Let’s just start with me. My name is Harold Alfano, or Happy… I played a character ‘fonzdot‘ in another life.
I grew up halfway between Sylvan Lake and Red Deer. Farms, dirt bikes, trails, and starting fires was life. I found the mountains young, moved to Calgary. Bought some houses, got a BSc, hated life.
I spent the winter and spring of 2017 meditating, weather chasing, and using free or public use zones in Alberta & BC. I was out to camp, trek, or splitboardboard. My main goal in that was not any epic, it was sorting my mental state out. I needed to find a balance after I sent my marriage down the drain, and dealing with the fall back from a head injury.
I was working towards a trail guiding application in my spare time before that, and had decided that in the next year I would find a job with a flexible schedule in Canmore or Jasper to continue down that path. The career I was following before was not the life I wanted anymore, and taking the required courses, to trail guide treks on my days off, seemed like a great way to share my lifelong love and knowledge of the backcountry.
Recently, I sustained a second workplace head injury in Canmore. I spent Christmas in the hospital, and when I got out, I was told I was moving out of my place. Long story short, I need to find something to do with my life.
I am mostly concerned about not being able to plan AHikeForMentalHealth.com’s 2018 events, as there was a ton to do. I had a really hard time getting back to screens and that was clearly an issue. I feel like I let everyone down, specifically because I have been letting everyone down.
I have been trying to come up with something to do now with my career and life.
My original plan was to start this blog on the weekend, working a regular job, bagging peaks, taking courses, and utilizing my car. I was going to document my journey learning mountaineering, the art of alpinism, and finding myself. A truck with a camper was the next step in this mission, slightly set back on that one, but that is ok.
That is not to say that I have given up any hope. I am a goal setter, and I rehash my goals daily. I adjust them if needed, and I stay on track. This concussion was trying. I had no idea of what I wanted to do, where I wanted to go, or what to do with my life anymore. Just when I thought I had a clear direction. A plan with contingencies. Life is full of surprises, and I enjoy the challenge of learning.
I have been studying and training daily. I have a clear vision of my goals for the future, and I want to share my plan with you. I have a mountaineering course lined up for June, and I want to share my journey with you. My personal journey, as much as I am not doing it alone, of learning alpinism and going after some epic – and maybe some of the 11 000ers in my home, The Canadian Rockies.