“Revisiting a familiar location? Why not a dozen? Do memories linger like unsprouted seeds in the ground, awaiting eagerly a source of sustenance? Or do they take root in our experiences and blossom into a story?”
Out Of The Mind And Onto The Page
Successfully summiting a lofty peak or completing a challenging hike is a rewarding experience in its own right. The stories that come out of these experiences, however, are a big part of what motivate us to continue adventuring, time and time again. Adventure Journaling is an excellent way in which we can record, collect and share our personal stories with others, and if done consistently over the course of many years, it can become a significant part of your legacy!
Experience is what its all about. The exhilaration of exploring a new environment, the anticipation of revisiting a favorite campground, even the planning process of an adventure is an “experience” worth documenting. Choose a durable book that best suits your gear, for example: an ultra-light backpacker wouldn’t be carrying an XL sketchpad onto the trail. Use a medium that won’t run or fade in the event your journal gets wet (I use Sharpie markers, White-Out, and acrylic paint most of the time).
While at an airport, on a lunch break, or at home, use down time to start filling up a page or two, rather than fiddling around with a smartphone. Even if you make a mess, ITS OK. Edit to your heart’s content later on; the point is, much like on the trail, to keep going and have fun!
Its one thing to flip through old photos from past adventures, but there is something very personal and remarkable about reminiscing over a journal entry. The main difference is the time that goes into recording a memory with your own hands and imagination. Every feeling and detail seems to spring back into the mind’s eye in a more life-like way. Each experience adds to the next.
Use elements of your environment, like rubbing dirt from the trail into the page, to add a special touch to the story. Instead of erasing mistakes, try to incorporate them. Also, if you feel comfortable, share your journal. You might be surprised what people will say!
© James Sisti and Exploring Elsewhere, 2015-2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to James Sisti and Exploring Elsewhere with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.