A Travellerspoint blog

August 2012

Happy Birthday In the Backcountry

IMG_8430.jpgDay 5: Happy Birthday Justin

Happy Birthday Justin! 36 years old!!

I started this page at 6:30 a.m. and the only one awake. I’d hung up a happy birthday on crepe paper banner between the trees then went to set in the sun.

I was sitting on a hill behind the camp with the sun coming up over the mountain so the camp wasn’t bathed in sun yet. The hill isn’t heavily forested with lots of rocks and some debris from the trees and small grass filling in. The sunlight was filtering thru the branches of the trees turning the bark to orange and red.

It was cold, really cold but the cup of hot coffee felt good in my hands and going down the throat. I thought that this would be our last full day so was determine to enjoy it.

Justin woke up before we’d decorated more but we blew up balloons and hung them on the banner. Charlotte made French toast out of left over bread and I made syrup from freeze dried blueberries, water and sugar. There was just enough bread to give everyone a piece or two.
Justin hadn’t slept well and neither had most of us; too cold. Justin thought that he’d really like to start down and go on home. We agreed that we’d love to have a better night sleep. So we started packing up to hike back. IMG_8438.jpg

The trip down the hill was uneventful, stopping for lunch by a stream. Kids played in one stream, throwing rocks into the water and pretending to catch fish. IMG_8443.jpg

We would have made it home that night after eating a birthday dinner for Justin but alas, there was a car issue so we were stuck in Lone Pine overnight. But we were very happy for the shower at the motel room.

Posted by Miss Chris 13:40 Archived in USA Tagged people food nature hiking family wine backpacking outdoors family_travel grandkids gluten_free sierras inyo_national_forest hidden_lake Comments (0)

It's About the Journey

The destination is important too but it is how you get there.

sunny

There are not many better places to write in this world. I’m sitting on a log with trees around me, a deep blue sky, a lake in the background, no noise except our voices. IMG_8408.jpg

One thing I haven’t written about is that hiking with a pack in a high altitude setting is hard work. I’m slow, slower than slow, slower than the slowest. It gets discouraging at times. It gets discouraging to be the slowest of the slow. The packs are heavier than heavy. The back hurts, feet and toes hurt. Lungs are gasping for air, sucking the pine needles off the trees like Cam said so perfectly. Throat is dry from sucking the air, so dry that to swallow makes you sick. Meanwhile after hiking for what seems so long one finds that they are only ½ way there. Covered in dust from the trail one comes across a rock large enough to sit on and rest the pack on at the same time. You look out to see the landscape, quiet, maybe a stream nearby surrounded by nature. This is what it is about. Justin put it so succinctly: “it isn’t about the destination, it is about the journey”.

Arriving at the destination though is a feat of accomplishment for someone like me. I’ve made it! I can do it! Living up to the expectations of the grandkids is what I must do. And yes we didn’t make it to all of the lakes we wanted to but we made it.

Then to eat good tasting food and to have the grandkids say they love the food, we know that we succeeded in our goals. To have others decide, after much laughing, that yes the wine was a great idea and that they will bring wine next time so that instead of a couple of sips of mine on one evening there will be a glass every evening.
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Everyone except the little kids and me went on a hike to a ridge that overlooks the valley. I was impressed that Cam made it to the top. It took all his will to do this but he made it to stand on top of this bit of the world. Kids fell asleep, tired from the past 3 days of hiking and hiking. I enjoyed my time alone.IMG_8339.jpg

Posted by Miss Chris 10:02 Archived in USA Tagged people food nature hiking family wine backpacking outdoors latte family_travel grandkids gluten_free sierras inyo_national_forest hidden_lake Comments (0)

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