Solo in the Sierra’s

When I decided to go solo backpacking I wasn’t apprehensive, I’ve been on so many solo hiking & camping trips I knew I would be fine. I have the right gear, I knew where I was headed, I felt prepared. What I wasn’t expecting was to be tested in the solitude. Everywhere else I’ve gone I have been surrounded by other people, in campsites, on trails, in passing – on this adventure I didn’t anticipate the sheer and total quiet that crept up on me and made me go deeper with myself out of total necessity.

I’ve truly never felt such solitude. At times the silence was deafening, it seemed to press down on me. The sound of my breath, maybe the wind in the pines, maybe the crackle of my campfire in the evening…the occasional crunch of something moving about in the woods. Not another soul in sight for miles. Just a girl and her backpack at 8000 feet.

Part of that silence was magic. I could think clearly, I could take my time, I could hear the whispers of my soul. As conflicted as I had been about everything else in my life and where the universe has been pulling me, I kept arriving at the same conclusion. This was absolutely necessary. For some time now I had been approaching this cliff and I knew I was meant to leap. And at the same time part of the silence was terrifying. Taking the leap seemed paralyzing. It consumed me and told me stories of loneliness, questioning my motives and making me wonder if I had what it takes.

I found in the woods, out among the stars and alpine lakes and quiet wrestlings of my soul that I have all the bravery and strength that is required and more. When I was afraid, of both things real and imagined, I recognized the invitation to expand. When I felt peace, I felt it deep down in my heart & soul.

Amid the freezing cold water, the warm granite rocks, the blistered feet and dirty socks, the breathtaking views, shooting stars and natural hot springs, amid trails and massive sequoias I found that thing I had been chasing and seeking and wanting so badly was already in my heart. She was waiting in my soul for me to come home. For me to remember. For me to be brave. For me to get quiet. For me to wander. I realize the discomfort and the aloneness and the quiet was all apart of her gift. Touching the magic of what it means to be truly alive.

20 thoughts on “Solo in the Sierra’s”

  1. Wow Sarah! I don’t know anyone who writes more beautifully than you do! I can picture it, smell it, and feel it. Coming home to ourselves is so frightening; will we be enough? I’m so happy you saw God’s glorious image reflected back in your precious soul!

  2. Thanks for sharing with us. We get so many moments of ‘busy’ that life becomes a thing you have to DO. You brought me back to the knowledge that life is something you GET to be with. God gives me these moments at the beach…. glad you get to be near.

    1. Ginger – thank you so much for reading and for your kind comment! I am so glad you found inspiration – life indeed is so precious and rare and such a gift, may we be present in every moment.

  3. What an amazing trip, post and video! I hope that Scott has the desire to do things like this one day. I wish I had done more of it when I could. Congratulations on all of it Sarah, you so deserve it!

    1. Thank you so much Glen, you never know the adventures & magic the universe has planned for each of us – every journey is different! I really appreciate you reading – blessings!

  4. Wow Sarah, What a tremendous journey into the wilderness of yourself and the earth!! I applaud you! Thank you for sharing this. You are so inspiring! I love how you stuck through the hard parts to gain the insights and the beauty.

  5. As much as you enjoyed and benefitted form the aloneness, I wish O could have been with you:)! Sounds like a wonderful awakening.

  6. Just got to read this Sarah. You not only did it, but you wrote about it and captured it on video, so beautifully that we could feel the challenge, the adventure ,the beauty and the growth. TY Sarah! You are a blessing! 😘

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