Last weekend I had the pleasure of walking along Nimblewill Nomad as he completed the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Along with was great company. From right to left, Dave Calibe Thru-Hiker 2010, Paul Birrittella Thru-Hiker 2012, Grey Ghost Thru-Hiker 2009, Niblewill Nomad Thru-Hiker 2012, and my cousin's husband Nate who I owe recognition for making this day happen as he initiated the communication with Nimble. Additionally Nate hiked with me on the trail on two different occasions totaling 4 days of walking. A true group of Ice Age veterans.
Above is the western most point of the trail, taken shortly after completion.
A short stop at an overlook in St. Croix Falls. The final bench of the trail for Nimble.
Nate and I stashed beverages and snacks half way through the day. Nimble so gracious for his favorite trail drink, Sierra Mist.
Another short break as we enjoy the St. Croix River. As Nimblewill checks off sections on his map I point out that he's handling map #1 of 105 maps he's hiked for the past 45 days. I smile, and he looks at me amazed and relieved and doesn't say anything. We share a moment of silence as we both understand what it's like to hold the final map after chasing it for so long.
Nimblewill reflects after completion at Interstate State Park, overlooking the St. Croix River. It is extremely emotional. This point marks finishing 10 of 11 National Scenic Trails. Sometime next month Nimblewill will go for #11, the New England National Scenic Trail. After a mere 200 miles, Nimblewill will become the first person in history to complete all 11 National Scenic Trails. A visit to his website, nimblewillnomad.com will give you a better perspective on the magnitude of hiking this man has done. As he approaches the end of this trail his speed increased. I try to fathom the journey to this point but cannot relate to the decades worth of work to achieve this goal. It was a big deal. Nimblewill is an inspiration to me and so many others. Thank you Nimblewill, for making an impact on so many lives.
Here is a picture Nimble took of me when we crossed paths during our thru-hikes. I was happy. We enjoyed a conversation together I will never forget.