After working in the emergency room for some time and dealing with life and death on a daily basis, Krystian Repolona realized that life is too short and that tomorrow is promised to no one. He decided to make his dream of hiking the Appalachian Trail come true before it was too late; a journey which he completed last October. This year he's heading out on the PCT. His photos are great at capturing moments out in nature and life on the trail. Here's why he hikes.
Why do you hike? I hike because it offers a window into experiences that are only possible by traveling under your own power. It’s a much more intense and personal experience with nature when your hiking ~ 2.5 miles per hour and your able to feel the ground beneath your feet, smell the fresh mountain air, and see the beautiful landscape before you.
What’s your favorite place to hike? My favorite place to hike would be the Maine section of the Appalachian Trail. The terrain is challenging, and intense; but the mountains reward your efforts with incredible views.
Where would you like to hike? In the very near future, I would like to hike the Pacific Crest Trail. I’ll be attempting my thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail this year.
What’s the craziest thing you’ve seen on the trail? The craziest thing I’ve seen on the trail was lightning going off above me when I got caught in a fast moving thunderstorm on an exposed ridge line. I would see the flash of light and then instantly hear the crash of thunder — no delay. I held the lightning position for what seemed like an eternity until the worst of the storm passed. I ran downhill.
What piece of gear do you love and why? A piece of gear that I love and will always come with me on adventures is my camera because I believe photography is a very powerful medium for expression and documentation. Photographers are really historians in a sense that they are documenting a specific moment in time that can never be reproduced ever again. In my humble opinion, the camera is mightier than the pen.
What advice would you give to people wanting to start hiking? Every journey, no matter how big or small, in all aspects of life, begins the same way. A single step forward in the direction you want to go.