John Muir was once quoted saying….
“Hiking – I don’t like either the word or the thing. People ought to saunter in the mountains – not hike! Do you know the origin of that word ‘saunter?’ It’s a beautiful word. Away back in the Middle Ages people used to go on pilgrimages to the Holy Land, and when people in the villages through which they passed asked where they were going, they would reply, “A la sainte terre,’ ‘To the Holy Land.’ And so they became known as sainte-terre-ers or saunterers. Now these mountains are our Holy Land, and we ought to saunter through them reverently, not ‘hike’ through them.”
As a lover of all things green, luscious, dewy, foggy, misty…trails and paths and pinecones. The volcanic cascade peaks. Tropical beaches. Pristine lakes and rivers. Waterfalls. I find nothing more aligned with my spiritual nature, all that is. I must commune with nature. And often. I walk reverently, with every step. Even if I am making a fast pace, or struggling up a mountain. A la sainte terre. I will never be finished with walking this earth.