I know some of you have "done" Philmont, done Northern Tier, done the AT for some distance. I few years ago, I was invited to walk the Camino de Santiago with a friend. He had some large changes in his life and wanted to get away, to have a different perspective for awhile. He called me his "lifeguard". I took that as a very big compliment. And so we mostly walked, carrying most of our material needs on our backs for several weeks.
What is it that makes these events, call them "expeditions". so memorable , so important to a person's life? Such treks are "lived simply", taking only what we can carry. Yes, we often depend on a lot of modern technology (whatever that technology is at the time. Compass? topo map? GPS?), but it is what we carry on our back. That's all we really need, isn't it?
On my Camino trek, I had my friend and many new friends met and walked with along the way. People helped us and we helped many when we needed the help. Clean Water and places to rest on our way.
How complicated do we really need to make our life? We are constantly bombarded with messages about what other people think we "need". Vitamins? Shingles? Types of tea or water purification systems? Detergents? shampoo? Potatoe chips?
What do we really NEED in our backpacks?