Probably a little late to give a “send-off” to this year’s class, but I wanted to write something that I wish someone had told me in the beginning. I can say that my second half of the hike was a lot more fun than the first half.
Not going into town as often and not finding people that I really connected with. Do your best to find that early. Having this discussion with a fellow thru-hiker Lightning, we came to the conclusion that the thing we missed the most was the people. The kind of motivated, stubborn, people with a mission are hard to come by in the workplace.
Getting a group of people together with a single mission, that won’t let the others fail, is not found in a lot of places. Remember as you press on, that all your experiences out there are better shared. Each summit, every weird trail town, all the beers, are improved by having fellow hikers around. Shared suffering and the shared joys are what made this hike so special.