The last time I went hiking was when I was still in high school; my youth weeps at how many eons ago that was. It was one of the activities we were forced to do on a school camping trip. I wasn’t particularly excited about it then because we had to wake up ridiculously early, I was not a physically active teen, and it was unbelievably cold that day.
My teenage self must have gasped when I recently decided to do my first 11.5 Km hike at the Hennops Hiking Trail, which is situated just outside of Pretoria, South Africa. In the days leading up to what our minds had painted as a suicide attempt, my partner and I deliberated on the reality of what we were committing to; weighing all the possible cons…and more cons. The topic was a hike on its own. In the end, with all our insecurity, lack of fitness and a bit of prayer, we did it.
The hike was a fair challenge, nothing we couldn’t handle. I must admit that I had a bit of an unfair advantage because my partner’s humour distracted me from the distance we were covering. This was also a bit of a disadvantage because, as you can imagine, it’s not easy climbing a mountain when you are constantly laughing. With that said, good company is essential for a hike.
It was interesting how the various areas of the trail challenged different parts of my body. Ironically; I found the downhill walks to be harder than the uphill climbs. What is even more ironic is that I disliked walking on the flat ground because even though it was the easiest part of the trail, that was when my attention was brought to the throbbing sensation in my limbs.
It was a fun experience overall; I met new people and interacted with nature. Since we are in the middle of winter, the views were a bit dull, but still a pleasure to take in. I’m definitely doing it again, and with the warm season slowly but surely approaching, my eyes are in for more of a treat.
It’s safe to say that I have covered “leg day” for the rest of the week!
Below are a few snaps from my experience.
Select any image to open the full gallery that you can click through 🙂