The slowest fast (or fastest slow) way to make memories, meet people and experience local culture and local habits – hiking. I have been blessed to experience some of the most breathtaking hikes in the world – here are some of my favorites and some words on how I prepare for – and experience hikes.
Why hiking in the first place? You get tired, dirty and it is often nowhere near fancy hotels. Yet, you get to see some amazing, hidden, most beautiful spots in the world in a pace that allows you to fully immerse in the local culture.
Over the years, I have learned that hiking makes me instantly disconnect from my work. Instead of thinking about work, I’m focussing on the question if I have enough water. Rather than Facebooking, I’m figuring out what food to eat best. Cities tend to have the opposite effect for me – I get distracted, get work inspiration from things I see and stay in my normal routine – pretty much exactly what I wasn’t looking for. Nature has become a balance to my city life.
That time I ended up making friends with a local Bedouin. That time when I ended up in a snowstorm in Iceland with Ukranian athletes. Hiking the Amalfi coast and discovering it’s amazing Italian food. My Jordan Trail experience and how I finished Dana to Petra despite illness, getting lost and flash floods. The time my brother and I got completely lost in the English moors near Manchester. Hiking creates amazing memories.
I spend a lot of time planning and preparing my hikes – finding the best possible hikes for every time of year, and continuously tweaking my gear and packing lists. I developed my favorite pieces of hiking gear, my favorite food on the trail, my preferred way of cooking, my morning routine, my evening routine, my hygiene routine and also specific hiking gear hacks (including hairnets and duct tape on my trekking poles).
I can spend hours on optimising my packing lists. And at least as much time optimising my gear. Cleaning it. Looking for better gear. Tweaking. Polishing. Repairing. So here’s to the noble art of choosing your gear wisely. I love my Allbirds, my Icebreaker, my compression bags.
I have been lucky enough to do some amazing hikes: the Kumano Kodo in Japan, the Laugavegur Trail and Fimmvörðuháls trail in Iceland, the Jordan Trail in Jordan, the Amalfi Coast. Here are some reviews of my favorite hikes:
Summiting Mount Kilimanjaro.
My Lemosho route hike to Uhuru peak.
The magic of the old pilgrimage trail.
Remote trail through the desert.
The stunning landscape of the Laugavegur and Fimmvordurals trails.
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