Sunday, November 24, 2013

(there is no simple answer to why I go)

"There is no simple answer to why I go on these trips. Not really. Some adventurers will tell you why they do it, but I think they don’t even know themselves. Some will say because it was there. Or the challenge. The excitement. The adventure. There is some magic to some of that stuff, but I don’t think it is any one thing. There is more to it.

Why must the goose fly north? Ask the arctic tern why he must go from the top to the bottom of the world every year. As for us humans, we must do the things that free us from self-imposed limitations. I am doing my own thing. My own way. My own time. I think that’s legitimate. I am doing what I must do to be true to myself and my nature.

I think it was Kipling who said: “Something is hidden. Go and find it. Go beyond the ranges.” There is something you are reaching for beyond the horizon, something maybe you can’t see. Maybe something beyond your ability, but still it’s worth reaching for. Some people might tell you that you are reaching too far. People may tell you that you can’t do that. You can’t paddle up the Grand Canyon. But if you have some reason, something in you, it’s still worth the effort. It is less important whether you succeed or not, it’s that you are true to yourself and your dreams."

 - Verlen Kruger, canoe adventurer extraordinaire. Verlen paddled over 90,000 miles in the last 40 years of his life, including one trip that started and ended in his backyard in Lansing, Michigan, and included the Arctic Ocean (Alaska), the entire Pacific Coast to Baja, Mexico, the Grand Canyon (upstream) and a thirty mile portage over the Continental Divide. (Heron Dance interview).

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