Today is a good day. Today I decided that it was time to get back on the trail. Even though I have been riding the stationary bike to get ready to hike, it wasn’t easy. It really wasn’t easy. I did a nice 3.2-mile loop at Ward Pound Ridge and the one nice thing about many of the trails at WPR is that the number of hills are minimal.
Unfortunately, even these small “inclines” almost killed me today. But that’s ok. It was magnificent just to get out. It has now been 269 days since I have hiked. When I started hiking it was a glorious 41 degrees. The sun felt great on my face and the fact that I was actually outside and on a trail made it that much better. With almost clear blue skies and no wind blowing, the silence in the woods was blissful. You don’t realize how loud and noisy the world is that we live in is until you are smacked in the face with an extended period of silence. Pure bliss!!!
So what does this mean? Since I had no issues with my ankle, I am going to resume my old hiking schedule for the time between now and when school ends, which is “get out as often as possible.”
The calendar may say it is spring, but this small pond tells a different story!
I can sense it. It’s almost time. The weather for the next few days looks like it should be for mid-March. With temps in the mid 40’s during the day and high teens to the early twenties at night, most of the snow has melted and now all we are left with is soul sucking mud. Even though we didn’t get a whole lot of snow this winter, the amount of rain we saw was unbelievable. It seems like it has rained non stop for months. As a result, we now have mud that will literally stop you in your tracks.
But that too shall pass. The trails will soon be clear and the warm air of spring will come. Oddly enough, however, one day out of nowhere it will be so hot that I’ll be trying to get my hikes in very early in the day just to beat the heat. But that’s ok. School ends on June 26th and we return on August 28th. That’s 62 days of hiking glory!
But let’s worry about the here and now. With the days getting longer and longer and more days between now and the end of school than in summer itself, I’ll be making plans to get out. Until then, my pack, poles and boots sit waiting.
“Me thinks that the moment my legs begin to move, my thoughts begin to flow.”
– Henry David Thoreau
My original plan for this beautiful Saturday morning was to head out early and get in about 8-9 miles. However, as plans always do, this changed after I was 1.5 miles into the hike. As I walked, my left Achilles started to hurt. I decided pretty quickly that 8 miles was not going to happen and after a short water break I cut the loop short and headed back towards the start of the hike. All in all, I still ended hiking just over 4 miles.
The reservoir across the street from the entrance of Ward Pound Ridge Reservation.
“I felt like lying down by the side of the trail and remembering it all. The woods do that to you…”
Although it wasn’t sunny out, the temperature and humidity today were much lower than on Saturday. Starting at almost the same time, the improved weather made the hiking much easier on the mind as well as the body. As always, it was a great hike and an awesome way to start the day!
“Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in an office or mowing the lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.”
– Jack Kerouac
All week long the weather folks have been promising us that we were in store for a beautiful day today. With temps in the high 60’s, it hasn’t been this nice in a long, long time. After a winter of nor’easters, snow and freezing rain, I firmly believe that we were owed a day like today. Ignore the fact that tomorrow the high is supposed to be 38 and they are saying we might get some sleet, I’ll take a day like today anytime I can.
Starting at just around 6:20 am, the temperature was an incredible 52 degrees and the sky was devoid of any clouds. There is really nothing I can say to describe just how glorious it was! I can’t think of to many other things I would have rather been doing this morning.
My first critter sighting of the new hiking season. He came within a half of a step of going to froggy heaven.
My new friend giving me the peace sign after not losing his life.
My trusty pack and poles resting on one of the rocks where I take breaks.
Taken after several days of rain, I was out hiking and when I stopped for water I looked up and saw the most beautiful blue sky with puffy white clouds mixed in. Since all I had seen for days were grey skies, the sense of relief I got when I looked up was remarkable.