No, I’m not talking about those people. Not talking about concrete bunkers. Nor the zombie apocalypse. I’m talking about being ready to pick up and go. Planning an adventure. Whether it be the weekend camp trip or a cross Canada jaunt. Just getting out into the world. The unknown.
I don’t know about you, but when I read about interesting tours in a guide, I tend just to look at all the pictures and skim the rest. Strike one for me. It just doesn’t seem to sink in. I guess, I feel as though I don’t have enough time to read the small print. Sometimes, they can read more like your Mum’s meatloaf recipe. It just doesn’t stoke my imagination. Sometimes, I’m just sick of all the small print in general! Most of my trips I hear about, are through other individuals and their excitement is infectious. Researching each of those little lines can save a lot of hassle and head scratching in the long run.
Certain people learn through the process of doing. Some will take the gamble and pack what they think they need. They will take the hard road and learn through experience. Others might augment their knowledge by taking a course, reading a book and/or watching some youtube for ideas. Also, pairing up with somebody who knows the ropes can be of great help. But buyer beware, there can be some very misleading information out there. There are few standards present and ultimately you will not know what works, if you don’t put yourself into those situations.
Some people are totally unprepared. Clueless. I bumped into a few of them on the last hike I did. It’s a popular trail, but also a very demanding one. I don’t know how they came to the decision to travel it or didn’t hear the piles of warnings in the mandatory orientation. They over-estimated how far they would travel in a day over very rough terrain. Under-packed for a party of three. They forgot a sleeping bag at a campsite. Only by the courtesy and alertness of other campers they had it returned. Doubling up in very close quarters for heat and sleep? No thank you, I’ll save that for emergencies. The point I’m making, is that everybody on the trail, who could see this inexperience, was now having to keep an eye on them and worry about them. If they so chose. What if they were alone and making these mistakes?
Often travelers bring major assumptions and mind sets on how a certain place will be. These locales are generally neutral. It’s what you make them. The skills, knowledge and research, will make all the difference. It’s being willing to accept some adversity and hardship for unknown rewards. For those memorable surprises that can’t be scripted. For pictures that turn out to be timeless. To feel like you’re pushing the edges of your boundaries and living life. Who wouldn’t want that?