2 thoughts on “Hiker Register, March 27

  1. Dear Mary,

    I passed through and signed the register on 3/25, and picked up the two Walt Witman excerpts — read the shorter one in my tent. As a 56 year old physics professor I just wanted to thank you for bringing thoughtful reading material to the (mostly) young PCT hikers that pass by. The trail provides quite an education but sometimes it isn’t as wholesome as it could be. Maybe we could think of a “university of the trail” with a wide-ranging curriculum of sorts. Astronomy, geology, meteorology, and ecology are well represented (but only if one pays attention) so it is essential to have the humanities as well!

    Greetings from Idyllwild. — Meditation Man


    1. Hi Meditation Man,
      Thank you for your comment. As a former philosophy professor, I like the idea that life-changing ideas “happen” wherever people are open to them. In a way, PCT hikers of all age groups are among the most open people I have met … much more so than the 18-year-old undergraduates who used to populate my intro courses, prior to my retirement.

      I like the idea of a “university of the trail” and actually proposed a course several years ago that looked at a particular place from the point of view of a variety of academic disciplines, both scientific and in the humanities. The course was shot down by my university’s Legal Counsel as being too “risky,” as it required students to camp in a remote part of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park for five days, but I think the idea is a good one.


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