Sunday, May 4, 2008

AT Trip in Review: It is not the destination, it is the journey.

Day 62: 5/4.

Well today is my last day of my 2nd month out on the trail. I was hoping to write this post atleast 2 more months from now, but God has different plans for me. I truely believe everything does happen for a reason, and that God is in total control of what happens in my life. He could of easily prevented me from having this injury, but He allowed it in my life at this point on the trail. What a wonderful chapter in my life to reflect on and Lord willing tell my kids about someday!

This trip has been 8 years in the making, atleast that is how long I have wanted to do it. I feel blessed that God allowed it to happen this year, even though I didnt finish...it is more about the journey than the destination. I have gotten to know many great people that I wouldn't of... if not for this trip, such as Pastor Scott, Mac, Russel, Lakewood, Just John & all the 2008 thru-hikers that I met on this trip!

I had a wonderful time enjoying God's creation, getting back into reading God's word, meeting new people and getting to experience many cool AT traditions! Plus eating a bunch of junk food and still loosing weight!

It is difficult to really recap 2 months worth of the trail, with only having about 24 hours to reflect on it. So I will do my best & start by putting up some stats on my trip.

Food: ( ) = number of item eaten total on trip
Poptarts (124); Snickers (49); Paydays (17); Milkyways (18); Reeses (4); M&M's (7); Skittles (2); Rolo's (4); Cookies (20); Nabs (21); Ice Cream pints (5); DQ Blizzards (3); Tuna (62 oz); Tortillas (40); AYCE buffets (6); Sweet Teas (11); Eggs (14); Pancakes (6); Pizza Slices (34); Clif Bars (16); Spam singles (12); PB&J (9); Bags of chips (5); Burgers (6); Fries (6)

Spending the Night:
Shelters - 40
Hotels - 11
Tarp -3
Hostels - 5
House - 3

My favorite Places on the Trail: (#1 = most favorite)
#1 - McAfee Knob
#2 - Little Hump & Big Hump Balds
#3 - Unaka Mnt Pine Forest
#4 - Grayson Highlands
#5 - Smoky Mnt National Park
#6 - Tinker Cliffs
#7 - Max Patch
#8 - Roan Highlands
#9 - Wesser Bald Tower
#10 - Tray Mnt shelter overlook

The people I will miss most on the trail! (I met 111 thru-hikers on the trail!)
#1 - California Joe (of course!)
#2 - Pastor Scott, Ralph & Bob (The 3 Amigo's)
#3 - Burpples
#4 - Toots
#5 - Team Deustchmark (Bad Hummus, Yeti, Stovie & Toddy Bear)
#6 - Ruby Tuesday
#7 - Popeye
#8 - Dynamite
#9 - Cowboy Killer
#10 - Captain Jack

Mileage breakdown: 957.6 miles traveled in 62 days which averages 15.4 miles/day
Zero's days - 5
1-5 mile days - 1
6 - 10 mile days - 11
11 - 15 mile days - 11
16 - 20 mile days - 14
21 - 25 mile days - 13
26 - 30 mile days - 5
31 + mile days - 1

I am glad I was able to share my faith, give my testimony & talk openly about God on the trail and in my blog.

The thing that would actually bring me the most joy would be to hear that someone reading my blog or that I met on the trail, would have realized that they are a sinner, & realize their need for a Savior (to save them from their sins). And, that that person would of admitted their sin and placed their trust of salvation in Jesus Christ and His work on the cross!

If anyone has questions or concerns about their eternal destination feel free to email me, call me or even visit me if you want...our door is always open. I am sure Pastor Scott, wouldn't mind it if you contacted him as well...see the link to his blog!

"Do you not know? Have you not heard?
The Everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth
Does not become weary or tired
His understanding is inscrutable.
He gives strength to the weary,
And to him who lacks might He increases power.
Though youths grow weary and tired,
And vigorous young men stumble badly,
Yet those who wait for the LORD
Will gain new strength;
They will mount up with wings like eagles,
They will run and not get tired,
They will walk and not become weary. "

Isaiah 40: 28-31

Shepherd.

4 comments:

Mac/cgul1 said...

Well said.
Your journey and your faith stand as a shining testimony of one who follows Christ. A Blessing to me.

Many would be discouraged, but you remind us as does the passage you chose to share with us...

If any of us is discouraged and wonder if God still cares for them, let them realize that those who wait on the Lord are assured of renewed strength. It is absurd to think that He cares less for us than for the stars which He guides so unerringly.

I hope you will keep this blog going, perhaps when you start to section North (when the time is right), we can tag along again vicariously if not in person.
take care and God Bless
Mac

Anonymous said...

Hi from mom,
Well I probably read this several times tonight and am so proud you are my son. I know you wish you could of finished the trail but you have accomplished so much and the wonderful people you met and all there comments have been a joy to read. I almost feel as if I know them by reading there comments as well. Well you and amee be careful coming home. I love you both.
Love, Mom

Anonymous said...

Shepherd,
I have been truly Blessed to have been able to share this journey with you through this blog and on the trail. Hiking with Scott I have met many people and have shared many experiences. To be able to share this one with you has been special.
You have been an incredible witness in how completly you have allowed your faith to guide your journey. I will miss your posts. Keep in touch and God Bless you Brother!
Bob (3 Amigos!)

The Big Guy said...

Dear Friend,

I have been praying for you. Glad to see you are thinking about God's word. Will be interested in talking to you soon. Be of good courage friend, our God loves you and so do we.

See you back home soon.

The big guy,
Lee