Walking Faithfully

Rob Hausam's blog about walking and other means of wilderness travel, the environment, faith, and the connections between them

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This excerpt from my initial post on Jan. 2, 2010 may help explain what this blog is about:

The intent of this blog is not to attempt to mimic or compete with, but hopefully to be able to complement, some of the other great outdoor blogs that are already out there (from Andy Howell, Phil Turner, Darren Christie (a.k.a. “Weird Darren”), Ryan Jordan, Erin and Hig, to list just a few).  Those blogs, and others, have provided a great deal of inspiration for me – leading, at least in part, to my desire to join in with the group and create this new blog.  My hope is that the somewhat unique perspective of this blog will prove to be useful to at least some of you.  Only time will tell about that, of course!

You may be wondering what does faith, or being faithful, have to do with any of this?  Well, I believe that there are many ways that it is or can be related, at least for me.  Maybe that’s also the case for you.  I want to be clear that when I refer to faith I am referring first and foremost to faith in God – and specifically to God as understood by orthodox evangelical Christianity (no particular denomination implied).  That’s where I am coming from, and my understanding of and faith in God is, I believe, a large part of what informs and drives my desire to understand and experience the natural world that God has created and made available to us.  But, interestingly, my faith, though foundational, is certainly not the only obvious reason that I engage in wilderness travel and both try to understand and also care for the environment.  For I was doing both of those things at an earlier point in my life before I had to come to any clear understanding about or had any real faith in God.

There are other “kinds” of faith, as well, and I’m also interesting in dealing with them.  I have a certain amount of faith, or confidence, in my ability to travel and live in the wilderness, and make wise decisions in regard to circumstances that I will encounter in doing so.  But I also still have a great deal to learn, and many of my fellow wilderness travelers (at least certain ones!) can be of great help in that regard.  I have faith in them, and their judgment and abilities, as well – often much more so than in myself or my own abilities.  I also recently had arthroscopic surgery on my right knee (again!) just two and a half weeks ago – so far I am doing great, and I have a lot of faith right now, based on how things look so far, that this surgery has indeed helped to relieve significantly, if not fully, the nagging issue that I was still having with that knee following my previous surgeries.  These are some of the kinds of things that I’m interested in exploring in this blog.  I hope that you will enjoy it and will also contribute to it.

Now for a bit of bio:


My wife, Lisa, and I both grew up in Sedalia, Missouri (USA), and we now live in Midvale, Utah (near Salt Lake City).  We have been blessed with two children and also now (as of October 2009) six grandchildren!  My undergraduate degree is in Electrical Engineering, and I am a Family Practice physician.  I have completed a fellowship in Medical Informatics, and I am currently working for TheraDoc (now part of Hospira), a medical decision-support software development company.

While I was growing up, our family spent a lot of time canoeing and camping in the Missouri and Arkansas Ozarks, and we all were are still are actively interested in and involved with a variety of environmental issues.  As a teenager (high school junior) I well remember the first Earth Day in 1970, as I was involved in organizing an event at my high school as part of this national “teach-in.”  The primary environmental issues that our family focused on were related to our love for the rivers, as we and some organizations that we belonged to were actively opposed to the destruction of the Buffalo River in Arkansas and others by building dams.  Fortunately, these efforts were successful, and the Buffalo and several other rivers in Missouri and Arkansas are now part of the National Wild & Scenic Rivers system.  Regarding some of the less successful efforts during that time, I am hoping that I will see Glen Canyon restored within my lifetime!

My love for backpacking really began with my experiences as a Boy Scout – especially my trip to Philmont Scout Ranch, and that has continued to be expanded over the years by a number of additional experiences.  The most significant of these recently has been the TGO Challenge trek across Scotland, which I completed in 2007!

And, as I began to mention earlier, in 1974 I came to a point in my life where I first came to a deeper understanding of God and placed my faith and trust in Jesus Christ.  And that has made all the difference!


<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/robhausam/4151706795/” title=”_MG_5096 by Rob Hausam, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2722/4151706795_ce25b3a1be.jpg” width=”500″ height=”333″ alt=”_MG_5096″ /></a>