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Quite literally this is why I love climbing mountains alone, particularly 14ers. Every time I climb one I go through a range of emotions over the 5-7 hours it takes to reach the summit and back.

When I start there is excitement as I see the peak in the distance. Then as I tire comes doubt and the fight with myself about turning around because no one would know, except me of course. The key is to never stop pushing forward. There often comes a point, especially on a new challenging mountain, where all I want to do is turn around. Instead I just focus on the next step in front of me. Step, breath, step, breath,... Then when I finally reach the top, the view is of course beautiful, but the real reward is looking back at the trail I followed and thinking that's impossible yet here I am.

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