5 days ago, one of my best friends since Kindergarten embarked on a 2650 mile backpacking trip along the Pacific Crest Trail, from the border of Mexico to Canada. On top of that, within two months, he formed his own non-profit to serve as a platform for other people who want to fundraise for their own backpacking trips/outdoor activities for a good cause. I can explain more, but he has already so-eloquently written about what he’s doing already. I am so incredibly inspired, amazed, and proud.
To follow up on him: http://timiswalkingfortheirwater.wordpress.com/
To see where he is via GPS tracker: http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0DdRc24WNP7NYMITCegA8RaRxqOraQNVM
“My name is Tim Ritter. I am the founder of Walking for Their Water, a Christian-based nonprofit organization dedicated to turning passion for adventure into compassion for the thirsty. To start, I am hiking the entire 2,650-mile Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada in an effort to raise $20,000 to build clean water wells in Haiti.
Beginning May 8, 2011, I will live and breathe the trail for approximately 5 months, hiking over 20 miles per day while living out of a backpack with 25 lbs of supplies. I look to seek God along every step of the way and to glorify Him through my journey. By using my passion for the outdoors to help save the lives of our poor brothers and sisters in Haiti, I aim to serve God’s mission. In turn, I hope that my effort inspires in others a similar call to service.
When I return, I will work to assist any who are willing to create unique and personal adventure campaigns for the sake of clean water. Your natural passion for hiking, biking, swimming, and so forth is a blessing from God. I want to help you turn that blessing back into praise. Visit http://www.walkingfortheirwater.org for more information and see how you can show your love and compassion for others while pursuing your own love for adventure.
He can do great things in you if you let him. God bless!”
This will be the one and only post for the next 5 months that comes directly from me. Here is what you will see from now on:
Although there is no room for a computer in my backpack, I will carry a small digital voice recorder throughout my entire trip. Using this device, I will record my day to day thoughts as I hike, fish, cook, set up camp, meet people, read, pray, and mentally wander. Through the blessing (or curse) of technology, you’ll be with me every step of the way.
Every week or two, I will mail a memory card containing the audio files to my amazing mom, Ada Ritter. She will then upload and transcribe my ramblings here. Therefore, the words you read will be mine, but they will be subjectively formatted into text. If you are wondering, my mom probably knows me better than I know myself. Therefore, she will likely be a better organizer of my thoughts than I would be, myself.
I am exceedingly grateful for my mother and her incredible support along this journey of mine. She has and continues to play a huge role in the success of Walking for Their Water and my success as a man. It is only fitting that I begin my hike on Mother’s Day. This blog is no exception to her generosity. Her job here, along with the many other responsibilities that she has shouldered such as keeping me fed along the trail, is significant and difficult. Therefore, if you enjoy this blog, she deserves all of the thanks and praise.
Beginning Sunday, my journey will be many things. At times it will be heavenly, peaceful, and surreal. At other times, it will be difficult, painful, lonely, and impossible. Yet, I head into it with great confidence, for I will not walk alone. I put all faith in Jesus to guide me and I will seek Him fully. If I succeed in finding my way to Canada and the end of the trail, I will be happy. But if I succeed in finding my way to the beautiful Lord of creation, I will rejoice forever in his almighty presence.
I have several goals throughout this adventure. First, I seek to grow in God through daily prayer and bible study. Second, I want to enjoy and relish in the wondrous world that he has created. The PCT contains some of the most majestic natural landscapes on the planet. Third, I want to inspire compassionate giving to our fund to build wells in Haiti. Specifically, I expect to raise $20,000. Fourth, I want to share this experience with others in order to inspire similar adventure campaigns and to create a cycle of impassioned service to His people. Finally, I want to succeed in hiking all 2,650 miles of the trail (which will take almost 2,800 miles of total hiking, by the way).
Whether you find my adventure to be sensible or senseless, I invite you to join me in my journey. I will learn new things, reach new spiritual depths, experience new feelings, see new sights, and live in an entirely new way. I believe that this extended submission to a basic and primitive lifestyle (minus the GPS and iPhone) will greatly nurture and shape my soul. We were meant to live naturally, simply, and in unity with God. This is my chance to go back to that and to give you a taste of the experience.
Thank you dearly for those who have supported this adventure and those who continue to support our mission. 1 billion people lack clean drinking water worldwide and they need our help. Please consider donating to our effort to build wells in Haiti at http://www.walkingfortheirwater.org. Every dollar helps.
All glory, honor, and praise belongs to God for I am small and temporal, but He is mighty and infinite and through me he can do great things. Amen!
I would like to dedicate this journey do my dear friend Matthew French who died all too soon. I know he would have loved to see this journey unfold. I love you, Matty.
With sincere blessings,