Friday, May 23, 2014

Off Grid Living

I did this sketch back in 2007 for the art gallery in Tallulah Falls, Georgia. That neck of the woods used to be my stomping grounds. Yesterday I met a hiker from that corner of the world and he took me to dinner at the White Wolf Restaurant. Many thanks to Ray from Cleveland, a very interesting guy and great outdoor enthusiast. We both got the Beast Burger, and a beast it was. Huge and delicious, with all the fixings with a monstrous pile of sweet potato fries on the side..

Some of our conversation centered around the changing ethics of hiking and the disappointing comportment of some of our peers. It boils down to the fact that its very important to remember the things we do leave an impact long after we've left. Perhaps that impact is not visible such as footprints or graffiti, but it can be devastating or satisfying in a cultural sense. Hikers passing through small trail towns leave an imprint on that town. Every eatery and hotel, hostel and post office can suffer or benefit. Its our choice. Hikers coming by later in the season feel the impact. We are ambassadors for our passions.

I'll be off the grid while I live and work on the Appalachian Trail, striving to be a good ambassador for hikers, making friends with those also enjoying the trails. With pen and paper events will be recorded and later transferred to my hard drive. On my days off, I recharge my camera and type, call friends and family.

Hope to see you out there, enjoying our natural treasures, taking a little time off the grid.

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