By Joe Sigler

This past month, my dad and I, along with another father-son combination, took a week-long hiking trip up to Isle Royale National Park. Isle Royale is known for two things, its beauty and its seclusion. It took a full day of travel plus a four-hour ferry ride just to get there, and we never left the state. Isle Royale is the least visited National Park in the United States, but it is the most revisited, and that tells you all you need to know about the untapped beauty that was waiting for us.

With today’s society’s obsession with convenience, speed, and instant gratification, it is difficult for me to find time for true relaxation and reflection, but not that week. The routine goes wake up, eat breakfast, pack up, hike, eat lunch, hike some more, set up camp, nap, eat dinner, play cards, watch the sun go down, and do it all over the next day. It is easy to be mindful of your place in the world, or your role in life, when the only thing on your plate is putting one front in front of another or watching some ducks slowly drift past in the bay. 

Being away from the hustle and bustle for a week was incredibly refreshing, a time to take my mind off of any problems I was having, and just unwind. Where else will you go a week seeing more moose than cell phones, more otters than automobiles, more days of hiking up mountains than bars of cell phone service, and more fresh air and peace and quiet than anywhere else. That trip reminded me to appreciate the little things, and be more mindful of what is really going on around me.