Being Frank

day hiker man

Why I became Day Hiker Man

About 10-years ago I snapped my leg in half at the knee playing basketball. I originally tore my patella tendon while in the Navy, years prior to it finally rupturing. It was a nasty surgery, they had to rebuild my knee with parts of my calf muscle and skin from my thigh, and they drilled holes in my patella to reattach it to my tendon. I spent 3-weeks in they hospital and 6-months on my bed letting the grafts heal. After I was able to get around again, I started gaining weight, because I could no longer surf, play basketball, run or anything else I use to do that requires two good legs. I complained to my doctor that my knee hurts, she said “Frank, of course it does, you weight 300 pounds!” she went onto say that I should take up walking, and I did and haven’t stopped. I’m 6’ 2” and I’m back down to 250 pounds and I feel great. I really couldn't put in all these miles without trekking poles. If you too have a bad knee/knees pick up a pair, they look dorky but they really do take pressure off of your knees.

I use to backpack as a teenager and always loved the outdoors. I don’t remember why I gave up hiking, but I’m happy I’m back doing it now. I’ve turned on lots of friends to the outdoors and now they’re into it. Some of them have even bought their own hydro packs and trekking poles.

Hiking is so fun! I love exploring new trails and also love that you just never know what you’re going to see. I’ve seen bobcats, coyotes, deer, rattlesnakes, raccoons, all kinds of birds, beautiful waterfalls. I’ve seen a coyote eat a gopher and rattlesnake kill a rabbit. I’ve hiked to several different peaks all over Southern California. And hiking is pretty much free! One of my favorite places to go is Crystal Cove in Laguna Beach. Crystal Cove State Park has miles and miles of cool trails. Lots of elevation gain and lost opportunities and this place is empty! I only run into maybe 10 people on a 10-miles loop hike. That’s crazy. People should really take advantage of these parks they live around.

Hiking is also good for your body. It’s a great workout. On a 3 hour hike I burn about 2,000 calories. Every morning during the week I take my dogs on a 4-mile hike. I’m very lucky to live by some trails that allow to get out and put in some miles before work. I get up at 4:30 am and I’m done in about an hour. I feel totally energized by the time I get into work.