This outdoor thing I’m trying harder to do on the cheap, so this go around-- as I planned to hike a trail about an hour away from me and wanted to get an early start-- I forewent a 10 dollar campground fee, and instead, chose to camp off a Forest Service road, and I’m glad I did. I just rolled right off there in my truck with a can of Dinty Moore beef stew, a bag of Fritos, a can of bean dip, and my most luxuriant purchase, a six pack of Lewis and Clark Prickly Pear Pale Ale, aka God’s summertime nectar. Also, I had the company of man’s greatest novel, Moby-Dick, which felt even more apt, as 30 mile per hour winds blew in, beating my truck like the Pequod at sea.
But I felt good all tucked in there, and the winds shaped the most phenomenal clouds, and I jumped out and took pictures of them, thinking the whole time, these cloud are going to look even more outstanding when the sun sets, because they were directly to the east. But as the sun started to set, the temp dropped, the Prickly Pears got ahold of me, and I felt like crap after eating all the crap I did, that is the entire can of bean dip and a three portions can of Dinty Moore. So, I was tucked in my sleeping bag, contented to watch the sun set from there, but as it became more brilliant, I realized I would be a bum if I didn’t hop out. So, I hopped out, and I snapped this…
The next morning, I woke up, ate my morning oatmeal, drank my morning coffee, and drove 10 minutes to the trailhead versus the hour it would have otherwise been, and I got a good early start like I planned. I wanted to hike 16 miles that day. First 8 to moose lake, and then 8 back. Instead I made it 3 miles up, then I encountered a river crossing I wasn’t feeling near GI Joe enough to make, especially dragging the dog across too.
I might also chalk my lack of will up to the crap sitting in my gut from the night before. After all there was nothing insurmountable about this obstacle. But if anything, I think it goes to show the importance of holistically embracing the outdoor life, that is, preparing oneself mentally and physically each and every day, so nothing keeps you from reaching your goal when an obstacle does arise.
….Or maybe it just wasn’t meant to be.
On a side note: Nika is totally stoked about her new backpack! Can’t you tell?