September 2nd, 2015
And I’m a total sissy! So…why in the heck did I try to hike it?!
Well that’s a long story… I’ll give you the nutshell version. My husband’s friend flaked a week before go time and I was the backup plan. I’m always up for adventure, so this seemed like fun. In theory. Plus, we would get to the top, take pictures (wearing our favorite Swell tees of course) and I would check it off of my list of things to do before I die. I had it all worked out.
Shopping for the trip was great. I already had my Swell thermals and tees, so I headed to REI. They have SO much stuff – night vision headlamps, SmartWool socks with fun designs, every kind of freeze dried food you can imagine… Wal-Mart and Sports Chalet were also on the list. I added on hiking poles, polyester pants (not flattering at ALL) and a back up windbreaker and I was ready.
Whenever I’m at the beach, I try to pick up a few pieces of trash on my way out of the water. It harms wildlife, pollutes the water, and looks nasty.
But what about the trash we don’t see? I recently had a chance to hear Ximena Waissbluth from Surfrider Foundation’s Rise Above Plastics campaign and learn a bit about the North Pacific Gyre. A gyre is sort of a vortex produced by circulating ocean currents. The problem is that more plastic trash than ever is being dumped in our oceans and these currents have created a giant garbage patch (twice the size of Texas!) in the middle of the Pacific. This story has been around for a while, but considering the speed that the patch is growing, I wanted to bring it up again.
What can we do? The main thing is: reduce your consumption of single use plastics. That means using stainless steel water bottles, reusable grocery bags, etc. The more disposable plastic you reduce from your life, the less there is to end up polluting our beaches and seas. But be forewarned: you’ll be surprised how much single-use plastics are in your daily routine once you consciously make a decision to get rid of them.