Today was bittersweet. I put my notice in at work and it made me sad because I work for such a good company. My manager was so supportive and even congratulated Jake and I for following our dreams. It has taken me a long time to find a job I really enjoy and a company that shares the same values I do. I hope to work for them again in the future once Jake and I are through with our travels. I am happy to know that I will be missed and that I was a valuable part of the team. It feels good to know that I made a difference. Now, I hope to go and make a positive impact in the areas we will be traveling to.
I was hungry and cold a lot. I sure was glad when the humans brought me to the ranch in Chadron. It was a scary journey because I didn’t know what was going on but when I ended up on a ranch, I was pretty happy. I mean who wouldn’t like running free and eating regularly and getting to play with other dogs? I didn’t have to scrounge for every meal. It was so nice!
Debt is like the heavy weight being carried around with us everywhere we go. Every purchase, activity, vacation, or meal, thinking in the back of our minds: “Can we afford this? Should we really be spending our money on this?” It sucks and after 24 months of diligently working on paying off our debt, using the Dave Ramsey Baby Steps, we are DEBT FREE (excluding our home)! We didn’t want to be like the average American who has about $67k worth of debt, even into their 70’s. So we worked hard to pay off $132,408.98 of school loans, car loans, and credit card debt! In that time period we sold a condo and a vehicle. The proceeds of about $38k from these sales helped to pay down our debt. Besides that we have worked 2-3 jobs each and put that extra income towards our debt as well.
What better way to bring in the new year than with some skiing? We went to Red Lodge, MT to enjoy some cross country and downhill skiing with a few friends. There were sub-zero temperatures, cribbage, beer, hot-tubing and lots of snow!
worked so hard to become debt free (this was prior to getting married). I owned her free and clear. She had all of the accouterments I wanted and then some!
Now that we are past the initial budgeting stage, we are trying to see how to logistically do the thru hike of the Appalachian Trail. Our idea, after many interactions on different social media forums, is to drive Jake’s SUV to Georgia and leave it in the long term parking lot at Amicalola Falls State Park. The annual pass is only $50 and with it, we can leave our vehicle there for the duration of our thru hike. We know the potential issues with and possible solutions are:
For the last 9 years I have planned a ski trip with friends where we do some big mountain skiing. Living in the Midwest this yearly retreat is a must for me because I absolutely adore skiing! The feel of the wind on my face as I maneuver down the mountain, the quiet all around me when I have a run all to myself, the smell of pine, and the burn of my legs when I go down a double black diamond and realize I have gone too far to turn back and now I have to muster through this field of moguls! But most of all I love the freedom and strength I feel when I ski.
Well it’s official, starting in the early spring of 2019, Jake and I along with our 1 year old rescue dog, Sammy, will begin our 6 month journey on a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. We will go northbound (NOBO) from Amicalola Falls State Park in Georgia and work our way through 14 states and end in Baxter State Park in Maine! The trail is 2,190 miles and we estimate it will take us 139 days to complete excluding setbacks due to injury, sickness or weather.
In order to live the life we truly want, we need wheels to travel and explore our Unnamed Adventures. With so many options of vehicles to choose from, it’s easy for us to say “we are NOT experts” when choosing the best options. With that said, we started doing a lot of research, talked with pros in their respective fields (sales people, auto brokers, mechanics and insurance folks), and fellow adventure travelers in social media forums to get the insider scoop before purchasing. From our research, we have learned tons and want to share our process with you.
For the love of travel and new adventures, we live our lives for the next dream fulfilled!