A week or so ago I headed deep into the woods for three days. It was magical. We spent four days mostly above tree-line. We hiked past perfect blue alpine lakes, bushwhacked across heather wildflower meadows and spent sunsets on high ridges watching the alpenglow fade across glaciers and mountains. We fought the bugs. The bugs almost won. The best part? We did not see a single person the entire time. Or, a trail. There is such raw intensity being so far from human presence. When following the path means, “follow the goat trail,” or “forage across a giant alpine meadow” or “boulder hop for hours.” When hiking takes a small amount of courage, instead of blindly following the path that someone decides you should follow. Good metaphors for living, even if the hiking is a little hard some of the time.
The first day we hit the trail in the late afternoon. A little belated. No surprise. The trailhead is only an hour or so from true alpine, so we took the lazy advantage and didn’t try to get an alpine start (To avoid all expectation of hard-core, we didn’t manage an alpine start the whole trip. Sleeping-in on vacation is good for you). We hit Rohr lake and its resident mosquitoes within the first couple of hours.