorant. Whereas there were 6-7 washouts in August, this month there are 9-10. Meaning: the trail is STILL caving in! I’d say, be happy with your gut choice for now, and hike those washouts when it is dry out, the ground is dry, and maybe even after they have somehow been repaired. Hey, your intuition might have been protecting you — personally, I thought I would die there, and I almost shat my pants. Rest well. XO Puppy

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