Three years ago, my world completely shifted on its axis. I was certain it would stop spinning. On August 29, 2019, I lost my very best friend, my rock, my world! I truly was lost. So, I began hiking to find peace in an ever-changing environment.

When my grandmother passed away, my world seemed to stop dead in its tracks. Although I needed a way to work through the grief and be the strong person I had always tried to be, I was completely lost. I had no idea where to turn and what to do. So, I spontaneously bought a hiking daypack and began searching for trails a new solo hiker could tackle.

Let me tell you. From my very first hike, I completely fell in love with chasing butterflies. You see, my grandmother loved butterflies. She was raised on Monarch Pass in Colorado and grew up with butterflies all around her.

As I began hiking, I would encounter butterflies on every trail, from little ones to very large monarch butterflies. I began to look forward to hiking just to see how many butterflies I would spot along the way.

Finding butterflies on my hikes began to heal my soul. I always felt a huge connection to my grandmother when a butterfly would cross my path.


Thus began my passion for hiking. A very memorable moment for me was on the beginner backpacking trip last October.  Along our journey that weekend, we were graced with the presence of several beautiful monarch butterflies. For me, this meant I was not alone. Yes, I was surrounded by new friends and one old friend. However, the butterfly meant my grandmother was along for the journey as I learned and tackled new things!!

The love I found on hiking trails has been life-changing. Up until recently, I was very much a solo hiker. Through the Wine Hiking Society, I have found an amazing community of women who also have a passion for hiking.