Here are some of my pictures and thoughts along the way.
The day I set out to hike was going to be a bit cooler than earlier in the week. The high was only going to be in the low 60s, but it was my only free day remaining for that week, so I went for it. But first I needed to stop and get some supplies. Namely a sketchbook and a certain novel...
And some lunch.
I have hiked this trail a number of times and the last time I did, I stopped and read for a while on a rock, hence bringing a book along. Oddly enough, this time I didn't see the rock, but my route was slightly different, so maybe it was on the other path.
I packed all of my stuff in my yoga bag because it has good pockets and is lightweight. I brought my flip flops with me on the off-chance that I had some sort of mishap and lost a hiking boot or two. :)
Obviously my hike was going to be nowhere near as strenuous, exciting, or breathtaking as Strayed's, but I couldn't wait to get going.
|My mom offered some useful advice for my adventure.|
The map the visitors' center provided was not the most easily deciphered. I meant to take the more difficult course the first time around, but in my haste to quickly bypass some women with children (loud, but having a good time!) I took the easier route. I quickly decided that I would take both routes--the second after lunch. This suited me and my stomach just fine.
There were some benches along the way. I vowed to stop at all of them. Not because I was tired, but out of gratitude for some unknown thoughtful person who put them along the way for reflection. I wrote this bit at the first wooden bench, overlooking a stream or creek below.
I finished the trail. I didn't actually come across more benches. Mostly because I took the rugged "bluff trail" when the trail split again. But that was good too. Naturally, survival wasn't on my mind, but when I was working that hard and trying to follow the not so well marked trail, I didn't have the capacity to think of anything else.
I did not wind up going to the bat cave my mom mentioned in the text. But I passed by it. I wish I had gotten pictures that gave a better sense of the "bluff trail." There were a lot of rocks and uneven footing. I frequently had to steady myself on a rock while I climbed through a narrow, uneven passageway. It was a great workout. And it was absolutely beautiful.
I returned to my car. Ate lunch. MacGyvered open my bottle of Coke using scissors that I found in my vehicle in the absence of a bottle opener. I had a pounding headache that was not food or caffeine related, so I decided to head home and come back another day.
I had a lot of fun. I hope that I can go fairly regularly this spring and summer.