What is a Hike?
My answer is that what is intended by the word “hike” is anything ranging from a walk to a climb, typically on natural terrain ranging from dirt paths to trickier surfaces such as rocks, scree, tree roots, and even streams. Usually, a hike is longer than a walk. It could be an hour or two or all day. It could also include camping overnight on an extended hike.
“Hike” in the Urban Dictionary
The last place one should look up the word “hike” is the Urban Dictionary unless you are in for a good laugh and feeling a bit of pity for big-city folk:
“It’s like walking except you wear more expensive shoes and have to drive to get to where you’re going.”
“If you are a consumer you do it with boots; If you are an energy company you do it with prices.”
“Hiking is walking where it’s okay to pee.”
“Hiking is like walking, but with lifting the knees up slightly more than one would with a walk”
“Bring a compass. It’s awkward when you have to eat your friends.”
A long time ago, I discovered there were better sources for advice:
“Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in an office or mowing the lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.”
– Jack Kerouac
“Walking is a man’s best medicine.”
“My father considered a walk among the mountains as the equivalent of churchgoing.”
– Aldous Huxley
The glaciers were the artists and the mountains are the sculptures they have left for us to cherish.
– Rick Crandall