Do you have to get lost to find yourself? Sometimes, yes.
Naively unprepared, alone, and burdened by an incredibly heavy pack and constantly injured feet, Cheryl Strayed set out from the Mojave Desert and, aside from a detour to avoid an excessively snowed-in section, followed the Pacific Crest Trail all the way to the Bridge of the Gods at the Oregon/Washington border; 1100 miles in total.
Mourning the loss of her mother, grieving the break-up of her marriage, and trying to pick up the pieces of her shattered life, Strayed endured the incredible mental and physical challenges of the journey, yet kept going, even when faced with the sudden reality of having to hike a section practically barefoot. The story that she tells is sad and funny, self-destructive and healing, tragic and inspiring.
The story is so beautifully written, and with such exacting detail, that from the moment she steps into the bush for the first time, I felt like I was on the trail with her. And I think I found a little of myself while reading it, too.