A year ago today, I began a journey in the mountains, and a few weeks later, I began this blog. This was one of my first posts and it continues to ring true.
I just turned 50, which is the same age my mother was when my father died. I also had a total hip replacement in December of 2013. These events, coupled with my own near-death experience as a child, have taught me that life is fleeting, and it’s important to spend time doing the things that matter to you when you can.
Since my son and I have always loved backpacking, I proposed a journey: We would spend 11 days hiking in the high mountains surrounding Mont Blanc in France, Italy and Switzerland. The circuit, if we could complete it, would take 108 miles of walking and more than 30,000 feet of elevation gain and loss, and we would carry all of our necessities save breakfasts and dinners.
We knew it would be a stretch. I had hiked since my total hip replacement surgery in 2013, with a pack and without…
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