A Special, Final Message

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Re: A Special, Final Message

Postby Langdon Greene » Fri Mar 28, 2014 12:54 pm

Andy, I have been a sporadic lurker over the past 2 or 3 years. I have digested as much of this site as possible as research to help plan my trip(s) to Glacier. We have never met, and you can never realize how much your sharing has benefitted me and my wife. I am grateful to you for your sharing of yourself and your experience here. Maybe the best way for me to honor you, and your legacy here, is to try to pass it on to the next stranger.

I haven't yet been to Swiftcurrent Pass, but when I do get there, I will surely contribute to what I expect to be the most magnificent trail cairn ever.

Peace to you, and yours.
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Re: A Special, Final Message

Postby Seth » Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:14 pm

Andy,

While we have never met and have only exchanged a few messages on here, I can't tell you how much joy you have brought to me and my family. Whenever I posted a question, I knew that in a few hours, there would be a response from HockeyRef. Your knowledge and passion for GNP have helped us to find a place that we have fallen in love with. This summer, when we return to Glacier for the fourth time in the last five years, you will be in my thoughts. When I'm hiking up to Sperry Chalet & Daw-Pit with your comments folded up in my pocket, you'll be there. When I next see the view from Swiftcurrent Pass, you'll be there. The Chat board will never be the same without you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you, thank you, thank you.

May the next few months be peaceful and pain free, surrounded by families and loved ones.

Best Regards,
Seth
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Re: A Special, Final Message

Postby muddog » Thu Apr 03, 2014 10:45 pm

Andy, aka Hockey Ref,

We've never met, but your stories here have made me crave to see every bit of Glacier that I can. I know there are areas I'll never see until after I take that 'final hike'. I've yet to make it to a pass in Glacier, but rest assured that when I do, I'll find a worthy rock at the trail head, and carry it the distance until I reach the cairn at the summit to deposit in your honor. May your remaining time be filled with laughter and fond memories, and most importantly peace. I'll see you at the summit when my time comes.

Ted Van
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Re: A Special, Final Message

Postby GoDucks » Mon Apr 14, 2014 12:24 pm

Hockey Ref:
I am an irregular visitor to this page, so am just now discovering this thread. My wife and I have visited Glacier only once and we have never met you. But, I would be remiss if I did not thank you for how greatly you enhanced our trip with your enthusiasm on this forum, especially for, yes, The Hockey Ref Hike. Your description of that hike was such that I knew I had to do it, and I did. This was about 6 years ago, and, at the time, I posted a description of how, for me, The Hockey Ref Hike turned into one of the most memorable hikes of my life, accompanying a group of young ladies old enough to be my granddaughters, all of whom were Park Cafe employees. The hike included a climb to the summit of Swift Current Mountain before heading over the pass and back down to Many Glacier. The photos from that summit and its lookout led to a long term email friendship with artist, and sometimes forum poster, Roy Hughes, who turned those photos into some of his fine works of art. Roy and I share some other life experiences, as well, and he has been a tremendous comfort to me when I needed it.
The point I am trying to make, Ref, is that it was you who gave all of that to me through being what I call a Glacier Evangelist. Without reading your effusive commentary about your namesake hike, I probably would have thought it too much for me to attempt at my age, but with your comments, I knew I could do it. No: I knew I had to do it. I am sure I am far from alone in that. And, when I describe that hike to other people, I, too, invariably refer to it as The Hockey Ref Hike and always will. Thank you, and best of luck in your continued battle.
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Re: A Special, Final Message

Postby PJ » Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:21 am

I have not checked this forum for quite a while, and I am so sad to read your post. Last year my husband was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer in late January - and this forum helped me through it. I knew our regular backpacking summer vacation would be out of the question after his surgery, so I was looking for an alternative. And Glacier fit the bill because of the easy access to the high country that GTSR provided. I started reading the archived trip reports every night - part trip planning - but honestly more as an escape to a happy place so I could sleep at night. Imagine how stunned I was while reading through the archives to discover that one of the park experts was undergoing treatment for cancer himself and was still going to the mountains and and hiking. It was so encouraging to my husband to know that he would be able to have a wonderful summer experience in some of the most beautiful mountains on earth - and using information from you and others - he did. And so did I. Thank you for taking the time and effort to post so much information for the benefit of others. Your words, and your work here, will endure to serve and encourage countless others. One of my favorite Bible verses says "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help." I never met you personally, so I don't know what your spiritual beliefs are. But I think that verse - written so long ago - shows that man has always derived comfort, peace and joy from the high places. As does everyone of us that have been fortunate enough to spend time in Glacier NP. Thank you, Hockey Ref.
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