Miles today: 27

Trail miles sum: 1270.3

Trail location: 1952.6

Elevation: 4901

Spinning on the turntable: Garbage: Garbage

I’m enjoying the serenity of my early morning hiking. There’s just a few moments when the sunlight is perfect and the landscape is golden. This is my cathedral.

I hike without music, earbuds out, but tuned into the rhythm of my body and the rhythm of nature. Often this is the one and only time of the day when my body and nature are in sync.

I’m awake, yet still drowsy. I’m drowsy, but still aware. I meditate, but I don’t contemplate all those big life issues. This is my alone time, even alone time from my own thoughts, and I guard it jealously.

I was caught in a hail/sleet/rain storm this afternoon. It. Really. Sucked.

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I took shelter under a tree and waited out the worst of the hail. The hail continued to strike me on the head and shoulders and it really, really hurt!

Once the worst of the hail had passed I resumed hiking. The trail was flooded and after a few ill fated attempts at keeping my feet dry I gave up and just walked down the center of the trail. Squish. I can live with wet feet, but my toe calluses go a little crazy with too much moisture for too long a period of time.

The rain kept pouring down. As I passed SOBO’s we all pretty much had our heads down and we were hustling to be anywhere except where we were at that moment in time.

I continued to hike. Wet and cold. No choice except to move on.

I met up with Noelle and together we hiked back to the van. Cold and wet.

The point and shoot camera that I carry (Sony) didn’t appreciate the rain water that seeped into its carrying case and has stopped functioning. I’ll let it dry out for a few days and see it it starts working again.

We went to Elk Lake Resort for a burger and a brew. We hung out with other hikers for a spell and then headed off to sleep.

The discipline in the preparation of daily hiking is challenging to me every single day. Eat the right food, stretch, rest, repeat. I want to hang out and chat with other hikers, but bedtime, and my waking time, both arrive early.

I must maintain focus.