I really, really miss this.  Going on a hike that is way above my ability level.  Just focusing on putting one foot in front of the other.  Sometimes Dave and I play a game.  We take turns picking a landmark ahead and we can’t stop to rest until we get there.  Dave usually picks something around 500 steps away.  My picks are closer to 75.  Sometimes 10.  Ultimately we make it to the top of the summit.  Below us are the many lakes that only a few hours ago we were soaking our feet in or throwing out a fishing line.  There is always a wind at the top and it is so much cooler there that we have to put our lightweight jackets back on.  We find the perfect spot to have our lunch, usually dad’s homemade sausage, cheese, cherry tomatoes and we share an apple.  I walk around and take a few pictures while Dave finishes off the lunch.  It always amazes me how much he can eat after such an exerting hike.  Before heading back down we open up a package of Starbursts and fill our pockets with them.

Why do I love it, because throughout most of the hike I am miserable.  I’m either too hot or too cold, and climbing up hill at high elevations has my legs screaming, my heart thumping and makes me nauseous.  It is so strenuous that I am wishing I was relaxing on a lounge chair at any beach resort or even my own backyard instead of doing this hike.  Sometimes I don’t even want Dave talking to me.  Why do I love it?  The entire hike I am only thinking about one thing… walking.  I’m not thinking about anything at home or at work or about myself or anyone else.  I am in the moment.  And nothing compares to the magnificent scenery and the exhilaration of reaching the summit (ok, except for getting back to the car, taking off my boots and cracking open an ice cold beer)!

I really, really miss this.

 

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3-26-14 HikingVirginia Lakes, Eastern Sierra