The hiking Stick or Stave or staff traditionally has been a part of Scouting. Baden Powell talked of the hiking stick and its many uses when he started the Scouting Movement.
The Hiking stick is made of strong wood, not just any old stick, it is solid and steadfast.
It provides stability on the trail. When climbing it gives you a lift, when descending it takes the load off and when the trail is smooth and easy, it is a companion.
The hiking stick is usually adorned with a compass to help guide the hiker along the way, it keeps the hiker heading in the right direction and always knows which way is true.
A lot of times a whistle hangs from the hiking stick. A tool to alert others of danger or get attention in times of distress.
The hiking stick is a place where we can show other hiker where we have been, a reminder of the good times on the trail, and memories of some of the hardships that got us where we are today.
The hiking stick is a great metaphor in our lives.
We all need a good hiking stick, weather that is a solid piece of hickory or titanium trekking poles, we all need something to hold onto, something that guides us and helps us along the trail of life.
That stability and support that makes our climbs fun and our descents easy and the smooth times a pleasure to walk through.
Find yourself a good hiking stick.
Have a Great Scouting Day!
*just a note: The picture for this post shows me with a big stick, it’s not the hiking stick I use, it was just laying around that day, but made a great “Lean On” stick.
What you do see in the picture however are other people. And those people are my real life “hiking stick”. Next to me is one of my Assistant Scoutmasters John. He’s my go to guy and a dear friend. Then there is the short fellow, that’s my youngest son. It is he and his brother that got me back into and keep me in Scouting. Then the man in Red with the red hat, he is my Dad. Perhaps the single most important person in my life that has shaped me, and always a good “lean on”. And finally in the picture is my Mom. I can never say enough about her.
The folks in this picture are truly my hiking stick that helps me get through life.
Not pictured are my Wife, my Son, and many other friends that help prop me up and keep the trail smooth.