Posted on April 22nd, 2013
Oh man, I’m trying to get it together to write a post today about our backpacking trip this past weekend. And I’m wondering, “Why do I do these things?” and “Should I ever do them again?”. I’m learning about the body as it ages and discovering there are many things I do not know about it.
We hiked up a mountain and along a ridge to our campsite. We camped for a night and then went up some more to McAfee’s Knob where we could view our trail from the prior day. You learn things about yourself when you do things like this with 25+ pounds on your back. For instance, when I arrived at the campsite and set up my tent the only thing on my mind was getting inside and curling up in the sleeping back. Temperatures were falling into the low 40′s, high 30′s. But I was cold and started shivering (one of my least favorite things to do). So I cooked up some Ramen Noodles and later returned to bed happily discovering that it was 20 degrees warmer in my cozy tent although the temperature had dropped some more.
Some of our group went up to McAfee’s Knob to view the sunset and get some great photos of the golden light hovering on and around the rocks, the trees and their happy faces. But I could not do it and had to wait until the following day when the entire group passed through there on our way back to civilization.
Hopefully, I will figure out how to get beyond this impasse but at present it seems as if this 60+ year old blogger has missed the cut and needs to dial back some of his adventures. I see older folks on the trail and they seem to be doing quite well. So I’m not sure what to do. Falling behind is not really a problem. The woods are made for solitary walks. But I did not reach the end of the hike until the others had been there for an hour and my legs felt, perhaps, like those of someone who cannot walk at all and is confined to a wheelchair.
I have walked and run in the past 18 months enough to cross the US and returned a good ways. But there were too many fires in my legs the past two days. The pain(lactic acid?) was going up my thighs and into my hips over and over again. It was more difficult than running the half-marathon. Perhaps running and hiking require too different training regimens and do not reenforce each other. Maybe I need to eat more protein when I’m out there. I don’t know. But I did have a great time being with the other hikers and viewing the vast expanses beyond the rocks. There were lots of photo ops on Sunday morning. And we had a great meal at a restaurant in Staunton after the event. Central Va Trailblazers, you rock!
Here are some photos.