Transcript from Attached Video

This is my tribute to any of you, to all of you, who have ever dreamed of the outdoors.  To all of you who have ever had dreams.  And this is my one hope, is that today, in some manner, you'll take one step towards your dreams.  And the outdoors can be simply walking out your front door and going to the nearest park. 

Yeah.  I'm sitting on the Pacific Crest Trail at a place called Eagle Rock.  Yeah. This place is the place of dreams. But it's also, it's a three mile hour plus walk from a trailhead. I was here on Saturday, and there were hundreds of people.  Hundreds of people, families, carrying little kids on their back.

It was wonderful to be here. And families of all stripes and colors and shapes. It really was. I'm here now at sunrise, though. And it's 38 degrees, which I’m still wearing my down puffy. Because on Saturday, to record this, I would have been in a breeze. So I got up before 5 o'clock this morning and drove out here so I could do this. 

Yeah.  The Pacific Crest Trail was a dream. At one point, having a wilderness trail that runs from Mexico to Canada was no more than that. But a lot of people helped over the years, and a lot of people still help today. I'm going to read a segment from my book, Journeys North, about one person who felt she was very ordinary, and her dream was to hike the Pacific Crest Trail, and she's just finished.

Her trail name is OJ. She's actually an excellent journalist like Katie Wirth. But here, it's about OJ as she finishes the Pacific Crest Trail.  

Monday, September 24th, 2007:  As OJ descended the final miles through dense forest to the Northern Monument, she wasn't sure what to expect.

The closer she got, the more she started hurrying. Then she saw the line of missing trees. It's as though someone waxed the 30-foot-wide strip of the forest as far as the eye could see.  OJ veritably skipped down the last switchbacks, and then she heard familiar voices. Her mom and dad were there, having hiked in the last eight miles to meet her, just as they planned.

And there was the Pacific Crest Trail Monument. And there was Canada.  Her parents asked, what do you feel? OJ answered, relief, excitement, and disbelief. But what she actually felt was surprise.  She had started the hike with hundreds of other people, including super athlete types and Appalachian Trail veterans.

She thought so many of them had been better prepared than she was, with better gear, better physiques, better brains, better senses of humor. Now at the border, she thought, I'm an occasional jogger, an excessively poor organizer, and a perfectly ordinary person. Who would have imagined I would make it? How crazy is that? That I could walk from Mexico to Canada. It blows my mind.  

So, I hope you'll do something. Something today in pursuit of your dream, whatever it is. And I hope someday you'll have lunch at a trailhead. You'll take a day hike, maybe to a place like Eagle Rock. Or maybe you'll sleep overnight on the trail, the Pacific Crest Trail, and enjoy it.

Barney “Scout” Mann

All my best to you.

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