PEI

Why these two women are hiking and blogging their way through the pandemic

A pair of P.E.I. friends say their new-found love, hiking, has helped them deal with depression and anxiety, and get through the pandemic. They're blogging about their hikes, with the hope it encourages others to get out.

Friends sharing their experience on social media in hopes of helping others

Debbie Barry, left, and Krissie Adams say they felt lost in the early days of the pandemic. Their weekly hikes have helped turn that around. (Laura Meader/CBC)

Like for so many Islanders, Debbie Barry and Krissie Adams say the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic were a major struggle. 

The two friends say when all the restrictions started, they felt lost. 

"I have dealt with depression and anxiety in my life in the past, and I felt that I was kind of sliding down that way again," said Barry. 

"It was, 'How do we kind of get out there, and just be us, and basically ward off any of those bad feelings that were coming?'" Adams asked herself. 

I'm a lot more perked up. I'm a lot more happy. I'm a lot more me— Krissie Adams

That's what led the friends to try hiking. 

"We went for a hike and it was sort of like, 'Oh this is what's been missing," said Barry.  

"When your senses are basically being stimulated by the sound like right now we hear the birds chirping, the water flow, it just basically calms you," added Adams. 

From hikers to bloggers 

It quickly turned into a weekly activity — one they enjoyed so much, they decided to share their experience with others. 

Every week, they take photos along the way, and share them to their Facebook page, Trail Adventures with Krissie and Debbie.

Krissie Adams and Debbie Barry say they'll keep hiking, even after life returns to normal. (Laura Meader/CBC)

They hope it encourages others to get out. 

"By sharing it with others on social media, it's really been opening up the different trail options that a lot of people don't know about," said Adams. 

The pair has about 50 followers on their page — some who join them on their hikes.

Hikers for life 

It's a great workout, but they say this is more about mental health.

"I'm a lot more perked up. I'm a lot more happy. I'm a lot more me," said Adams. 

"It's been really great to have somebody willing to be out there with me and willing to be where I'm at," Barry said. 

"We just sort of are there for each other, enjoying the wonderful nature and sunshine."

They say the pandemic may have led them to hiking, but even when life returns to normal, they say they'll keep it up. 

They know now, this is what they were missing.

More from CBC P.E.I. 

With files from Laura Meader

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