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“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.” ~Albert Einstein
Lessons from the trail
By Sari Huhtala
If you are seeking solitude or a break from the concrete jungle, an escape to nature has the capacity to clear the mind, dissolve stress and nurture the spirit. In Japan spending time in nature is actually a wellness therapy they call forest bathing. If you are seeking to develop mindfulness in your life, take a hike. Hiking is a lot like life; you never quite know what’s at the top of that gruelling forest ridge you are climbing, but if you never tried, you’d never actually find out.
"It feels good to be lost in the right direction."
Hiking enthusiasts would appreciate the ruggedness of the Ottawa Temiskaming Highland Trail – a portion of which spans 84 km from Temagami through to Latchford following the Ottawa River – a trail which I set out to hike with a friend last August – twice. I love how the universe collaborates to bring together circumstances that may not otherwise manifest. With overgrown brush covering a main marker we ended up lost in the Temagami forest the first time around. We had mistaken a forest company’s marked trees for part of the trail and landed ourselves deep into the forest before realizing our oversight. Thankfully the lodge owner we hired to drop us off at the trail head, Doug Adams of Northland Paradise Lodge, loaned us a SPOT satellite GPS messenger so he was able to see, on his computer, where we were and advise us to head east, then eventually north to locate the trail.
"If you have no expectations, you can never be disappointed".
Otherwise I think we’d still be there. And thankfully we found points with cell phone reception to be able to communicate with him. We lost two days and decided to head back at a later date to complete the trail We ended up hiring Temagami Outfitting Co. to pick us up from the trailhead once we found our way back. When we arrived at the outfitter’s post, I struck up a conversation with a man standing outside. He, Raven, told me he is Lakota and he and his wife are medicine walkers. He started talking about healing with cancer and I mentioned I publish Alive+Fit and his eyes widened. He went on to explain that a year ago he met a woman who told him all about me and Alive+Fit and she had stressed that he needed to get in touch with me. He had told her “If spirit wants me to connect with her, she will find me.” And I did. I guess you could say I really wasn’t lost; I was just looking for Raven.
If you would like to read on check out the Summer Issue of Alive & Fit (page 24).