Lighten up

My husband, Jon, and I recently hiked the West Coast Trail, a 75-kilometer [46.6 miles] trail that spans a section of the western edge of Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada. It’s a rigorous hike we’ve wanted to do for years, with trails through the forest, on the beach, through the mud, across boardwalks, and up and down dozens of wooden ladders.

We packed carefully for our one-week journey, but somehow our packs each weighed more than fifty pounds when we began. I didn’t think much of it, recalling other backpacking trips I’d been on with large groups, when I’d carried what felt like the same amount in extra clothes and water for other members of the group.

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