So, for my first post, I figured that I could lay out what I would like to do with Backcountry Mentor. I hope to use this site to share tips, experiences, and knowledge about hiking and backpacking in Northeast Ohio, and beyond. As I grow an audience, my future plans could hold anything from guided hikes, e-books, or even trip planning services. This is a big step for me. I get a lot of questions from friends and family about places to go hiking or camping, what kind of gear to take, and what to expect, so perhaps making it publicly available can help even more people learn how beneficial going into nature can be.
When my wife passed away in 2014, it took me awhile before I was able to step back into the wilderness in any way. Little did I know that it was exactly what I needed. Within minutes of being away from the pavement and into the trees, a calm came over me. I had been to these places before, frequently, but had taken it for granted how much it recharged my batteries in times of stress.
Since her death, I have spent more and more time in the woods. It has taken some time, but I’m ready to step into another role…that of a guide. My hope is that I can pull other people into nature with me, and help them heal, de-stress, or just appreciate the wild spaces the we humans have inhabited for hundreds of thousands of years. The civilization that we live in now is only but a blip on the timeline of human life, and even though we may believe we are surrounded by concrete and cars, there are always places nearby where we can experience nature, no matter how small.
The wilderness doesn’t have to be inaccessible or scary to anyone. Nature isn’t out to get you. With preparation and basic common sense, anyone can find a place in the “back-of-beyond” to call their own, and I hope to be able to facilitate that for you based on my years of experience.
For now, I’m going to focus on writing and publishing something once a week or so. This could be simply a report of a recent hike I’ve taken, reviews of various gear that I use, or interesting articles that can further everyone’s enjoyment of the backcountry. I’ve went ahead and posted some of my old writing for your perusal, but I can’t wait to start generating more…as it means that I’m getting outside!
If you have any questions about anything hiking or backcountry related, please feel free to contact me!