by Hugh Elmer Brown, 1913 Essay
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It is hard to shun the "vice of the superlative" in speaking of my trip with the Mountaineers. I had a vacation fit for a king. It was a golden parenthesis of leisure from motorcycles, circulating libraries, bill-collectors, and daily newspapers. The sights and sounds of "snivelization'' became a hazy reminiscence. I laughed in the face of the clock and jested with schedule. I crawled out of the rushing current of life's employment and sat on the bank of complete rest and sunned my very soul
I escaped completely from the over complicated life of the city where folks breathe second-hand oxygen and discuss books they have not read. My pilgrimage was not shackled by the compulsory castles, the mandatory museums, the required ruins, which enslave the traveler abroad. I was free to feed at large in the big out-of-door solitudes; to enjoy the pure hospitalities of life; to ponder the solemn wonder and beauty of existence; to "loaf and invite the soul"
Indeed the Mountaineers are the most interesting, the finest brand of sinners, I have met for a long while. They seem mixed together in a rugged conspiracy to make things go happily.
I had fun, piles of it. I tasted the luxury of adventure. I wore the boots of inexperience over wicked spots of trail. I interviewed the half-extinct memories of my hunting ancestors. I studied horseology trying to make up "backwork." Best of all and above all, I found new friends, who gave and give sparkle and zest to living. Richer than all the gifts of mountain, stream, and wood is the priceless benefaction of a trail-born comradeship.