Sunday, December 7, 2014

37 years, 100 trips, 14,500 miles, and 850 days (or so)

It's been most of my life and I may have missed some but these are the big lines (over a week or 55 miles), the important ones, and the little ones that matter.

By foot, ski, skate, paddle, and pedal.

With my wife, our kids, my friends, and on the multi-day/multisport races my rivals, and sometimes just myself.

From 1977, as a 16 year old solo hiking from Eielson Visitor Center to the Igloo over Anderson Pass, to a couple weeks ago, when Luc and I nordic skated from Selawik to Kotzebue.

From Kaktovik to the Kigluaiks, from Umnak to Yakutat.

Sure, they're not all connected (yet), but I have a few miles left in me to see the wonders of Western Alaska, float the Yukon, pedal and paddle from Cordova to Yakutat, cross from Cordova to Seward with a packraft, link Aniakchak with lake Clark. Plenty to do!

One thing to know is that many routes I did more than once, especially the Wilderness Classics. Another is that these are just quick sketches with the path tool in Google Earth. Don't use them for navigation, please!

You can also see my favorite places: Kenai's Harding Icefield, Hayes Range, Arrigetch Peaks and South-central's whitewater.

It's impossible to ever be satisfied with these "lines-on-the-map". While satisfying to draw the last trip in, like Bono says, "It's no secret that ambition bites the nails of success", and planning for the next link-up of old lines or fill-in of blanks spots (can you spell K-O-B-U-K?) is the grist of life: hope for what the future brings.

Thanks to Hig for asking for the lines on Google Earth for Erin's story in Alaska Dispatch -- otherwise they'd just hide on the Raven Map of Alaska that leans against a wall in my office....

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