An Emotional Hike of the Heart
04-01-12 – Sheep Corral Canyon Hike
Approximately one year ago, Tom Buckley headed off for the adventure of a hiker’s dreams. He started hiking the Appalachian Trail in March 2011, challenging himself to complete the 2180 mile hike of legends in a thru (continuous) hike. Sadly, his challenge was never completed because on April 11, 2011 Tom never woke up from his tent, apparently the victim of a heart attack. On that day, another challenge started….. for his wife, Mary Ann.
Mary Ann and I are neighbors, but I didn’t really know her. When I heard about Tom’s passing, I brought over a meal, to show support and give a little comfort. Since that day, Mary Ann and I have been hiking together and getting to know each other. It’s strange to start a friendship because of a death. But this is how it started for us. During our hikes, we talked about everything including politics, recipes, work, money, religion, and naturally, loss of a spouse.
Here we are a year later; today we venture out and look for the perfect spot to release Tom’s ashes into the wilderness. This is just a reconnaissance mission; the release day will be shared with a group of Tom’s loved ones in mid-April. We explore several beautiful spots, analyzing the attributes like the two project managers we are. At the end of the ride, Mary Ann has a short list of stunning locations she likes and she’ll decide which one she’ll use in the coming days. We end our hunt with a hike on a trail up Sheep’s Corral Canyon Rd., walking through pine forests and hills with a light breeze and the deep blue sky of New Mexico.
I suggest that you never avoid the opportunity to reach out to someone in need; you’ll receive more than you give.
For more information about the Appalachian Trail Hikers, check out:
3.47 miles / 2.0 hours
51 down / 49 to go
Posted on April 2, 2012, in Challenge, Gila National Forest, Hiking, New Mexico, Outdoor Activities, Southwest and tagged challenge, Gila, hike, hiking, New Mexico, Pinos Altos, Silver City. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.