Upon returning to normal life, I found that I handled challenges much differently than I had before my journey. I now had the courage and confidence to face challenges head on. Instead of feeling completely stuck and hopeless in the circumstances of my life, I fought for better outcomes and followed through with making important changes and difficult decisions.
With my new found confidence, I quickly secured a great job that payed more than any job I’ve had before. I found that I was much happier, loving, and accepting of people and new situations...while at the same time I was better able to identify toxic people and situations, and I now had the courage to walk away from those situations instead of getting sucked up into them.
I had more joy in my life. I was excited to try new things, I even took up riding motorcycles, something I thought I’d never do. I felt like a new man with and a new lense through which to view the world.
Three years after returning from the last quest,
I felt called to take on an even greater challenge, to hike across the entire United States from Coast to Coast.
Knowing the enormous positive effects that such an adventure can have on a person, I decided I wanted to dedicate this hike to raise funds for other veterans to go on similar long-distance adventures. The therapeutic effects that come with taking on such a journey is undeniably powerful and incredibly healing.
I know from experience, that for many veterans who are living on the brink of suicide, embarking on a long-distance adventure could be just the right thing to radically transform their lives to something better than anything they could have imagined...and this journey is an effort to realize that, both for myself and for the countless veterans out there who are struggling.
I hope my journey serves as both an inspiration and an introduction to the world of
long distance adventures for veterans, as I raise funds to pay for those vets to go on such adventures for themselves.
That experience ended up being so much more than what I expected in every way. It brought me infinitely more joy and fulfillment than anything I had ever done in my life. The journey tested me constantly and forced me to grow as a person in order to breakthrough new challenges.
Every day was packed with breathtaking views, every mile was completely different than the last. I met countless wonderful people and I still keep in touch with many of them years later.
Dealing with an old injury on the trail taught me patience and self-care. Record snowfall in the High Sierra forced me to become a tougher version of myself in order to slog through the icy wonderland and to ford the wildly raging rivers.
Out of control wildfires in the Pacific North-West forced me to improvise and adapt the whole plan as I had to re-route entirely. By the time I walked into Canada, I was a stronger, tougher, wiser, kinder, more confident, more social, and more loving person.
Click the link below for the YouTube video series of my 2017 PCT journey 👇
My name is Alex Seling. I am a U.S. Army veteran, I served as a Combat Medic with 25th Infantry Division, 2-27 Wolfhounds and deployed to Iraq in 2008.
For years after leaving the military I struggled with severe depression, anxiety, and insomnia, eventually leading to serious suicidal thoughts.
In 2017 I’d finally had enough suffering so I decided to do something different that would force me to grow and transform into a healthier, happier person. I decided to take on my first thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail, from Mexico to Canada.