I NEED to be in the wilderness

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This last Saturday I couldn’t wait to get outside. Into the wilderness. Amongst the trees, fresh air, and sun. I think it was for two different reasons. One, the book that I’m reading. I love it and so far it is one of my favorite books of all time. Two, I’ve realized that with this being the off-season for triathlon and the days getting shorter I haven’t been outside much.

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The book that I’m reading is Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed. I’ve always wanted to do a thru-hike in which you spend many weeks, even months on a trail. Back in 1994, I bought the guide book and all the topographic maps for the Colorado Trail, almost 500 miles from Durango to Denver. I haven’t done it yet, but still dream of it. As I’m reading how the author spends her days; sore and tired, filthy dirty, having limited quantities of food, keeping an eye out for wild animals, constantly seeking water sources, and going for days without seeing another human being, I’m almost envious. To any “normal” person these things would not sound desirable but to me they represent a certain freedom and stripped down reality. I love being out in the woods and experiencing nature up close and personal. It makes me feel alive. I look back on some of my own trips where I hadn’t showered for days, only had rice and beans to eat for dinner, drank chocolate-milk-looking water (filtered of course) from a river, forgot tent poles so had to use some rope strung from trees to support the tent, developed blisters because of hiking steep inclines/declines, burning myself with boiling water, dealing with terrible swarms of mosquitoes, and hearing a twig snap in the middle of the night and laying so quietly expecting a bear or mountain lion to pounce on the tent and I miss these experiences. Once again they don’t sound like something that someone would long for…but I do.

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Lately, when I leave home it is dark. When I return in the evening it is dark. Even thought I live amongst two national forests I haven’t been able to see them as I cruise past. I haven’t been able to get my nature fix. This time of year is harder when you don’t get much sunlight and those hours that are bright and sunny are spent in a basement office, working. It also hasn’t helped that I’m in my triathlon off-season which means I’m not spending 2-3 hours on a bike in the fresh air while being surrounded by the front range mountains, some of my workouts have moved inside the gym, and even my runs that are done outside are much shorter now. I’m just not getting out enough.

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So it was no wonder that I just wanted to take puppy for a hike and “BE” in the wilderness. I didn’t care how far we hiked or how fast we hiked. It was just about being out there in the sun, the snow, the rocks, the wind, the trees and to experience anything that nature threw my way. I was truly craving the outdoors! We hiked slowly, observing all that there was, being present. We didn’t see any animals besides a few squirrels and we only covered about 2.5 miles on the Raccoon Trail in Golden Gate State Park but at least we got out there. I need more of this!

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And in true “me” fashion, I met up with hubby afterwards and we made our way to Very Nice Brewing in Nederland to enjoy a fresh brew! I had the Phunkin Monster which was a barleywine but done up in a Belgian style that was just okay. Of course, I drank it though. I don’t waste beer. Hubby had the Logical Fallacy, a pretty good stout and then followed it up with a Freshie Fresh Hopped ale.

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~ by willtriforbeer on November 5, 2013.

One Response to “I NEED to be in the wilderness”

  1. Thanks for the pictures but most of all thanks for letting me see my grand puppy !

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