Awaken Your Travel Bug

Back in high school—oh, so many years ago—a friend of mine gave me a travel article his father had written about a trip to Hong Kong. Looking back, I realized that one article was the seed of my love of adventure and world travel, and it reinforced my own upbringing in which my father always wondered what was over the next rise.

A few of my earlier journals

A few of my earlier journals. Photo credit: Brien Crothers

WHAT INSPIRES TRAVEL?

I happily remember, years later, being invited to climb Mount Kilimanjaro on my first adventure abroad. I had desired to go to Africa and climb the highest freestanding mountain in the world, but I made excuses for myself—such an adventure was well outside my comfort zone. My eventual, successful climb of Mount Kilimanjaro, and the safaris I took into the Maasai Mara National Reserve, the Serengeti National Park, and to the Ngorongoro Crater opened a door I’ll never close. This early experience was addictive and the result was that I became completely hooked on traveling the world.

Trekking the Machame Route, Mount Kilimanjaro—2016

Trekking the Machame Route, Mount Kilimanjaro—2016. Photo credit: Brien Crothers

Since these early introductions, and after paying my dues and working up the career ladder, I’ve traveled to twenty different countries on five continents and had some grand times, met some great people, and seen such beauty—made by humans and by nature —that my comfort zone is now about 24,900 miles around (the approximate circumference of the Earth).

INSPIRE A TRAVEL ADDICTION (A GOOD ADDICTION TO HAVE)

There is a saying here in Wine Country that “life is too short to drink bad wine.” Sure, that’s one variation of an old saying. Here’s another: “Life is too short to want but never do.” The only thing standing between where we currently are and where we want to go is effort, and sometimes a little discomfort. Sometimes it’s hard to define our goals and other times we have far too many. But once you determine a destination and getting there has become a priority, put in the time and just go.

Trekking the Inca Trail, Peru—2000

Trekking the Inca Trail, Peru—2000. Photo credit: Brien Crothers

COMFORT IS OVERRATED AND OTHER TRUTHS

In my last post, I talked about how preparation leads to success. I tend to be more adventurous than many people my age, and that is what this blog is all about. Whether it’s taking a river cruise in Myanmar, walking the Te Araroa trail of New Zealand, or hiking to an Everest base camp, adventure travel takes some degree (sometimes significant) of preparation.

Preparation for adventure travel requires repeated effort to wear a path in our muscle memory, to establish mental familiarity with our anticipated journey, and to line up our spirit to meet those goals we have set before ourselves.  Henry David Thoreau expressed this well: “As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.”

Adventure racing in Southeast Asia—2002

Adventure racing in Southeast Asia—2002. Photo credit: Brien Crothers

PREPARATION LEADS TO ENJOYMENT

This post is the first in a series about preparing for your adventure travels this summer and beyond. Future posts will cover proper physical and foot conditioning, creating training plans, packing lists for various adventures, getting to your destination and home again, budgeting advice, and much more!

Tingri, Tibet, Everest Advanced Base Camp Trek—2005

Tingri, Tibet, Everest Advanced Base Camp Trek—2005. Photo credit: Brien Crothers

Step out of your comfort zone. Why wouldn’t you? If you stay put because you don’t know what adventure travel might involve, you are in the right place! Stick with us as we wander the path of expanding your comfort zone. Knowledge is power.

 

 

3 comments on “Awaken Your Travel Bug

  1. Moon says:

    Bravo!

  2. […] week I introduced a new series on preparing for your world travel adventures. In that post, I invited you to step out of your comfort zone, broaden your horizons beyond your […]

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