Day 14: 200 Miles

So many of you have asked if Michael made it safely through the hitching, avalanches, and forest fires. YES YES YES, and thank you so much for being our support community! I realize that with your support comes the responsibility to keep you informed. So I’ve set a goal to share a story with you every three or four days, and Facebook photos at in the interim. I know that Michael is reading the blog from the trail, and I know that you are motivating him to send these photos each day. This very grateful mom thanks you for that!

This is my new favorite photo. If I could figure out how to work this WordPress site, I would make it my banner background. (I kind of love his trail head starting photo too, though, don’t you? Maybe we’ll end up doing a photo book, with no mention of the neurotic mom story line.)

For those of you who don’t follow Mike on Snap Chat or Facebook, here are some other photos from the past few days:


Summit, 5/10/2017

Mount San Jacinto

Michael hit the 200 mile mark yesterday. Kind of a remarkable thing, to think of walking for 14 days and traveling from Dallas to Oklahoma City. (That’s about a three and a half hour drive.) He says he looks different (I keep on telling him to take some pictures of himself), that his clothes look different (“everything is kind of crusty and stained.” Lovely.) He says the food is working well, but he’s eating much more than he expected to (code for me to up the resupply boxes.)  Apparently he’s doing a lot of what he calls “dry camp”, where he doesn’t have excess water for things like dish washing or coffee, so he’s not using morning Oatmeal or the Breakfast Essential packs he planned on. So its off to the store for more bars for me, as I seal up and send Box 3 today.

He also says he’s spent some money on gear resupply. He forgot to sleep with his water filter the first night, and it froze. His sleep pad, which is an air pad, leaked the first few nights so he decided to buy a new one. Apparently his beloved hat needed replacing–not sure why. And somehow, the glasses and sunglasses we ordered and sent didn’t make it to his stop in time, so hopefully they will keep “bouncing” ahead and eventually, he’ll be able to see where he’s going.

Here’s where he is today. The pins on the map are the towns he’s scheduled to stop in. If you look closely, just to the northwest of Palm Springs is Mount San Jacinto. He walked northeast from there, last night, and stopped to camp in the valley called San Gorgonia Pass:

At 200 miles, we’re both settling into this. He calls whenever he can, sends his messages, posts his pictures, and sounds happier than I’ve ever heard him. A year ago this Mothers’ Day, I was desperately calling and texting Michael at Texas Tech, panicked that I hadn’t heard from him in weeks, knowing that his term was drawing to an end and he was teetering on yet another devastating academic failure. It’s been a difficult year since, as all of us–his sister and brothers, my husband, Mike’s dad, and me and Michael–all worried about what would come next. We argued, we threatened, we cried, we schemed, we dreamed and we planned. Michael planned. He dug deep, worked two jobs he never wanted, but which gave him the confidence he needed, as well as the money, to execute this complicated and soaringly-inspired plan.

On this Mothers Day weekend, I too am soaring. I am grateful. I am confident. I am relieved. My son walks on mountains. Who’d ever have imagined this?

Happy Mothers’ Day to every mother, godmother, aunt-mothers and mothers-in-spirit everywhere. We are warriors, aren’t we?



  1. Beth Ann

    May 12, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    I loved EVERY PART of this post! I remember all too well, last summer and all the questions surrounding Michael’s next steps. Here he is, 200 miles into a ‘start of a lifetime’ for future successes! Here YOU are, 200 miles into being able to proof , one more time, what a super supportive mom you are! So much energy and planning on all ends… this is all happening at a wonderful time! You and Greg…WHAT A TEAM of direct steady support! Whatever you do, enjoy this memorable Mother’s Day, Maxine! I keep Michael close in prayer and smile so often thinking about how HAPPY he is! That’ll be one of the best gifts you’ll receive this year! Sleep well!Enjoy all the goodness!

    1. Maxine Frampton

      May 16, 2017 at 8:46 am

      You held me up last summer. You’re part of this family, and this journey. Thank you for the prayers and the support, for reading and sharing and commenting. Love you.

  2. Nan Downing

    May 12, 2017 at 12:39 pm

    All warriors: yes. Each & everyone.

    1. Maxine Frampton

      May 16, 2017 at 8:44 am

      It’s true, Nan. No two battles are alike, but we’ve all got the scars and the bragging rights. Thank you for reading and following along with us.

  3. Janet

    May 12, 2017 at 2:53 pm

    HappyMothers Day Maxine. You’re a good one!!

    1. Maxine Frampton

      May 16, 2017 at 8:43 am

      Thank you so much, Janet, and thank you for reading and commenting!

  4. Maureen dowling

    May 12, 2017 at 4:34 pm

    Happy Mother’s Day to an amazing one and friend. Love this message. I remember sitting with you having lunch I guess about a year ago while you were praying for a reply. As you have said we just nurture them for a time.
    We don’t own them!!!! What a journey! Thanks for sharing with those who love you!❤️

    1. Maxine Frampton

      May 16, 2017 at 8:42 am

      It’s true, you were with me through the thick of it last year. Life has a way of bringing us full circle, doesn’t it? Thank you for following along with us, and for your comments. Happy Mother’s Day to you, too, my Sister-friend. I miss you and hope to see you soon!

  5. Martin D Frampton

    May 13, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    Hello. Next week I have to walk.. some 25 yards up a grass aisle with Jo Clifford, my niece, on my arm on her wedding day when she has her marriage blessing to her partner Jan. The music will be The Beatles .. ” All you need is love” I hope I’ve bribed the organist to sneak in an extra Beethoven magnificent Ode to Joy from the 9th symphony. After a good old booze up and a” Knees up Mother Brown” I am working again ..the post Wedding breakfast/dinner speech, normally from the father of the bride, except we don’t have a bride or groom and I’m not Jo’s dad. and its not in a church, it’s in a girt big tent in the garden with the chickens and three dogs an d two cats and ducks a pop group , DJ and boom speakers and 82 people.. It looks like it will be a nice quiet affair providing not too many paralytic drunks. The happy couple are off to the Isle of Skye for 10 days to get over it. WE plan a long bike ride. Thought I would mention this so mikeonahike knows he is not the only on having a bit of a tough journey/. Stay with it laddie

    1. Maxine Frampton

      May 16, 2017 at 8:40 am

      Uncle Don, keep these family updates coming. They ground me and I send all of your wishes and questions on to Michael. I take delight in conversation that includes British-isms like “a good old booze up” and “Knees up Mother Brown” and “laddie.” Hold tight during the tough journey, and peddle safely. Love, your God-Daughter.

  6. Rosco Jones

    May 13, 2017 at 9:01 pm

    Happy Mother’s Day from Southern California!
    You made my wife smile and laugh today as she read your posts. We have two kids in college and your wonderful writings hit so close to home. Just know we are having some wonderful weather right now for where Michael is hiking. He is heading into Gold Country (aka Big Bear) where Lucky Baldwin took more gold out of the ground per square foot than anywhere else in California. He might even find a nugget or two in Deep Creek after our wet winter! But seriously I just wanted to thank for the laughter and wish you all the enjoyment of seeing your son mature and accomplish his goals. Godspeed to Michael and to Mom!

    1. Maxine Frampton

      May 16, 2017 at 8:36 am

      Rosco, thank you so very much for taking the time to comment, and for such a lovely sentiment! I”m going to share this information about the gold! Michael is in Big Bear this morning, apparently, resupplying before he heads back out. I’m going to keep your wish in my heart today: “all the enjoyment of seeing your son mature and accomplish his goals.” Amen. Thank you so much. I hope you and your wife enjoy life with two college kids–warning, they come home!

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