Ever have one of those moments where you just stop moving and the puzzle of the world around you just comes together? Like when you hike all day and are tired when you reach the top of a big hill, but you look around and what do you see? A perfect 360 degree panorama that simply takes your breath away… so you sit and stay for a few lingering minutes just feeling like you want to humm…
(open this image in a new window to see it’s full effect)
Beautiful trees in the UP, fall (Porcupine Mountains). Serious humm time.
Humm time at Lake of the Clouds
Hiking through the woods is one of my favorite things to do. In the UP, there are so many amazing places to explore, whether its winter or summer. Two years ago, Baberaham and I went on what I call an epic hike (and I really don’t like to overuse that word like a lot of people do). The month before our hike brought nearly 10inches of rain, yet we thought it would be a good idea to head out on a 30mile backpacking trip in the Porkies. Things started out alright, but then the mud got thicker and thicker, and before we knew it, our trail turned into a stream, and then turned into a river. Regardless, at the end of the day, I didn’t feel the weight of the world on my shoulders (just the weight of my backpack… oofta!), the stress of my first semester of grad school had disappeared into thin air (high altitude?), and I just felt calm. Sure, my feet were wet, but that wasn’t a concern for me. We made it to the end of the hike over Lake of the Clouds, and we just basked in some serious feel-good, humm time.
on Isle Royale, humming
It took me 24 years to get to Isle Royale. I lived just a three-hour boat-ride away for four years, but I never made it there. I traveled around the world, and never got there. So when I returned to Michigan after finishing my master’s degree in Montana, I made a special trip with a new-found friend and old college acquaintance. It was a splendid week of backpacking, running, and exploring. I spent a lot of time thinking, listening, being quiet. I would sit for hours listening to the waves pitter-patter on the rocky shoreline. I met new people, ate fresh thimbleberries along the trail and ate freshly caught fish from the lake. I ran on our off-days and got lost and found the right trail again. I’d sit by the campfire and stare into the fire, just watching the flame flicker and climb and fall and spark and pop. There’s something so meditating about a campfire… I spent a lot of time Humming.
Campfires on Isle Royale are a sureshot for hummfests
Humming on the beaches of Lake Superior
Long run humm time to Todd Harbor on Isle Royale
There are so many times and places where I can find my center. Sometimes it’s when I am feeling light as a feather coming back into Houghton from a run on the Maasto Hiihto trails. The wind is to my back and my legs are just floating me home. Humm…