Saturday, February 9, 2008

Andy's Great Western Loop

Lauren, Andy and Ben

While we were hiking our 2,174 miles this summer, Andrew Skurka was tackling a 6,875 mile journey of his own, the so-called Great Western Loop. Lauren and I took the LA Metro Rail to Long Beach yesterday to hear Andy give an overview of his trip.

As a thru-hiker, it is fascinating for me to hear fellow hikers tackle the all encompasing question, "So, how was your trip?" I mean, how do you begin to sum up a trip of such magnitude, with all of the intense highs and lows?

Andy is an organized presenter, and his photography is quite good, which meant the 50 minutes went by too quickly for me. I think Andy did a good job of conveying the exuberance of great moments, and what it feels like to push through intense adversity. I think I would have enjoyed hearing more about the connection he felt to the landscape.

In 2006, when Andy was giving a recap in SoCal about his Sea-to-Sea hike, I took the opportunity to go for a day hike with him in the San Gabriels. Andy is a focused and driven person with an approachable demeanor, and I very much enjoyed my time with him.

Congratulations on accomplishing your goal, Andy.

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