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As the year comes to an end, I’ve been reflecting on all the wonderful things that have come from hiking.  The biggest is overcoming my fear of heights.  I cannot imagine doing this 5 years ago.

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I never think of hiking as exercise, but you cannot deny the health benefits of challenging yourself on steep climbs, long distances, and being outdoors in all kinds of weather.

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The biggest surprise for me, was finding so many women who love to hike, who just needed an organizer.

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I’ve made many wonderful friends through hiking and through blogging about it.

My year started out rather slowly; first the vertigo, then back issues, hip issues, knee issues, my goodness, I thought I would never get back on the trail.  But thanks to PT, water aerobics, and a shot in the hip – I was able to complete 180.3 miles of hiking this year.

My goal will be set higher for 2018 – all I want for the New Year is my body to stay stable.

Happy New Year!  May 2018 bring you joy and happiness, and good health!

One last hike for 2017

Today was my last women’s hike of 2017, Mother Nature was on our side.  She must have woken up in a good mood and thought “let me warm up the day for the Wandering Diva Striders.”  Sunshine, warm temps, great friends, made for a very fun December day.

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Cindy, Peggy, Hannah, Jan, Joanne

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So much enthusiasm for a “winter” hike, that we had to take two cars!  And, two pictures.

No vistas today, just a little jaunt on the Appalachian Trail, from the lower parking lot to the entrance to Angel’s Rest.

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Then a visit to the Pearis cemetery, which I wrote about in a previous post – Falling into the Woods.  In this cemetery, you will find Revolutionary soldiers buried along with Civil War veterans.

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This was a fun place to hang out and eat lunch.

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From there we walked across the US 460 bridge, so I could show them where the AT crosses.

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Everyone sees the signs on 460, but unless you see a hiker, you have no idea how the trail crosses the road.  That’s because you have to go under the highway.

By the way, we tried waving to all the cars going by and only got one person to wave back.

 

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What goes down must come back up – lots of steps.

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As I introduced everyone this morning, I realized that exercise is what brought us all together.  I used to play tennis with Jan, I met Peggy and Joanne from high energy aerobics, and Hannah from water aerobics.  Cindy has been in my life a while.  I never think of hiking as exercise, but thank goodness for exercise classes and the chance to meet such fabulous women!

Can’t wait to see where we will go in 2018!

Wishing all my blogger friends a very happy, safe, and healthy holiday!

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