Sorry it has been a few weeks since I last posted. I have been trying to get out and enjoy the mountains. I have been spending a great deal of time hiking around the Bear River Range up Logan canyon (partially to get out hiking, and partially to prepare for this year’s deer and elk hunts). As usual when getting away from the hustle and bustle of modern life, the mountains provide a nice quiet place to be alone with your thoughts. As such I would like to share a few realizations I have come to.
1. Stick To Your Goals
So a little personal background, hunting and fishing were part of my Cache Valley upbringing. When I entered my 20’s I decided I wanted to pick up fly fishing and bow hunting; however, during my college days I didn’t have the time nor funds to pick up these activities. So I promised myself that once I finished my education I would follow through.
Last year was fly fishing. Living in the Teton Valley and having three of the best fly fishing rivers in the world within an hour’s drive it is almost a given that you fly fish. So I geared up and got to work. And I can tell you this, my first month I probably spent 75% of my time untangling line and trying to tie on new flies. But with persistence and time by the end of the season I was a competent fisherman on the Teton River.
So this year was time to pick up stick and string. Thanks to the help of Lance at Top of Utah Archery, I was able to get set up with a good bow and once again went to work. With persistence and time I have been able to become a competent archer at up to mid-range. This culminated with harvesting my first elk a couple weeks back.
Moral of this story, when we set goals and put in the time and persistence then those goals can be accomplished.
2. Know Your Limitations
When you are spending time in the high country, especially alone, knowing your own personal limitations is one of the biggest factors in staying safe. Over the summer months I averaged going out hiking/scouting 2-3 times per week; most of these excursions either started in the dark before sunrise, or ended after the sun went down. And almost all of these times I was alone. I know that some of you might be saying “hiking around in the woods alone, in the dark, is not safe,” and I can assure you that my mother would agree with you (from the NUMEROUS conversations we’ve had on this topic) ha ha. However, I believe that with proper planning, and knowing your limitations, these wonderful mountains can be a place that can be enjoyed in solitude.
3. Plan Your Work, Work Your Plan
Part of what makes hunting, fishing, or whatever activity you like to do successful, is having a good plan. Whether you are preparing for an event, or trying to harvest an animal a good plan is crucial. Then, executing that plan and follow through with it.
Thinking back on my days coaching high school kids in lacrosse, our most successful seasons (and games for that matter) were the ones that we had a good plan, and worked that plan.
4. There’s More To Life Than Just Being Alive
This is probably the biggest realization from the summer. This was really driven home a couple weeks ago when I had a significant scare while being up in the high country alone…in fact it resulted in me going to the emergency department and at least for a few minutes wondering if I was on my last breaths…perhaps in a following post I’ll get into the details of the event. And even though I had this scary event, as I was recovering my thoughts kept coming back to “I would rather go out standing on my feet, than all laid up not living my life.”
You might be thinking, “what the heck does all of this have to do with a Physical Therapy blog?” First of all it’s some stuff that has been on my mind...BUT ALSO if you are faced with injury, these principles can be the difference between getting better (and staying better) quickly, and having your symptoms continue to keep you down.