I have titled this trip Glorious Failure because that’s exactly what it was. Glorious because whatever else this trip was, every step of it was truly amazing. The scenery was picture perfect, the company was first rate, and the whole experience was priceless and life changing. It had taken me a long time to get back out onto the trail and each step reminded me why I had spent so long dreaming about getting back out there. I loved every second of it.
Failure, because collectively we failed to come even close to completing the three sections we planned to hike. I think mainly due to pack weight, we struggled to reach the end of section one, which is 38 miles short of our target!! For me personally, I realized two things very quickly: Firstly, my pack weight was way too much for me to handle. I struggled to walk with it, and was worn out after just a very short distance carrying it. By the end of the hike my left knee was swollen to twice its normal size and was very painful. It took a long time for it to heal, and I still feel it to this day whenever I walk more than a few yards. Secondly, I found out real fast that my fitness was nowhere near good enough to tackle a trail of this magnitude. Combine those two things together, and you have the perfect recipe for failure; and that is exactly what happened.
And yet it was a Glorious Failure, because although I will change those two things before I go again, I wouldn’t change the experience for anything in the world and I loved every second of it. If people reading this consider me to be a raving lunatic for actually enjoying this self-induced torture, then I consider myself guilty of all charges. I learned a lot from this trip and for that I will be eternally grateful.