As I heard the rustle of my tent buddies and the familiar sound of the tent zipper being pulled, I knew it was time to get up. It’s super windy outside. It sounds as though we’re on top of a mountain as the wind reverberates against the tent, but we’re actually just a hundred metres or so from the Alesjaure mountain hut. It’s raining a little too and seeing as it’s so warm and cosy inside my sleeping bag, I’m loathe to get up.
We’re planning on trekking all the way to Abisko today, some 35km away. So we’re mentally preparing ourselves for the final push, stiffly getting up and trying to ignore our tired muscles that are yearning for a rest.
I know that once we’re outside all negativity will drift away. Aches and pains will disappear and will be replaced by a sudden urge to get going again. We’ve all come to love the constant motion. Having nature on all sides. The sun, wind, rain touching our skin. How on earth are we going to settle back down into life in an office in Stockholm?
For anyone that hasn’t spent a night in a tent in the wilderness; who thinks hiking for three, four, five days straight is a waste of time; who thinks the aches and pains, the blisters and the sores outweigh all the enjoyment of consecutive days of walking with a fully-loaded pack – this is for you. I dare you to try it. Just once. And see if it doesn’t change your perspective and fill your soul with a new sense of respect – for nature and your own abilities.
Today is probably our last trekking day. And while, we’re looking forward to finishing, having a shower, sleeping in a proper bed, not having to venture out in the cold to go to the toilet in the middle of the night; we’re also sad at the prospect of not waking up in this beautiful environment everyday.
I challenge you to spend more time in nature. To grab those moments outdoors whenever you can, both big and small, short and long. It doesn’t need to be hard or complicated. You don’t need to be an ‘expert’. You just need a sense of adventure and an open mind.
Without nature, we’re nothing.