“Wow, that is awesome that you guys are just traveling!  Do you have a website or anything like that so I can follow along?”

Yeah, sure.  It is Go Curry Cracker dot com

“Uhh…  what?” they say with a puzzled expression

Strangers have offered all sorts of unsolicited guesses as to the meaning of such a moniker, ranging from the offensive to the completely inane.  One person was insistent that it was a racial slur, even feigning offense.  People are funny that way

To uncover the origin and meaning of this most awesome of names, we need to go way back to our honeymoon.  A lot of people spend insane amounts of money on their honeymoons.  We spent somewhere around $0, and I’m willing to bet another $0 that ours was way more full of wonder.  But why wouldn’t it be, when we spent ours on The Wonderland Trail.  Hiking and camping in national parks is free, who knew?

The Wonderland Trail is a hiking trail that encircles Mt. Rainier, a 14,411 ft. glacier covered volcano outside of Seattle.  The total trail is about 93 miles long and has over 22,000 ft. of elevation gain (and loss) as it passes from valley to peak to valley.  This profile map shows what that looks like.  We completed the whole circuit after 10.5 days of hiking around 9 miles a day

A Meadow Kissed by Spring

A Meadow Kissed by Spring

Crossing a Snow Field

Crossing a Snow Field

On a trail like this there are no restaurants, no hotels, and no fast food restaurants where you can stop in for a McPee.  Everything needs to be carried in and carried out, which means we were carrying all of our supplies on our back; tent, sleeping bags, clothes, and food.  The sounds and sites of nature completely surround you, and there is no connection to the outside world

We hiked through amazing meadows bursting with wildflowers, across seemingly endless snowfields, and through fog as thick as soup.  We saw baby black bears playing with their toes, a herd of elk grazing in our back yard, and made friends with a marmot.  We bathed in streams fed by glacial melt and in mountain lakes, and ate our meals overlooking glaciers, tree filled valleys, and majestic snow-capped peaks.

Baby Black Bear

Baby Black Bear

A Friendly Neighborhood Marmot

A Friendly Neighborhood Marmot

All of the food for this journey, we prepared in advance.  To minimize weight, we had no cooking stove; just a small wax burner to heat water for tea.  All of our food was 100% raw vegan, mostly dried fruit, nuts, homemade spiced flax crackers, and tea.  For the first few days we had fresh fruit and vegetables, and a few times we harvested wild blackberries, mountain blueberries, and salmon berries. One of our favorite savory snacks was a cracker made from flax seeds, sunflower seeds, raisins, and curry powder.  A curry cracker (recipe)

The whole experience was incredible.  The raw natural beauty was heart-stopping at times, spiritual even.  So much so that we’ve talked about doing The Wonderland Trail again in the future, and also some longer trails such as the 210 mile John Muir Trail that passes through Yosemite National Park and takes upwards of 30 days to finish.

But you can imagine that the trail was also a real challenge.  Some days were grueling, with hours and hours of upward climbing.  For about 48-hours, we couldn’t see more than 10 feet in front of our faces.  We awoke one day to rain and were soaked to the bone from the moment we stepped outside until the moment we crawled back into our tent 12 hours later.  In some places, the mosquitoes were as big as bats and so numerous that they blocked out the sun.  Or at least it felt like it at the time.

During times like these, sometimes people need a bit of a pick-me-up, something to lift the spirits.  It’s not like you can just decide to go home, the only way out is forward.  Some people turn to alcohol in times like these, or perhaps make a phone call to a friend or loved one.  Sadly there was an absence of liquor stores and cell coverage on the trail.  Instead, we found our energy boost through an accidental rallying cry… Go, Go, Go!  Go… Curry Cracker!

It’s amazing the things that you think up and find humorous when you are cold, wet, hungry, and exhausted.  From that day forward it has been our motto, our theme song, our anthem, and a source of inspiration.  Ain’t nuthin gonna stop us now, we can do anything.  Go Curry Cracker!

If you ever find yourself in dire straits and in need of a boost, feel free to use it yourself.  It’s effectiveness is 100% guaranteed.  Use it wisely, and use it with enthusiasm.  Go Curry Cracker!

Retire Early.

Travel the World.

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