“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.”
She’s right! We took a day trip yesterday to an amazing location filled with hiking paths and waterfalls. Though I’d say I have pretty strong legs, my balance could be better. Anyone who knows me knows that I have zero sense of direction. Once when Jay and I were newly married, we were headed to Massachusetts on a trip to see his grandfather and it was my job to navigate. We got about 2/3 of the way there, then I dropped the triptik (remember those from Triple A?) got on the wrong page (the return trip) and a half hour later, he realized we had just been where we were going. I still say that love blinded me, but I really have zero sense of direction. God bless him. Around we turned and off we went with him at the helm.
It hasn’t gotten better as much as I try. I can look at a map and it makes no sense. I can look at a sewing pattern and it’s no big deal. I can decipher it in no time. I guess it’s just the way our brains are born.
￼This looks easy to figure out. Once we got on these trails meant for goats, there was no turning back. We took the green , easy trail part way down and then were quickly on a black difficult trail. Going down was tricky in some spots because it could be slippery in places. I’m sure I got some pictures of that, but here we are at the start.
The trail was full of really interesting trees, rock formations and plants, that I couldn’t help stopping and taking pictures.
We came for the falls, but there was so much more to see and learn about. I’ll have to look it up. Once on the descent, I was too busy looking down and watching my step.
Here’s our sweet Madison framed by this amazing cut. As I look at the rock on the right, it looks like the profile of an Egyptian man. Like Yul Brenner in the 10 Commandments!
It just amazed me how the tree roots intertwined around each other to hold each other in place, especially near the edges. “I won’t let you fall”, I could hear them saying to each other. It was challenging, but we did it.
I think we figured that we did 7 miles. We didn’t intend to do the whole difficult path but we did and are better for it. You definitely need to prepare. Water, hiking shoes, snacks. It took us a little over 3 1/2 hours. Add all of my stopping and taking pictures and I brought up the rear.
So, how did I prepare? I read a book years ago called “And Not to Yield” about a mountain climber and thought that might be on my bucket list, but as I’ve gotten older, realized that maybe it’s not. My hiking buddies are all pretty fit. But I’m not an athlete as I’ve shared. I DO think that hula hooping has really helped my balance, core strength, AND redirecting the balance quickly. You’d have to come hoop with me to see what that means. It works your brain. You are constantly redirecting your balance. It’s pretty unique.
I also prepared by bringing 2 pairs of hiking boots and I am so glad I did! Not to be a name dropper, but I’ve learned to buy quality for things like this. My Dad loved L.L. Bean, as does Jay, and I had L. L. Bean hiking boots and a pair of Merrill’s for years that I’ve loved. Before we even left our camp site, the soles fell off my Bean boots. What? I just walked right out of the soles.
Even Connor couldn’t believe it! They both came off at exactly the same time. So thank goodness I had another pair of the Merrill’s which performed like champs. Add long pants, my navy Sierra Tank Dress, bug spray and a small backpack to the list of preparations and off we went. Thank goodness this didn’t happen on the trail.
What was the temptation? To take the short route and I’m glad we didn’t. I think we saw most of the falls and so much more! Im glad we did it.
No hiking for the alpacas today, it’s a day full of chewing for them.
Advice on hiking prep and it’s amazing how much we do in hooping.
Looks like another amazing day ahead! Seize it!
In the meantime, remember to wash your hands, don’t touch your face, get outside for some fresh air and keep the length of an alpaca cria (which is a baby alpaca and about 3 feet long) between you and the next person.
Have a blessed day!