The Great Hike (by Dana Meise)

The Great Hike 
by Dana Meise

I don’t think step counters go to 26,400,000 but if you walk 16,500km that’s what it would work out to. Indeed it’s a long walk but it was all part of my childhood dream to explore Canada. I chose the Trans Canada Trail because it suited my “explore needs”. By design it connects community, ­history, beauty and geography. As of December 17th, 2013 I completed the across Canada section of the trail at Clover Point Victoria B.C. thus becoming the first to do it, setting a record as the longest hike on the longest trail.

When one does such a thing as I have done It stands to reason that I would get asked many questions, here are a few that I will share with you; Do you get lonely? Yes! How many pairs of boots have you gone through? 17. Why have you taken on this incredible challenge? Because I can! Don’t you get bored? Well now, I can answer that question by answering another one I get asked all the time. What keeps you going? I was the kid that couldn’t wait to see around the next corner always exploring. My curiosity was “most curious” indeed, and as it turned out served me well on “The Great Hike” I had embarked on. By always being excited as to what’s ahead and taking genuine interest in my surroundings and the people I meet, I’m never bored, that is what keeps me going. So as you may imagine I had much anticipation to hike the Kettle Valley Rail Trail which is considered by many to be one of the most significant sections of the Trans Canada Trail.

I knew there were a series of trestles and tunnels that I was highly anticipating. One tunnel called the “Bull Dog” is 912m, the longest on the KVR. After getting through I pitched camp on the other side. Rising at dawn I decided for good measure I’d walk through again, after all I had walked tens of millions of steps to get here what’s a few more. I was highly impressed, however I found the whole KVR one “WOW” after another making everyday exciting, and I walked it! Cycling the trail would be awesome, In fact I’ve talked a few families into going this summer as they were asking me what to recommend. I wish I could share all the highlights but there are too many and besides I wouldn’t want to spoil it for you!

When I hike I don’t think about what works best for me rather, I rate a trail system by how user friendly it would be for a variety of users. If you’re out for a day, a few days or want to do the whole thing it is perfectly geared with plenty of access points for drop off and pickup. If just for a day, anywhere you are you will find a “WOW” factor just waiting for you to discover it! I really wish you could hear the excitement and enthusiasm in my voice as I write this because I would seriously get you PUMPED-UP to experience what this trail offers. I’ve got some experience with trails and I can’t wait to come back and cycle it and this time I’m bringing friends!

If you would like to see more pictures and stories about my experiences on the KVR or my journey as a whole please check out my Facebook Page “The Great Hike” or Twitter @TheHikingFool I’d be happy if you shared your experiences with me as well. Follow my new adventure beginning early April 2014 as I solo hike to the Arctic another 3800km’s.