Toad: What I Have Learned

Imagine our surprise to see familiar faces while hiking on the Appalachian Trail in New England.  Hiking toward us were Derek and Shannon who run the Hiker Hostel in Georgia where Chief and I stayed in April before starting our A.T. hike on Day 1.

I specifically remember Day 1 after breakfast when Derek loaded the anxious hikers and our gear into the van. As he drove us to the southern terminus of the trail for our drop off, Derek prophetically said, “Prepare to have your life changed.”  I contemplated what that statement might entail and hoped it would be in a good way.  168 days later, I think I can share…

What I have learned while hiking the Appalachian Trail:

Rattlesnakes don’t always bite but are really scary.

How to hang a bear bag.

What a moldering privy is.

How to bathe in a stream with two inches of running water.

To have a greater appreciation for the blessing of a home – indoor plumbing, a bed, roof over our heads, and a kitchen.

To live more simply, with few possessions.  To be joyful even in difficult circumstances.

To be humbled, since we didn’t often smell very good, yet people graciously helped us.

That people are extremely generous with the fundraising for the “Hike For John”.

To spend quality time with Jesus in prayer and meditation.

To not be such a pain to my husband (still a work in progress).

Greater appreciation for family and friends and the amazing support they provide to me.

To be still and free from worldly distractions and expectations.  To enjoy the moment.

That I miss coffee. 😀

Sincerely, Toad

– – –

Read the post from Chief about what he has learned.





6 thoughts on “Toad: What I Have Learned

  1. Those are valuable lessons that take a life time to learn. I am going to reccomend a book to you to read when you are off the trail. It is a wonderful about a granny who hiked with very primitive gear and started when she was quite old. I’ll send you the title. God richest blessing son you both.


  2. No matter what form of “hiking” our tour through life presents, there is always what we learn about ourselves, rather than what we learn about others. God Bless you, Auntie Jo loves you just like you are.


  3. Sounds like you both had a successful conclusion toyour hike ….I appreciate what you say of the lessons learned from this hike.  OUr best to you both Dennis & Marsha….the Hot Doggers from Goose Pond Rd.


  4. Those are great lessons. I’m sure you will never be the same; you will be even better! May the last 200 miles go quickly! Praying for you.


  5. Always great to read your story. What an adventure. All our prayers are with you and also with John and his family. Our church is also in prayer for John. It will be fun when we meet again. Leaving on October 21st for my next A.T. hike. (Hot Springs to Damascus)
    Chief 2 Feathers


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