If you ever have a day like the photograph to the right, than you know what my day has been like!
Here in the Redwoods it is either nice and sunny, wet, or it is really really wet.
Today, it was really really really wet – and I had already decided I was going to go for a hike, so no amount of rain was going to stop me!
This was the first hike of any distance since I injured my knee on June 26, 2012 that brought my 2012 hiking season to a complete stop, and threatened to bring my 2013 hiking season to an end as well. I finally got cleared to go back hiking, but was told to take it easy, so I decided to go right back to the trail that caused my knee injury eight months ago.
It was not an easy decision to head back to this same trail. As most of my readers probably know, so much of hiking is a mental challenge. When we first get into backpacking we go out and buy the most bombproof shelter we can find, usually weighing in at 4 or 5 pounds, and we carry at least two or three more sets of clothing than we would ever need on-trail. Eventually, if you stick with it long enough, you get over those mental issues that tell you that you can never ever ever have even a single drop of water get into your shelter, and that you really do not need four changes of clothing. After all, if triple-crowner Speedstick can hike almost half of the CDT in a single pair of socks, I think the average hiker can get away with the same. But, in the end the vast majority of thru-hiking, once you hit the trail, is all in your mind.
It was that same mind-set that I went out today and hiked some serious miles for the first time since my injury. I can be honest with myself and my readers and say that I stopped hiking more than once and almost turned around. But there was that something inside, that drive to keep going that long distance hikers know and understand, that just says “no!!!!”. Continue reading “A walk through the wet wet woods!”