Recently I read Wild by Cheryl Strayed. It’s one of those rare books that once I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down. Wild by Cheryl Strayed is a memoir of a woman who hiked 1100 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail when she was 26 years old in the summer of 1995.
The hike described in Wild by Cheryl Strayed is really about healing. At that time in her life, she had endured significant trauma. Her father had left the family when she was a child, never to return. Her mother died when she was 22. Her deep pain and confusion led her into promiscuity that destroyed her marriage, and finally to heroin addiction.
Something inside her must have known that she desperately needed a way to save her own life. She found that path by stepping onto the Pacific Crest Trail in California’s Mohave Desert and hiking 1100 miles through California and Oregon until she reached the border of Washington State.
By the time I finished reading Wild by Cheryl Strayed, I was so inspired, I decided that I wanted to do something very similar and hike the 750 miles of Colorado’s Continental Divide Trail.
Fortunately my mother, Lora Davis, is an expert on the subject, having written the official guide to hiking Wyoming’s Continental Divide Trail. She did a through-hike for two and a half months in order to write the guide.
Okay, so I admit I’m not as brave as the 26-year-old hiker in Wild by Cheryl Strayed, but also not as naive. I’d prefer to take an expert hiker with me on the trail as I learn the ropes, but she will only be with me for a month and 350 miles. After that, I’m on my own!
To follow our journey from preparation and planning to execution, check out our blog at Colorado Summer 2015.