February 1, 2024

Live The Life You Love

- By Jenny Bateman

Continue reading Live The Life You Love

We all have dreams and we all have fears. Sometimes the fears speak so loudly, they drown out our dreams. And that is why finding a tribe to which we can subscribe helps to quiet the fears and encourage our dreams.

It’s a bit daunting though, isn’t it? Signing up for an adventure that is as far south as you can imagine, to hike unfamiliar mountains with 11 other women whom are also unfamiliar to you. On that same note though, isn’t that the appeal? Diving into the unknown.

After our first briefing there were fewer butterflies in our bellies, allowing for a wonderful first nights sleep to be had in the comforts of the EcoCamp. So, with that we enjoyed a satiating breakfast, packed our lunches, laced our hikers, grabbed our day packs and gripped our poles ready to embark on the W Trek. Our first day was a long but gentle ease into the 4 day route. This gave us time to sort out our layers, organize our system and find our groove.

While admiring the grandeur of the Torres del Paine or finding peace along the Ascension River everyone found their place amongst the trail. We ate snacks while watching avalanches fall from glaciers, sang songs as we punched through the ferocious winds that would inevitably pick up each afternoon, all while being captivated by the remote and rugged landscape surrounding us. Be sure to remember your battery pack, as there is a picture perfect moment around every bend you traverse.

It was confided amongst our group that there were worries and wonders before embarking on this once in a life time hiking excursion. Some women wondered if they’d trained enough, some wondered if they could keep up, and some didn’t worry at all. While paces varied, one thing was certain we all shared the same desire to explore all that Patagonia wanted to show us.

Our crew of women were from the East coast to the West coast in both Canada and the US of A. Ranging from a youthful 37 to a wise age of 70 and everything that falls in between.

We had the same questions you are asking yourself now? And these were a few of the answers we discovered:
* training is necessary, whether your regular hikes gain elevation or not
* many layers and good gear are of the utmost importance, Patagonia can throw it all at you and she doesn’t fool around
* if your old hikers are tried, trusted and true bring them. New hikers won’t be up for the task
* if you’re worried about eating enough, don’t. I do believe my hiking pants got a little tighter and I have zero regrets for enjoying all of the delectable food offered.
* the guides are genuinely kind and caring. There is nothing Fio wouldn’t do to ensure your happiness and Mariana makes its her mission to keep you safe while enjoying the trip.
* the uncertainty of traveling with 12 strangers slowly dissipates as friends are found along the trail
* there are never any regrets for daring to be adventurous

Near the end of our travels we boarded a catamaran that provided us an up close and personal view of the Glacier Gray, what a sight to behold.

While the glacier was ever impressive, it was the striations carved into the bedrock beneath due to years of basal slip that captivated me. Much like the effects glacial movement has on the landscape below, life’s endeavours also have a way of etching lines upon our face as we get on in age. To me, this is beautiful! For in these lines are stories to be told, struggles we have survived, love & laughter shared with proof that we have lived a life worthy of remembering.

Each of us are etched by unique situations to one another, which creates the one and only version of you in this life. So, as I like to say You be You, I’ll be Me but together we can be Wild Women.

Ready to experience this trip for yourself? View our Patagonia Hiking Adventure [HERE].

All photos curtesy of Jenny Rae Bateman Photography

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