Before I moved, I was hitting up my favorite Metroparks in the Greater Toledo area on a regular basis. I could walk on trails in the woods, meadows, and even swampy areas. One of my favorites is a boardwalk with an observation deck at the end of it. I still go on them when I go home to visit.
When I moved to NY I found myself primarily walking along the trails that follow the Erie Canal. I also discovered the joys of hiking up and down the glacier-carved hills of Mt. Hope Cemetery, as well as the historical fascination. (People like Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass are buried there.)
A year ago, I discovered a book about hiking in the Greater Rochester area and decided I should check it out. I hit up a couple of trails, only to burst a cyst and later require minor surgery. Flash forward six months and introduce a new friend who is much more hardcore. He actually gets pleasure out of hiking in the snow and freezing cold. The steeper and more remote the hills the better. And who cares about trails? Start on one and end up on another.
Thanks to him, I now have real hiking boots and two new coats and am kicking my own ass hitting up hills and trails. I mistakenly believed that I needed to follow him along these treks, to push myself. But now I am hitting up hills like this one, all by myself.
I love the feeling of accomplishment that I get when I discover or conquer a new trail. I love the peace and quiet of the outdoors. And I love that stiffness in my body when I have gone too long without hitting another one.