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Returning home is the most difficult part of long-distance hiking. You have grown outside the puzzle and your piece no longer fits. —Cindy Ross

If you don’t hike, I encourage you to. Perhaps at first five miles seems daunting, but by the end of a season, 40 will be something that your heart longs to have the time to do. When I go hiking, I always take podcasts with me, on God, science, and philosophy, and use the time to be astounded by creation and enthralled by beauty; when I have to return, I’m always sad. 

There is no better place for focused prayer and meditation—the freedom from every distraction is exhilirating. And if you have a companion, the depth of bond you can build is likewise incalculable. It is a fast from the encroachments of modern society’s shallow but all-pervasive attempts to influence one’s thinking; it’s the ultimate reset.

“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity.” —John Muir

With love, always,

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