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I began my hiking journey in November 2020. Alone, afraid, and equally excited. As I write this, I have 25 trails under my belt, a community of friends, and endless memories.

I’m writing at the prospect of friendships that materialized and of memories that I’m thankful I took the time to capture. Starting something new can be intimidating. Starting it alone is even scarier. I look back at the pictures of my first hike in Gikuni, where I met Riziki, who said something to me that has sat with me throughout. She said, “pace yourself.”

Kefri forest, my second trail, reminds me of how I met my hiking partner, fondly known as my personal sweeper. This bamboo forest which I must mention is a sight to behold. As everyone was taking pictures of their friends and of themselves, I asked if he would take mine and he gladly accepted. With a genuine desire to heal from the world through the outdoors, we’ve found ourselves hiking together ever since.

Recently going through my Instagram I saw a picture, one that Mwangi, a fellow hiker, shot of me during the Ndiuni hike back in January. It was my first ‘challenge’ hike. I was famished before we even went down the escarpment. It reminds me of how far I have come. If you have been on the trails or know someone who has, you’ll come to realize how friendly drifters are. The camaraderie is insane. Mwangi walked with me to the very end and I am forever indebted to him.

Document your memories for a good measure! You’ll look back in months or even years and will certainly appreciate that picture or video you shot. 

Story by Noble Naserian

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