These days, numerous gadgets, ever-present Internet, TV,
radio, and people at work, on the streets, and in other places create way too
much artificial noise and often prevent our mind from being at peace. Hiking,
especially in quiet, solitary places, allows for a break from all of that.
Discover natural beauty.
We have been on over a hundred of hikes and made over ten
thousand photographs. Yet, there are still moments when the jaw drops both
figuratively, and, sometimes, even literally, and an uncontrollable “wow” flies
out. There are so many amazing natural views out there, that both your eyes and
your soul would have plenty to feast on, no matter how long you hike.
Going up and down mountain trails, and even walking on flat
stretches, burns them calories. Hiking also strengthens legs, and, if you've got hiking
poles, even the upper body. Hiking poles are also very handy for keeping balance
and giving a break for your knees, especially on the way down.
Develop mental toughness.
Your feet may be wet and tired, the backpack too heavy, the
path too steep and too long, the sun too hot, the mosquitoes too brutal, and yet you keep on going. There was an episode we have witnessed, which is described in our Grouse Grind
trip report, where a mother, in reply to her tired little son’s “how much
longer?”, said matter-of-factly: “About forty minutes. On you go.” Won’t grow up
a sissy boy, will he?
something to look forward to.
The daily routine can get dreary, especially in the dead of
winter. Looking at those thousands of photographs and anticipating the next
hiking season makes it that much easier.
Our Top 5 Downsides of Hiking:
By far, the worst downside of hiking is getting hurt. Over the
years, we have tripped and fell numerous times, lost a fair bit of skin,
suffered countless cuts to hands and feet, developed a long-term knee pain
(which took several years to heal) from running downhill (bad idea), had tree branches try to whack our eyes, and
even bloodied our mouth several times after tripping and falling forward onto a hiking pole stuck in the ground where we placed it half a second
earlier. There were three very dangerous falls backwards onto stones. Numerous
rolled ankles. Several slips on wet stones, resulting in unplanned creek-dipping
sessions. A dry tree branch once fell down like a missile about ten meters away
from where we were hiking. Good times.
Other non-exclusive threats to your health and well-being
while hiking include: mosquitoes, ticks, sunburn, dehydration and hypothermia.
Some folks might also have a medical condition, which would
make it unsafe for them to hike. If unsure, check with your doctor.
Our biggest expense is gasoline. Getting to trails and back
can get quite expensive. Quality hiking gear costs a pretty penny too:
breathable odour-resistant top layers, hiking
boots, hiking poles, hiking socks, emergency supplies, etc.
It takes time getting to and from the trails, and hiking
itself can be very time-consuming.
Now that we have a GPS, this isn’t much of an issue, and it
has never been a major issue prior to that, but getting lost on the way back,
even if for a few minutes, had been a less than pleasant experience.
Bears are awesome animals, and chances are extremely high
that a bear would be much more scared of a hiker, than the other way around. Yet,
there are news reports every year of bears attacking people in the wilderness. That said, the
chance of such an attack is much smaller than a chance of getting seriously hurt in some
This mama bear looks cute, but all bears are potentially very dangerous -
Be Bear Aware (external site)
The following online outlets sell hiking gear and supplies:
Mapbooks - British Columbia wilderness maps in paper and GPS formats.
Cabela's - just about anything for just about any outdoors adventure.
Coleman Canada - hiking and camping supplies.
Columbia Sportswear - mostly clothing and footwear.
Mountain Hardwear - clothing and equipment.
Patagonia - clothing and equipment.
ihikebc.com -> Top 5 Reasons
To Hike (And Top 5 Downfalls of Hiking)