Walking to RDU – Well, Almost

The previous night I stuffed my backpack with items I plan to lug across the country between January and June 2018. And though the contents added up to nearly 30 pounds, they mostly resembled what I’d haul on a two night, no-frills camping trip. The basic essentials including a day’s worth of high-calorie snacks and 6 total liters of water. Turns out one liter of water weighs 2.2 lbs—which means nearly half my pack’s total weight is water. Hopefully, once I get on the road, I never go too long without this much water on my person. I can already…

My Privilege to Walk

Thoreau writes in his essay, Walking, “I wish to speak a moment a word for nature.” I too wish to speak a moment, but not for nature, even if my topic is often mistaken for something natural. I want to recognize that embarking on a 7-month, non-work-related journey is a full-on exploitation of my individual privilege. This understanding makes my innate desire for travel and adventure quite problematic. Fact is I’m conflicted by my nearly unlimited access to ease that comes with having white skin and a penis. It’s not guilt I’m feeling, nor is it a biased form of…

Home is Where I Lay My Head Down

For 175 days and spanning the life of 13 pairs of shoes, Kent Treptow woke up every morning to do one thing – walk. If you’re like most folks he encountered along the way, right now you’re wondering why he’d do such a thing. Why would anyone embark on a 3000-mile walk from the Atlantic to the Pacific? If you had a chance to ask Kent this question, odds are he’d turn the table on you. He’d ask what you’re fishing for. What answer might satisfy? Should he claim to be on a vision quest? On a search for life’s…