I’m off trail. I broke my foot in two places around mile 200, and proceeded to walk on that broken foot for roughly another 800 miles. Very much so determined to achieve my goal, mentally 100% in it, but not knowing why my foot was in so much pain for an entire month.
You can watch the whole story unfold through this video: https://youtu.be/WdVskPFiLJU
Walking on a broken foot is rough. Some days I’d be in excruciating pain, then other days I figure where my bone was more aligned like how a doctor will ‘set’ a bone, weren’t so bad. This drastic difference in what I was feeling everyday added to the ever lasting confusion that was, “what’s wrong with me?” I took 5 days off at an unplanned stop in Tehachapi to see if things would get better. Looking back, I don’t think anything would have changed even if I took a month off right then in there, which would be unacceptable to still achieve my goal. Sitting in that hotel by the second day without the adrenaline of the trail I found I could barely walk from the bed 10 feet to the bathroom. I had to hold onto the walls and prop myself up limping just to get there. A friend who was hanging out saw me do this and I could tell he knew something was seriously wrong, but who knew what.
I made it almost entirely through the Sierra Nevada beyond that, which I’m very happy about. It is by a large margin the most amazing place I’ve ever been in my life. Mountains surrounding towering over everything up to heights of 14,000 feet. This sense of energy and wonder surging through the landscape. Snow still at high elevation even though it was April, and at the valley floor well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. This area absolutely amazed me, just across from the Sierra you have the White Mountains, the Inyos, and Death Valley. How could one small section of this planet get so many cool features? Regardless of the pain, I was happy to be there.
I intended on getting off trail for a short break. I had taken 5 days and that didn’t seem to do the trick so I decided on 10. Finally I got off trail to rest, saw a doctor, had some xrays taken, and my worst fear was realized. I thought maybe the problem was an overstretched tendon, or at worst a stress fracture. Come to find I broke two bones. I remember the moment it happened clearly, descending Mt San Jacinto, getting up from a short break, and tripping. Catching myself with my right foot, and putting all of my weight on it. Immediately feeling a very sharp pain. Some days were ok, and some days were absolutely horrible. Still walking as many as 30 miles a day to stay on track.
I had still fully intended on coming back to the trail to finish what I started, I even had purchased a plane ticket to return after those 10 days. Learning what I did at the doctors office threw that plan for a loop. I skipped my flight, and decided after a full month I would see how I feel and maybe return then. No dice, after an entire month I felt no better. Coming to the conclusion that I need to rest, and focus on what’s next.
Now this isn’t all bad. I’ve now had a lot of time getting a head start in my next adventures. Things I had planned for after this hike. Though I’ve been recovering and unable to hike I have been able to work on a lot of art, a lifelong passion beyond hiking (even getting a job as a local painting instructor.) As well as continue to edit more videos! So a lot of my focus has been on those two things, and I’m happy to report that I have a large stock of videos to share with you about hiking. A ton of new artwork, and a video series surrounding it I’m very excited to begin posting!
Beyond that I’ve made future hiking plans, and have in general been setting myself up as best I can to do a lot of hiking this next year. My big focus will be on shorter trails, and going for speed records on them. There’s a lot of really amazing trails out there that interest me greatly, and it’s been impossibly hard to stay away while recovering.
Plus my wonderful girlfriend Nicole who has been so incredibly supportive and understanding through all of this is certainly happy to have me home, and I’m certainly very happy to be home with her too! In the coming year beside my own personal pursuits of records on long trails, her and I plan to do a lot of hiking together as well. After all she is a long distance hiker herself.
A lot of good to come.
For info on my paintings I just posted a lot of what I’ve been working on that I’m very happy with you can check out here: jupiterhikes.com/art
So I’m back! Hey!!
Here’s to a speedy recovery!
I’m so excited for you to get back to posting regularly! And even more excited for the weather to cool down in Florida and your foot to heal. We have so many adventures ahead of us! (Still can’t believe you walked 800 miles on a broken foot 🤦♀️)
No matter what’s happened, you inspire me with every post. I’m very grateful for hikers like you. Willing to share the ups and the downs. Have a speedy recovery and know that you’ve got a world of strangers rooting for you!!
I want to be hiking when I am in my eighties and beyond what I do now is supporting getting my injury’s healed well now before pushing myself harder. It is mentally and emotionally hard to not be out there on the trail but I don’t want to look back and say woulda coulda shoulda. Wishing you well on all levels.
I am sorry to hear of your injury. You must let your body heal properly. Your feet are important! And yes, the Sierras are spectacular. Worth exploring!
I’m certainly trying to let it heal properly but boy is it hard to stay still!! The painting has been a great way to stay busy and occupied in the mean time. Thanks for checking in!!
Thanks for the detailed and transparent update. Been following you on Social media and pulling for you the whole time. Impressed with your tenacity and optimism. Funny that is our virtual world everyone has an opinion, unsolicited advice and even criticism at time. NICE job not taking the bait and just keeping things positive. Praying a GREAT (and easy) recovery and for your next adventure!
It sure wasn’t the way that you planned on that expedition to end but adventures rarely do end how they were planned. Such is the excitement of life. Glad you have regrouped and made the very best of your circumstances. Looking forward to following more epic exploits of Jupiter hikes!
Way to go Jup! I’m now in Sedona day hiking 5 times a week. wearing LP 4.0 s.
Hi Jupiter,, I am happy to here that your feet is going good, I really like your post and videos.. I will like to know if some day you will write a book on all your experience on the trails…
From NB. Canada
Hey Richard!! Yes I do actually have a book in the works but I need more time, and maybe a few more stories I’ll be sure to update here when it’s getting closer to time!