I spent the last four days in and around Bozeman, Montana, for my uncle's wedding. I've always loved the terrain up there in Big Sky country, and as usual, it did not disappoint. We took in a few mild walks on easy trails to accommodate my grandmother, and even those led to gorgeous vistas. I saw only a few small animals, mostly squirrels and chipmunks, but the peace and quiet of the high forest were balm to my soul. It seems that I always forget just how much I enjoy being somewhere I can't hear the sounds of cars and people, and I am constantly amazed at how much I didn't realize I missed it.
So I've started researching local trails that I can explore this winter near my home, when the temperatures come down to more reasonable levels. If I can get myself back into decent hiking shape during the cooler months, perhaps I'll be able to continue doing so as it warms back up. I've got less than two years until the safari, so I need to start doing something now to prepare myself physically. Gear and book learning is irrelevant if I can't keep walking all day.