Articles written by Stephanie Seppanen

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  • A dozen years pass in the blink of an eye

    Stephanie Seppanen|Updated Jun 21, 2023

    Recently I was having a conversation with a mom of two school-age kids. "Only 10 more weeks until school starts!" she said, already feeling drained with near constant summer activities and endless questions asked by her daughter. I nodded my head, because I vividly remember those days, running after three little boys and counting down the hours until my husband came home from work. I reminded my friend of the saying, "The days are long and the years are short," a cliche so...

  • Making peace with road less traveled

    Stephanie Seppanen|Updated Aug 24, 2022

    "The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry." - Robert Burns Ever since I started backpacking, I have wanted to hike the John Muir Trail, a 213-mile long distance trail in the Sierra Mountains in California. The trail starts in Yosemite National Park and ends at Mt. Whitney, the highest mountain in the lower 48 at 14,505 feet. The JMT is known as one of the most beautiful hikes in the world, and permits are hard to obtain with a lottery process occurring exactly 168...

  • Much to learn on 100-mile hike

    Stephanie Seppanen|Updated Sep 20, 2019

    I have long dreamed about backpacking the Appalachian Trail and in July, that dream became reality. I've gone on organized hiking trips in the past, but this adventure would be different. No guide or timeline - just fly in, strap on my pack and head north. I found a hiking partner, bought a one-way ticket to Dulles, took an Uber to Harper's Ferry, W.V., and started walking. Our daily routine consisted of hiking, eating and sleeping. The distance we hiked depended on the sorene...