Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Romancing the Trail

"No all who wander are lost." - J.R.R. Tolkien

I have a problem. Whenever I drive somewhere outside the city (especially somewhere new) and I see a trail leading into the woods I have an almost irresistible urge to stop the car and go running into the bush. I know this is a problem because my wife says so. Also, if I gave in to this urge, it would make cross country car trips very, very slow.

Every time I see a new trail, it bewitches me. It calls to me seductively, tempting me to forget about whatever else I was doing and to seek what lies further up and further in. To me, an unknown trail is the most mysterious thing there is. Every trail is an adventure that is waiting, just waiting for me to explore and discover. A good trail promises mystery, fear, beauty, and curiosity fulfilled. Exploring a new trail feels like the most natural thing in the world; I want to see what lies deeper, deeper in the heart of the wood.

Every trail has a personality all its own that makes you love it or hate it. A sampling of my favorite trails:
1. The Maah Da Hey Trail (100 miles long) in the badlands of North Dakota. It is so easy to get lost out there and the badlands make you feel like you are on a different planet. Otherworldly.
2. Black Island (near Hecla Island) has a trail that goes through the center of the island. On a canoe trip with my friends Terry and Dawson we started exploring this trail but turned around because of time. I will see what lies at the end!
3. The Mantario Trail is a famous Manitoba trail that I want to explore sometime soon.
4. It's only 10 minutes of walking, but the trail out to the overnite site on small peninsula at Beaver Creek Bible Camp holds much meaning for me. I walked it as a camper, counselor, and director. Every twist and bend holds precious memories from my past.
5. Somewhere on Vancouver Island (near Parksville?) is a magical trail that my family and I discovered while there for my sister's wedding. Rainforest, gargantuan trees, and a trail that ended at a mist covered lake flanked by mountains. Closest thing to paradise I ever saw.

May Light increase!

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