So like most hiker and outdoor enthusiasts I bet you spend most of your day wondering about your next gear purchase, or researching an item your going to buy or better yet watching the UPS Tracking screen at work waiting for the box from REI to arrive at your doorstep. SICKO! Its okay, I do the same thing!
This my friends is your lucky day. What if I told you that you could get the excitement of Christmas morning, every month. You to can get an awesome assortment of outdoor gear sent to your house for the low low price of $25.00 a month and can get that amazing feeling of wondering... "whats in the box?".
So, I have to be honest I got my first Cairn box as a complimentary item from they great people at Cairn who are helping to sponsor Hell Hike and Raft. Rob Little, Cairn's Founder, I think has come up with a great idea for us gearheads who love gear mail. In this little box, I received well over twenty-five dollar's worth of awesome gear.
Gear that came in my Cairn Package:
Hydro Flask 12oz. Standard Mouth - $20
Old Ephraim StrapGear 10” Blueberry Blue - $9(2pack)
Honey Stringer Honey Waffle 1oz package – ($22 –Box of 16)
Mosquitno Adult Size All Natural Wristband - $4
Joshua Tree Hiker’s Salve Organic Unscented – ($17- 1.7oz)
Want more info about Cairn?
Curious what I will be experiencing in just over four months? Well check this out.
Jealous aren't you? Stay tuned for more about our upcoming epic adventure... Hell Hike & Raft.
Keep Hiking Forward
But Seven? Yes in just over four months (as you can now see from our handy-dandy countdown ticker) I along with thirteen of my new best friends will be taking on and and coming face to face with the Seven Devils. (insert scary horror music here)
As I have never been to this area of the country for hiking I have to rely on those brave souls who have taken on these devils and lived to tell about them. Below is a link to a newspaper article from 2013 that best sums up the experience of a hiker as he took on mountains by the names of She Devil, The Ogre, The Goblin, Twin Imps, Devil’s Throne, Devil’s Tooth, etc.
Idaho's Seven Devils and one hell of a hike - Idaho Statesman by Roger Phillips
What the hell did I just get myself into? Don't they know there is nothing wrong with naming mountains after dead presidents or famous people of the past? Yikes!
Keep Hiking Forward
For years I have been bugging my wife for a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited. YEARS! I drove her insane! It got so bad that in the car as a family (well minus the wife of course) me and the girls played JEEP!!! Instead of "punchbuggy" or "slugbug" we played JEEP!!! JEEP is a far superior game to those other silly Volkswagen games. My girls know the difference between a hardtop, softtop Jeep and know you get extra points for calling out a "naked jeep" (thats one with the top down in the summer - for you non-jeepers). My girls also know the ultimate score is the infamous and elusive "ultra naked jeep" (top down and no doors) that is cause for major points! The girls even know to grunt like Tim the "Tool Man" Taylor when we see a "Beefy" Rubicon with big beefy tires. Hrggggg hrghhh hrhggg hrggg hrgggg!
Finally in January, the long wait was over, the dream became a reality and our new adventure vehicle came home with us. We are now the new and proud owners of a Mango Tango Jeep Unlimited Sahara. The wife can't do much wrong for a while. I wasn't sure who was more excited me or the girls when we got the Jeep. They would sigh when the wife would pick them up or take them to school in her car. They didn't want to be seen in her ride any more they wanted the Jeep. I have taken over chauffeur duties at their request.
The past months have been great getting used to the Jeep. I even took "George" (will explain the name in second) on his first adventure in February on my first camping trip of the year. George or better yet Mr. "A" (Anderson) was my Scoutmaster growing up. I figured he took us all over and everywhere on all sorts of adventures as young scouts. Had it not been for Mr. A, I would have never reached my goal of becoming an Eagle Scout or been the outdoor nut I am today. And so knowing that this Jeep can take me anywhere we dubbed it George, after all the Jeep slogan is "Go Anywhere".
Even the girls call the Jeep by George now. "Daddy, George needs a wash he is dirty". "Daddy are we taking George to school today...Rightttt". Ahh it warms my heart. However, something has happened recently, that even I didn't know about owning a Jeep and I thought I had researched everything about the vehicle. If you remember I was slightly obsessed. Only slightly. :)
While driving around about a month back the wife asked what I was doing. "Who was that you waved at"? she asked. My response, "my brother". Perplexed, because my brother lives 1200 miles away. She needed an explanation. I had to explain the "Jeep Wave" (Urban Dictionary defines as: When two jeep wranglers pass each other on opposite sides of the road, one of the drivers initiates the wave and the other waves back symbolism some sort of bondage between jeep owners.)
I gotta tell yeah I love this. Especially on those days when stuff isn't going right, or your in a hurry and all of a sudden you look down the road and see another Jeep coming towards you, and then they wave and you wave back. Its an awesome feeling of knowing that there are other like-minded adventure seekers (brothers and sisters) out there just like you. The wife thought that this was some freak occurrence and that the other Jeep owner was only waving because I waved and they were being polite, so she made me wait... they still waved! HA!
So to all you fellow like-minded, Jeep owning brothers and sister adventure seekers out there... I'm waving at yeah!
Keep Hiking & Waving Forward
So recently I was asked why is your blog entitled "Hiking Forward"? Why not hikerjunkie or adventure dude or hiking maniac? (my apologies if any of these are your Twitter handles or actual blog title).
I have spent a few days pondering this idea and question as well as trying to organize my thoughts so that it could be understood. First, some background like most people I too have faced many changes some good and some not so good in my life. I have seen the loss of many people very close to me, namely my dad who passed five years ago unexpectedly. These moments in life remind me of the ebb and flow while hiking.
I see life as a trail, some days its grey, dark and full of fog and others you find a pile of trail magic and a wonderfully magically mountain vista that lifts your spirits and gives you a reason to live on and take another step. Life can can be lived or you can sit and watch other people live it.
"Get busy living, or get busy dying" Andy DuFresene - Shawshank Redemption
In life we all see adversity, tragedy, pain, love and joy. How we all deal with it is what matters. I have chosen to get busy living and not get busy dying. One of my favorite movies of all time Shawshank Redemption, reminds me that no matter how dark and horrible things can be tomorrow is another day and can it can be truly amazing. The sight of Andy smiling while working on his boat on the beach of the Pacific while his friend Red walks up the beach to greet him after his long journey... gets me every time.
Crawling up into a ball after the bad doesn't make you feel better, doesn't solve your problems, but living and living big will fill you with the medicine your body, soul and heart need. Sharing your love of something so pure and simple like being outdoors with the ones you love and the one's you haven''t met who are like-minded is an amazing thing. My father was a priest in the Armenian church, each Sunday he would get up and offer up a sermon and encourage his parish to follow a certain path and to be good to one another. I am not a priest, hardly! But I want to follow a path, and I want to encourage others to take up their own path of rock or dirt to find that inner peace, experience the external beautiful and friendly camaraderie with their fellow hiker.
Hiking Forward is about living, not about hiking everyday, but staying on your own path of life so that you can take advantage of the days when you do get to experience the dirt, rock, water, clean air and good friends.
Keep Hiking Forward
Well if you have been paying attention to either my twitter feed @scottcgauvin or my Hiking Forward Facebook page in the past couple of weeks you have probably noticed me talking up this adventure. Adam from Hikingthetrail.com is the brains behind this operation. He is working to get 14 like-minded adventurous outdoor-loving blogging souls together for an epic social and outdoor adventure. In September "The Crew" will head to northern Idaho to take part in an six day adventure with three days on the rapids of the Snake River and three days backpacking the area around Hells Canyon. The purpose of Hell Hike and Raft is to take 14 people of different backgrounds on this adventure and have them share their experiences with everyone. This project will allow us to challenge the group, ourselves individually, the guides, and our gear.
Each member of the crew will blog about the upcoming adventure, their personal preparations, blog while on the trip and about the gear they test during the adventure. I am extremely excited to meet the other crew members and take this journey together. I encourage you to stay tuned to Hiking Forward for more information and details of this epic adventure as they are released. In addition to
my outlets make sure to watch the hashtag #hellhikeandraft for more details from all the crew members about the upcoming adventure.
Keep Hiking Forward
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