Hennops Hiking Trail

If I were to choose a word to best describe the year 2020; the word interesting would be an understatement. The year had a rocky start including the US looking like it wanted to start world war 3, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry leaving the royal family and Brexit becoming a reality. However, nothing could have ever prepared us for the new normal that we would have to adjust to which is life with coronavirus.

The corona virus meant that everything in life would be put on hold – exercising, weddings, church, parties, dining out, alcohol were a thing of the past. So when the president announced that the economy would be reopening, I naturally checked whether my favorite hiking spots were open in order to see the outside world again. So I invited a group of my friends on a 10 kilometer hike. Mind you, we had not exercised outside in three months because it was illegal. Below are the lessons learnt from the Hike.

2.5 kilometers

The first couple of kilometers were amazing. We had lots of energy and excitement. The view of the river was spectacular, but instead of trees on the horizon; in contrast we saw a forest of shacks on the horizon.

Lesson 1: At the beginning of your journey, you will have an abundance of energy and will want to take over the world. Keep the momentum going.

5 kilometers

At this point, my leg was beginning to give up on me which was proof that this was a mistake, but I still soldiered on. The terrain started to be extremely steep and I was convinced that we had finally reached the 7km mark but the sad news was that we had covered less than half of the planned route.

Lesson 2: As the journey intensifies, you will feel like you are exerting all of your energy without any reward. Keep the momentum going?

Escape Route

Then finally, there was a glimmer of hope, a big sign that would bring the end to my painful leg. However, being the stubborn person that I am, I chose not to take the easy way out.

Lesson 3: There is always an option to quit. Keep the momentum going?

7.5 kilometers

At this point, I do not know how many times I asked the question “are we there yet?” The journey was not fun anymore due to the pain in my leg but I had gone too far to quit. There was no turning back now.

Lesson 4: When you get a chance to quit, don’t take it. Keep the momentum going. You will thank yourself later

Finish Line

At this point, I could hear the sudden calmness of the river flowing and the coolness of the atmosphere which only meant one thing – the end goal was near. I could not believe that we had completed a 10km hike without exercising for three months. So naturally, the reward was food and amazing conversation.

A special thanks to the following superstars who honored our invitation and their company was amazing:

  • Alphie Shikwambana
  • Awelani Mudau
  • Gift Letsoalo
  • Nicola Hlongwane
  • Palesa Mofokeng

Lesson 5: Have the right people around you. 

Hiking is such a refreshing activity but it also teaches you lessons on navigating your life.

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