If you can surround yourself with anyone, surround yourself with hikers. They are the most down to earth, adventurous badasses you'll ever meet. They are the definition of pure, good vibes.
Ever since I started my adventures in New Zealand, I have come to absolutely adore my weekend trips hiking, mainly because of the people.
They're all different, but they all have similar characteristics that make them simply irresistible. If you don't hike, you should strongly reconsider. Here’s why:
They're optimistic, yet prepared for anything
Every hiker needs to have a plan before he or she starts: how many hours to hike a day, which campsites to stay at, how much food is necessary and so on.
But, even on the warmest of weekends, every hiker will have thermals and a rain jacket, just in case.
They know their plans are not set in stone, so changing their route last minute does not cause any worries or drama; every detour is an adventure to them.
Their love for the mountains keeps them going; it doesn't really matter whether they stick to the path or not.
A little rain simply means better waterfalls and maybe even a rainbow or two. What's not great about that?
They can be whomever they want to be during the week, but during those weekends, they are low-maintenance, selfless, nature-loving explorers.
They can survive without brushing their teeth or having toilet paper without a single complaint.
Their only requirement for dinner is that it's a warm meal — and even that's a luxury.
They carry everything they need on their backs and they require very little. Most of their motivation comes from the view from the top and the climb up.
They get high off their surroundings and simply marvel at the world around them while others are too busy to even realize the significance of such beauty.
They're incredibly encouraging
Meeting people at campsites and in huts is an experience everyone should have.
There's a feeling of haziness from the exhausting day, but also a sense of accomplishment for coming so far.
You'll have at least one person offer you some hot chocolate before you leave, along with a story or two about a memorable trip.
They are so willing to share their lives with you, all the while encouraging you to keep going and see the amazing landscape that awaits you.
I once met a family of two little boys and a younger girl hiking with their parents in one of the first huts I stayed in.
Although we only talked for about 10 minutes, I ended up running into them at the very end of my trip and they easily remembered me.
They said they were thinking of us when a bad storm hit the day before, hoping we made it over the crossing okay. It was such a genuinely caring thought, and I couldn't help but be in awe of such humanity.
They're carefree and bold
Hikers do crazy things. They feel adrenaline of climbing mountains and volcanoes, knowing if they stand too high, they might just get blown right off.
The climb is always worth the view for them, and hardly anything will get in their way.
They don't sit on their phones all day and they don't worry about the lives of everyone else. Their task is simple: Get to the top and to the other side.
They don't spoil their thoughts with the mindless, ever-changing drama most of us do. They pack light, both physically and mentally.
They simply live in the moment and shouldn't we all be striving for that?
Once the hike is completed, they're left with feelings of pure euphoria and accomplishment.
Although those feelings fade, they’re exactly what gets them onto the next track and the next adventure.
Surround yourself with those who do not fear the unknown, but yearn to see it.
Surround yourself with those who care more about fulfilling their souls than they do about keeping up with the latest trends and drama. Surround yourself with hikers.
Or, at the very least, become one.
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