The Eight Stages of Tramping (Hiking for my American Friends)

Stage One: You begin with a slightly virtuous feeling knowing that you're going to do something good for your body and perhaps work off some of those excess calories from Christmas and New Year celebrations.

Stage Two: Excitement as you set off on your tramp. After all, how hard could it be?

Stage Three: The excitement has worn off but you're not yet into the finding-it-difficult part of the walk. The terrain isn't too hard, the weather is perfect, the scenery is gorgeous, and soon you'll stop for a break. Life is good.

Stage Four: The What-Was-I-Thinking stage. The novelty is over, the excitement has vanished, and now it just seems like hard work. You just want it to be over.


Stage Five: The I-Want-To-Die stage. Your legs are shaking, your throat is burning, your heart pumping so hard you know it can't take much more, and, frankly, you don't care whether you live or die, you just want it to stop. This is also the stage where you want to inflict serious bodily harm on the next person who says that the view will be worth it or that you're almost at the top (especially when 'almost' means three hours or thereabouts).

Stage Six: Survival stage. You don't care that your legs are covered in mud or that you've just put your hand in something you'd rather not think about or that every step causes pain, you just want to get out. You ARE not going to die and leave your body for the possums/rats/birds/beasts of the field to devour. Usually this stage occurs around the half-way mark and lasts a looooooong time.


Stage Seven: Relief. This occurs when you finally see your destination and stumble painfully out of the bush and collapse beside your vehicle, gasping "Water" through parched and dry lips.

Stage Eight: Recovery. Congratulations if you've made it this far. All that is left to do now is find your way home, have a nice long soak in a hot bath, allow your limbs a day or three to recover and vow never to do a tramp again ... until forgetfulness sets in and the madness begins all over again.


Mandy said…

It is the best! I miss every minute of it!!!
Jules said…
Come on over and we'll have a special tramp just for you!