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Monday, August 24, 2009

You Can't Fall Off a Mountain

Olaiya and I are off to the woods. The Olympic peninsula beckons, with its lush Hoh River Valley rainforest, turquoise waters of Lake Crescent and labyrinthine bunkers high atop the hills of Fort Worden. We'll take the whole work week to hike and camp and cook simple meals over a single butane flame. To prepare, I've dug my tent and sleeping bag out of storage and purchased/borrowed strange devices: signifiers of manhood and independence: a compass, a pocketknife, waterproof matches, iodine pills, 100' of sturdy rope.

I remember backpacking with my parents when I was just 13... and going later with high school friends Andres, Calvin and Garrett. Arcane challenges like building a fire in damp conditions or nagivating a waist high river rekindle something in me. In my mind, I'm already riding the flume. I'm running down the mountain. I'm John Muir mixing it up with an avalanche. I know it won't be like that anymore. I'm too old and smart to leave the trail behind and get into any real trouble, but getting out of Seattle for a while and into some moss-covered riverbanks sounds like the perfect prescription for all my urban anxiety and fretting about health-care reform. Please don't blow up civilization while I'm gone.



At 8/24/2009 10:11:00 AM, Blogger Walaka said...

Criminies, get goin' already! You're burning daylight!

Have a great time.

At 8/24/2009 05:16:00 PM, Blogger Sarah Yost said...

1. Iodine?

2. Please don't run down the mountain and leave my Diz to the bears.

At 8/25/2009 08:53:00 AM, Blogger lowcoolant said...

You forgot something - a flask!

Wait, nevermind... you cannot get ye flask...

At 8/25/2009 08:53:00 AM, Blogger lowcoolant said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 8/30/2009 05:48:00 PM, Blogger John said...

Diz was unmolested by bears.

And (haha!) I already had a flask! I didn't need to get ye flask.

At 8/30/2009 05:50:00 PM, Blogger John said...

Brought Iodine... but didn't need to use it. We were able to boil water as needed each night... and (after letting it cool) put the leftovers in plastic bottles for the hike out. Never had to taste any nasty iodine water.


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