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Hiking Quotes

Quotes tagged as "hiking" Showing 1-30 of 213
John Muir
“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity”
John Muir, Our National Parks

Cheryl Strayed
“It had nothing to do with gear or footwear or the backpacking fads or philosophies of any particular era or even with getting from point A to point B.

It had to do with how it felt to be in the wild. With what it was like to walk for miles with no reason other than to witness the accumulation of trees and meadows, mountains and deserts, streams and rocks, rivers and grasses, sunrises and sunsets. The experience was powerful and fundamental. It seemed to me that it had always felt like this to be a human in the wild, and as long as the wild existed it would always feel this way.”
Cheryl Strayed, Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

“Returning home is the most difficult part of long-distance hiking; You have grown outside the puzzle and your piece no longer fits.”
Cindy Ross

Rebecca Solnit
“I love going out of my way, beyond what I know, and finding my way back a few extra miles, by another trail, with a compass that argues with the map…nights alone in motels in remote western towns where I know no one and no one I know knows where I am, nights with strange paintings and floral spreads and cable television that furnish a reprieve from my own biography, when in Benjamin’s terms, I have lost myself though I know where I am. Moments when I say to myself as feet or car clear a crest or round a bend, I have never seen this place before. Times when some architectural detail on vista that has escaped me these many years says to me that I never did know where I was, even when I was home.”
Rebecca Solnit, A Field Guide to Getting Lost

Frédéric Gros
“None of your knowledge, your reading, your connections will be of any use here: two legs suffice, and big eyes to see with. Walk alone, across mountains or through forests. You are nobody to the hills or the thick boughs heavy with greenery. You are no longer a role, or a status, not even an individual, but a body, a body that feels sharp stones on the paths, the caress of long grass and the freshness of the wind. When you walk, the world has neither present nor future: nothing but the cycle of mornings and evenings. Always the same thing to do all day: walk. But the walker who marvels while walking (the blue of the rocks in a July evening light, the silvery green of olive leaves at noon, the violet morning hills) has no past, no plans, no experience. He has within him the eternal child. While walking I am but a simple gaze.”
Frédéric Gros, A Philosophy of Walking

Ed Viesturs
“Getting to the top is optional. Getting down is mandatory.”
Ed Viesturs, No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks

Bill Bryson
“What on earth would I do if four bears came into my camp? Why, I would die of course. Literally shit myself lifeless.”
Bill Bryson, A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail

Jack Kerouac
“Jumping from boulder to boulder and never falling, with a heavy pack, is easier than it sounds; you just can't fall when you get into the rhythm of the dance.”
Jack Kerouac, The Dharma Bums

Amit Kalantri
“You need mountains, long staircases don't make good hikers.”
Amit Kalantri, Wealth of Words

Edward Abbey
“A crude meal, no doubt, but the best of all sauces is hunger.”
Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire

Cheryl Strayed
“How fabulous down was for those first minutes! Down, down, down I'd go until down too became impossible and punishing and so relentless that I'd pray for the trail to go back up. Going down, I realized was like taking hold of the loose strand of yarn on a sweater you'd just spent hours knitting and pulling it until the entire sweater unraveled into a pile of string. Hiking the PCT was the maddening effort of knitting that sweater and unraveling it over and over again. As if everything gained was inevitably lost.”
Cheryl Strayed, Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

Edward Abbey
“Within minutes my 115-mile walk through the desert hills becomes a thing apart, a disjunct reality on the far side of a bottomless abyss, immediately beyond physical recollection.

But it’s all still there in my heart and soul. The walk, the hills, the sky, the solitary pain and pleasure—they will grow larger, sweeter, lovelier in the days to come, like a treasure found and then, voluntarily, surrendered. Returned to the mountains with my blessing. It leaves a golden glowing on the mind.”
Edward Abbey, Beyond the Wall: Essays from the Outside

“The old school of thought would have you believe that you'd be a fool to take on nature without arming yourself with every conceivable measure of safety and comfort under the sun. But that isn't what being in nature is all about. Rather, it's about feeling free, unbounded, shedding the distractions and barriers of our civilization—not bringing them with us.”
Ryel Kestenbaum, The Ultralight Backpacker: The Complete Guide to Simplicity and Comfort on the Trail

M.J. Eberhart
“The long distance hiker, a breed set apart,
From the likes of the usual pack.
He’ll shoulder his gear, be hittin’ the trail;
Long gone, long ‘fore he’ll be back.”
M.J. Eberhart

Jenn Bennett
“We?"
"You and me, yes."
"The two of us hiking to Condor Peak? Alone?"
"I wasn't planning on inviting the bear along, but if you think we need a chaperone..”
Jenn Bennett, Starry Eyes

Frédéric Gros
“Walking causes a repetitive, spontaneous poetry to rise naturally to the lips, words as simple as the sound of footsteps on the road. There also seems to be an echo of walking in the practice of two choruses singing a psalm in alternate verses, each on a single note, a practice that makes it possible to chant and listen by turns. Its main effect is one of repetition and alternation that St Ambrose compared to the sound of the sea: when a gentle surf is breaking quietly on the shore the regularity of the sound doesn’t break the silence, but structures it and renders it audible. Psalmody in the same way, in the to-and-fro of alternating responses, produces (Ambrose said) a happy tranquillity in the soul. The echoing chants, the ebb and flow of waves recall the alternating movement of walking legs: not to shatter but to make the world’s presence palpable and keep time with it. And just as Claudel said that sound renders silence accessible and useful, it ought to be said that walking renders presence accessible and useful.”
Frédéric Gros, A Philosophy of Walking

“what it is...is a place where I can return to myself. It's enough of a scramble to get to...that the energy expended is significant, and it translates into a change in my body chemistry and my psychological chemistry and my heart chemistry...”
Jay Salter

“Do you know how fast you are walking? ... To get a close estimate, count the number of steps you take in a minute and divide by 30... :)”
Albina Fabiani

Bill Bryson
“A significant fraction of thru-hikers reach Katahdin, then turn around and start back to Georgia. They just can't stop walking, which kind of makes you wonder.”
Bill Bryson, A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail

Rebecca Solnit
“Of course women's walking is often construed as performance rather than transport, with the implication that women walk not to see but to be seen, not for their own experience but for that of a male audience, which means that they are asking for whatever attention they receive.”
Rebecca Solnit, Wanderlust: A History of Walking

Frédéric Gros
“But walking causes absorption. Walking interminably, taking in through your pores the height of the mountains when you are confronting them at length, breathing in the shape of the hills for hours at a time during a slow descent. The body becomes steeped in the earth it treads. And thus, gradually, it stops being in the landscape: it becomes the landscape. That doesn’t have to mean dissolution, as if the walker were fading away to become a mere inflection, a footnote. It’s more a flashing moment: sudden flame, time catching fire. And here, the feeling of eternity is all at once that vibration between presences. Eternity, here, in a spark.”
Frédéric Gros, A Philosophy of Walking

Frédéric Gros
“Blinding, mineral, shattering silence. You hear nothing but the quiet crunch of stones underfoot. An implacable, definitive silence, like a transparent death. Sky of a perfectly detached blue. You advance with eyes down, reassuring yourself sometimes with a silent mumbling. Cloudless sky, limestone slabs filled with presence: silence nothing can sidestep. Silence fulfilled, vibrant immobility, tensed like a bow. There’s the silence of early morning. For long routes in autumn you have to start very early. Outside everything is violet, the dim light slanting through red and gold leaves. It is an expectant silence. You walk softly among huge dark trees, still swathed in traces of blue night. You are almost afraid of awakening. Everything whispering quietly. There’s the silence of walks through the snow, muffled footsteps under a white sky. All around you nothing moves. Things and even time itself are iced up, frozen solid in silent immobility. Everything is stopped, unified, thickly padded. A watching silence, white, fluffy, suspended as if in parentheses.”
Frédéric Gros, A Philosophy of Walking

Robert Macfarlane
“Several small clouds drifted through the sky. When one of them passed before the moon, the world's filter changed. First my hands were silver and the ground was black. Then my hands were black and the ground silver. So we switched, as I walked, from negative to positive to negative, as the clouds passed before the moon.”
Robert Macfarlane, The Wild Places

Jennifer Pharr Davis
“In Massachusetts and Vermont, there had been plenty of mosquitoes, but in New Hampshire, they had reinforcements.”
Jennifer Pharr Davis, Becoming Odyssa: Adventures on the Appalachian Trail

“You long to go ito nature because nature doesn't care about you. To be clear, it's not that nature sees you, accepts you for who you are, and loves you anyway: nature just doesn't give a shit about you.”
Diana Helmuth, How to Suffer Outside: A Beginner's Guide to Hiking and Backpacking

Ilaria Gaspari
“Caminhar, quando se está triste, até que os sapatos incomodem, é uma daquelas iniciativas que a levam à força para fora de você, no mundo; que freiam a espiral dos pensamentos e fazem você se sentir antes de tudo livre, depois exausta. Dois antídotos para tristeza, não infalíveis, mas úteis, são o sentimento da liberdade e o da exaustão; a tristeza, para se sustentar e durar, requer espaços fechados, sufocantes, e energia. Como os vampiros, ela também teme a luz do sol.”
Ilaria Gaspari, Lezioni di felicità: Esercizi filosofici per il buon uso della vita

Bex Band
“I found that starting to hike was like pulling off a plaster: better to do it quickly and not hang about.”
Bex Band, Three Stripes South
tags: hiking

“Mr. Muir, someone told me you did not approve of the word 'hike,' is that so?" His blue eyes flashed, and with his Scotch accent he replied: I don't like either the word or the thing. People ought to saunter in the mountains - not hike! Do you know the origin of that word 'saunter?' It's a beautiful word. Away back in the Middle Ages people used to go on pilgrimages to the Holy Land, and when people in the villages through which they passed asked where they were going, they would reply, 'A la sainte terre,' 'To the Holy Land.' And so they became known as sainte-terre-ers or saunterers. Now these mountains are our Holy Land, and we ought to saunter through them reverently, not 'hike' through them. - John Muir, quoted by Albert W. Palmer in "The Mountain Trail and its Message." Pilgrim Press, 1911.”
Albert W. Palmer

Paula Munier
“Every morning they marched off their grief mile after mile in the mountains, where the cool greens of the forest could chase away the dark ghosts of the desert, at least until night fell.

but not today. today the wilderness held a hush that unnerved her, the same sort of hush that Martinez always called a disturbance in the Force when they went out on patrol. Bad things usually followed.”
Paula Munier, A Borrowing of Bones
tags: hiking

“Strategy is as important as ability”
Tommy Caldwell, The Push: A Climber's Journey of Endurance, Risk, and Going Beyond Limits

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