National Trails Day, American Hiking Society, Wilderness Press

Stream of Consciousness Before National Trails Day

Before National Trails Day

Oh man, National Trails Day is coming up. Wait, that means it’s almost June! Where has this year gone?

Anyway. National Trails Day. What am I doing next weekend? Nothing that is more important than National Trails Day! I wonder what my friends are doing next weekend. We need to get out there and do our part to protect the trails. Should I plan my own event? Try to get everyone together in the same spot? Divide and conquer so we cover more miles of trail?

We need snacks. Who will bring snacks? And drinks of course. But no alcohol on the trails. Not with sharp objects around. Also not allowed. We will save that for after. And costumes! We need to dress the part. But what? Superheroes! Trail superheroes. In long sleeves and pants to protect our skin. Minus the cape. For safety.

During National Trails Day

Today is the day! The day of our people! We are ready to rock and roll! Or move some rocks and roll some wheelbarrows. Same thing.

Look at how excited everyone looks! How energetic! This will be such a fun and productive day!

Ok. It’s getting a little hot. And my arms are tired from pulling vines. My back also hurts from bending over picking up trash. Why do so many people throw their trash in the woods? How terrible. How inconsiderate. They’re the worst.

Snack break. Photo op. Everyone is dirty. Everyone is tired. But we are doing this! It’s National Trails Day and we are helping make this trail better for everyone.

It’s been 6 hours. Time to call it a day. Cleaning trails is hard work. We take so much for granted when trails just magically get built and stay maintained. It takes a team to keep trails in good shape. National Trails Day is important, but we should do this more often! Once a quarter! Once a month! Once a week!

But first, I nap.

After National Trails Day

Wow. I feel so accomplished! We worked so hard to make this little slice of the Earth a more beautiful place. And this happened all over the country. So many people were out there . American Hiking Society must be so happy!

American Hiking Society. That’s right. I have to report back to American Hiking Society how many miles of trail I cleaned! I took a pledge!

I wonder exactly how many miles we cleaned. 5? 10? 15? It felt like 15 by the time we were walking back to the cars dragging the bags overflowing with trash. Got to check my GPS watch.

4.7 miles. Only 4.7 miles? Dang it. That seems so…short in relation to the amount of hours we put in.

Though I guess 4.7 miles is a lot after all. That trail needed some serious cleaning. It will be better for everyone now. And thinking about how many thousands of people cleaned only 4.7 miles makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. Surely American Hiking Society will reach their goal of cleaning 2,802 miles of trail. We will have made a difference.

Tanya Twerdowsky

I am a Jersey girl living in Alabama who loves to run far and eat lots.

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