Home / Editorials / A Sherpa’s Tale

A Sherpa’s Tale

Steve Hanlon - Wooden Box

Hikezilla, a regular section hiker reader and guest poster (see Alcohol Stoves: Timing your Boil), started working at my company a few weeks ago. Although we’ve known each other for 15 years, we only discovered that we shared a love of hiking and The Appalachian Trail last year.

Among his many talents, zilla is a cabinet and furniture maker, trained at the famous North Bennett Street School in Boston. At one point when I was fiddling a lot, I thought about quitting the software industry and attending this school myself, to learn the art of violin making and repair.

A few weeks ago, zilla gave me a gift wooden box that he made by hand, inspired by Sherpa story that I’ve been unable to verify but which sounds plausibly true. The story goes like this:

Every time a Sherpa climbs a mountain he brings back a tiny stone from it and puts it in a box along with the stones from other mountains. This brings him luck and good fortune. Zilla suggested that I use this box to collect stones from my climbs in Scotland next month.

What a wonderful idea!


  1. Very cool idea.

    Though based on your propensity for light gear I'd suggest you smash your rock and just bring home one of the remaining grains. ;^)


  2. That's an awesome gift and idea.

    I bet in years to come, it will be pretty cool to look at all of the stones and think about how cool your adventure in Scotland was.

  3. ~ That is a handsome box and a fine idea.

    ~ An associate from my working life collected sands of the world. And my mother had a little basket with tiny seashells she had found. Going through them was a contemplative exercise.

    ~ Fun fact: They forbid visitors from taking any sand from White Sands Nat. Mon.

  4. I do that with sea glass too.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *