Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Hike

It pains me to report that this is the only photo I have with which to document a lovely event yesterday. The Annual Hike, otherwise known as New Laketon Woodstock. I realized just after I snapped this photo that my photo stick was full and I had, brilliantly, forgotten to pack any spares.

Pictured here are: The Pope of New Laketon Woodstock (completely obscured for security reasons) and then from left: Eva, Dennis, and NLW mastermind, promoter and organizer, Mary Ellen. In the background, is the Pope's tent which was the only tent at the event sporting an actual porch on which the Pope could lounge and think popely thoughts. Not pictured here is the Pope-mobile in which the Pope may or may not have later circled the festival.

The weather was beautiful, if a little unseasonably warm. FurGirl and I picked up Mom and then drove down to the rondezvous point. The twenty or so of us set off at two p.m. for Sandy Creek (bottom?) hiking for the first leg of the journey through dense steep (downhill) forest to an old gravel road where we encountered a few small snakes, large earthworms, and were passed by a few hunters in pick-up trucks. Experienced hiker Toby was charged with the important responsibility of carrying The Pope's medication in a large backpack. Thus fortified, The Pope tolerated the trip surprisingly well.

Once at Sandy Creek,which looked to be the sandy bottom of (guess what?) a dried-up creek, several brave souls in the group hiked a ways up the bed in search of arrowheads. Many of us stayed behind (as one jaded hiker observed, "You've seen one arrowhead you've seen 'em all.") and were rewarded for our laziness with a lively impromptu management seminar by an up and coming young professional in the group.

Which goes to show you never can tell what might happen on The Hike.

We then posed for the obligatory Group Photo (and if any of you readers have a good one, will you please e-mail it to me?) before setting off on the return hike.

FurGirl was in her element, trotting happily along, usually among the hikers at the front of the group, but occassionally dropping back to do her duty and check on me. She managed to charm Cindy out of some of the snacks she had brought along doing her, "My Mommy never feeds me" schtick.

The return hike was actually a work out with the second leg being the reverse climb of the earlier downhill slope. We returned to base camp at 4 p.m. tired but invigorated.

I'm already looking forward to next year.

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