Hallelujah it’s done, and although I did not acquit myself as well as I would have 10 years ago, I did make it…33 miles… slightly damp, certainly footsore, but still carrying my full pack!
After doing it, I really have a better understanding of the Stampeder’s mental state who slogged literally a “ton of goods” over the Chilkoot Pass, and then hundreds of miles to the Klondike gold fields…I’m sure they had to be desperate or certifiably nuts! But that’s just one woman’s opinion, and just because my visual experience of the trail was limited for the majority of the time to the two foot square patch of ground in front of me, or the backside of the hiker I was following over talus fields and high running streams, it doesn’t necessarily mean that someone else doesn’t really enjoy being soaking wet to the hips and constantly on the verge of barfing!
I know I am whining, but I am still wondering what the lesson in this mini-ordeal was for me. I have come up with a few possibilities that are good for both “The Trail” and life in general:
- Don’t depend on eating too many granola bars for nourishment, after 4 you’ll gag at the mere thought of eating another one.
- Wear a wool beanie…it really keeps your whole body warm, and masks the fact that your hair hasn’t been combed in three days.
- It’s OK not to brush your teeth a minimum of twice a day as long as it is for short spans of time, and you are not breathing in anyone’s face.
- Use at least one hiking pole…it’s really great to have something to lean on over the rough spots.
- Try not to be obsessed with rushing through things…you’ll only end up compressing a 2400 dpi adventure into a 70 dpi poor imitation that looks OK on the Internet, but deteriorates rapidly when you try to expand it.