The Soundtrack

One of my favorite things about music is how it can amplify a moment or experience. Music is emotional glue, keeping me connected to the emotions and feelings that I experienced during a significant event in my life. The Hadrian’s Wall trip seems like one of those “lifetime event” things, so I made a playlist to accompany it. Many of these songs have a sense of adventure, of movement, or just feel as big as this trip feels to me. Others are just home country hat tips to some of my favorite bands. A couple speak to the sense of homesickness I’m sure I’ll feel being so far from friends and family, namely my wife.

Check it out and let me know what you think!



Last night my good friend Mike asked me a question about my trip that I hadn’t really given much thought prior to his asking:

What are you hoping to leave behind and what are you hoping to get from this trip?

Being a goal driven person, I’ve had similar thoughts in the months leading up to the trip, but tried to quiet them, not wanting to take many expectations with me. My goal was pretty simple: don’t have any goals.

Now that I’ve given it some thought, however, I think it’s okay for me to have some goals and to leave for the trip with a sense of expectancy. So, Mike, here are some answers to your question…

What am I hoping to leave behind?

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Packing List

Here’s my packing list for the trip. I’m probably overpacking, but since I have room in my suitcase (and since we’ve hired a service to carry our luggage from town to town), I thought I’d err on the side of abundance.


  • Hiking boots
  • Hiking socks – 8 pair
  • Wicking underwear – 8 pair
  • Wicking shirts – 8
  • Running shorts – 2 pair
  • Running socks – 2 pair
  • Running tanks – 2 pair
  • Hiking pants – 3 pair (convertible into shorts)
  • Hiking shorts – 2 pair
  • Sunglasses
  • Dinner shirts – 2
  • Dinner pants – 2
  • Non-wicking underwear – 5 pair
  • Pajama pants
  • Chacos
  • Running shoes
  • Comfy travel clothes
  • Wide brim hat


  • Rain shell
  • Trekking poles
  • Pack towel
  • Goal Zero solar charging panel
  • Petzl headlamp
  • Garmin Forerunner 210
  • Amphipod running water bottle
  • OR Gaiters
  • Nalgene water bottles – 2
  • Topo Designs Klettersack
  • Sea to Summit pack cover
  • Hiker first aid kit
  • K-Bar hobo knife


  • iPad and charging cables
  • Bluetooth keyboard
  • USB power convertor
  • Action Wipes
  • Body Glide
  • Toiletry Kit
  • Noise canceling headphones (for flight)
  • Miscellaneous magazines
  • TPM massage ball
  • The Stick massage stick
  • Neck pillow (for flight)
  • Best Made Co. horn tumblers
  • Flask
  • Pipe & cigars

There may be a few odds & ends tossed in last minute, but I think this is pretty much everything I’m taking. I’m on the fence about taking rain pants, thinking that I’ll do just as well with lightweight hiking pants and gaiters as I would with a pair of rain pants.

Open for Adventure

Well hello there. It’s been a while. Glad to see you’re all doing well. 

I head out for a hike across Northern England in a few days (3 days, 18 hours and 55 minutes to be exact, but who’s counting?), and I thought I’d knock the dust off the ol’ blog and use it to share some of my pictures and thoughts of the trip. 

Me & my pal AJ will be walking Hadrian’s Wall, a wall started by Roman Emperor Hadrian in 120AD that marked the northern border of the Roman Empire, and also served as the border between England and Scotland for a time. We’ll start by flying from Nashville to Newcastle, then taking a train or bus across the country to Bowness-on-Solway, the small town where our walk begins. Over the course of eight days, we’ll hike back across the country toward Newcastle, staying in pubs and inns along the way.

Needless to say, I’m excited for my first trip to Europe and for eight days of adventures in God’s playground!