I told you in an earlier post about my interest in Deerfield Spa and how I’d read about them in one of my fitness magazines. Well, another business that caught my eye was Adventures in Good Company, a travel company offering “trips for adventurous women who want an active vacation and love being outdoors.” I kept them in mind and here and there I’d check out their website, to see their offerings and read what others said about them. I liked what I saw and was pretty sure I wanted to try a trip with them, but I was comfortable with the always enjoyable Deerfield week. That was it. Comfortable? Time to mix it up! So 2009 was the year I decided to give it a go and try something new. An adventure!
So right after the new year I signed up for Slackpacking Georgia, a week-long October trip. Seemed like a good place to start. The trip offered hiking all day every day for a week through the fall foliage of Dahlonega, Georgia, carrying only a day pack. We’d start at Springer Mountain, the southern terminus of the Appalachian Trail, and work our way through sections each day, with a van shuttling a small group of us back and forth. After a tough day on the trail, we’d arrive back to a new hostel reserved just for us, with warm showers, the promise of delicious food and plenty of it, and comfy beds at night. This was right up my alley.
|The group starting out at Springer Mountain on the Appalachian Trail.|
Sounds like a dream vacation, right? As long as you know what you’re in for. No, the reality was it was hard work, damn hard work. But I wouldn’t ever trade that experience. The sense of accomplishment I felt at the end of the trip was worth all the blood (my tootsies) and sweat (mine and the bears) on the trail.
|On top of the world.|
I see now two years later that the trip I took was upgraded (or is that downgraded?) from a level 4 (difficult) rating to a 5 (most difficult), which is a good call in my estimation. That trip was hard work. One woman in our group gave herself the adventure for her 50th birthday and had to sit out here and there since she hadn’t really trained as suggested. Seriously, I began training and hiking to be ready from the time I signed up in January, right up until I left on the plane in October. And thank goodness! I’m not sure I would have made it without that rigorous regimen.
I notice that the adventure company now offers a new service, Fit for Trips, "a fitness program designed to help you prepare for your next adventure.” Obviously, someone smart saw a need and jumped to fill it. Not a bad idea to give yourself some structure to ensure you have fun and make your goal!
So what am I doing lately? Am I deterred by hard work? No! I've started training again. And I’m dreaming about my next adventure! Yes, I’m scouring the Adventures in Good Company website, but I’m also perusing Travel with REI and interested in trips I see on Backroads.com. I’ve heard firsthand from friends who’ve tried each of these other companies that the trips delivered and they had an awesome time like I did on my adventure. It’s always nice to get a referral from someone you know who had a good experience.