“The farther one gets into the wilderness, the greater is the attraction of its lonely freedom.” – Theodore Roosevelt
This past weekend, my Mom asked me what my hiking and travel goals were for 2018. Last year I completed the 2017 52 Hike Challenge, which was a major accomplishment for me, and she not only was an avid follower of my blog posts during that challenge, but she also completed some of the hikes with me. Quite frankly, I had been enjoying my time off after the madness of the holidays and the stress of finishing all 52 hikes in time, but it’s finally time for me to stop drifting and focus on what I want to achieve this year.
After some consideration, I’ve opted not to do the 52 Hike Challenge for 2018. I had a blast last year exploring new-to-me trails, but, like I mentioned previously, it was stressful trying to balance finishing the challenge, spend time with friends and family for the holidays, work, and have some semblance of a social life. I may try my hand at it again down the road, but not this year.
Drumroll, please! My Objectives for 2018:
- Travel and/or Hike in other states – I took two hiking trips to the Smoky Mountains last year and one vacation to South Carolina, but the majority of my hiking was done locally in 2017 due to work and familial obligations. I already have a few out-of-state trips planned for this year (yay!), but am open to additional opportunities.
- More Tent Camping and Backpacking – Last year all of the hikes, even the super long ones like Alum Cave + Mt. LeConte, I completed were day hikes where I collapsed back at home or in a hotel room afterwards. This year I’d like to do some actual tent camping (I already have something tentatively planned for this May), but I’d also like to get out and overnight backpack. As a young, single woman, the idea of going on an overnight backpacking trip solo has personally been a little too intimidating in the past. However, I’ve started joining hiking groups, including Girls Who Hike of Tennessee, and I’m hoping to be able to be able to do some overnight hikes in a safe group environment.
- Continue with my Running Journey – Anyone who follows this blog knows I’m not really a runner, but I’ve been slowly but surely getting into it via my family and races they’ve signed me up for in the past. I have two running goals this year: Complete a race without having to stop to walk at any point (non-scale victory!) and Push myself to run longer distances/periods of time (I’m never going to be a speedster, but I can build up endurance).
- Budget, Budget, Budget! – I had to buy a new car at the end of 2017 because mine was dying a slow and painful death. I’m loving the new car so far, especially the all-wheel drive, cruise control, and plenty of space to haul things, but I’m not looking forward to my first car payment next month, or any of the subsequent ones for that matter. However, I know if I manage my money well, I’ll be able to pay all of my bills and still afford lots of fun adventures 🙂