May 25 2015
I left town with Just Mike. Bloop Bleep had decided to wait for Twilight Zone and Wonderland. Today was long. It was the hottest day so far and no water for miles. Mike had a shuttle arranged and I hitched along with him. We hit trail together and walked for awhile talking. He was trying to figure out why I wanted to walk with him. He had a slow and steady kind of pace that was nice so I didn’t mind keeping up. But he was a fast hiker no doubt. He usually got to camp last, but he was always there.
I lost mike when I ran off to get water and have lunch. I stopped at a shelter to use the privy and when I came back to my stuff this fuzzy hiker was sitting across from my gear eating his lunch. No-one and I sat for awhile talking about where the next swimming hole might be. This was my first interaction with a new friend who I hope never to lose touch with.
I got back on trail with the idea of cold water planted in my head. I was walking well at first, but after several miles I hadn’t seen anyone. It was weird. I knew there were a lot of hikers on trail, but I only saw No-one for the whole day. After walking along a steep cliff above a glittering lake I was starting to feel frustrated and sluggish. It was super hot. All I wanted was to jump in that lake. Then there was a loud noise behind me. Stomping and yelling, No-one goes running by. I hadn’t seen anyone run down the trail in awhile and it encouraged me to pick up my pace. I thought: “ Swimming must be near.” So there we were running up what must have been Brown Mountain with this thought of being warm for swimming. I quickly came up on Just Mike as we passed what must have been the “swimming hole” and rolled into camp pretty late. Captain K, Hangover, Gooroo and Flask were hanging out at camp. They were settled in and No-one was cursing Awol for the promise of a mythological swimming hole.
Evidently he came into camp swearing “Awollll!!!!”
We set up camp down from the shelter in a nice flat area. Mike loved hanging bear bags so I watched him pick the highest tree he could and hang the food. I don’t think Mike hung his bear bag out of fear of bears, but more so because he really enjoyed doing it. I was much the same way, but I didn’t really like people watching me throw my rope.
After dinner I jumped in the creek. Mike got in and got right out. No-one and I had a splash fight like two little kids. After sunset we had a nice fire and everyone sat around. I’m not really sure why everyone left the shelter to come to the fire, but I was glad to make more friends. This is the first night of many that this group camped together. We never planned it out; we just showed up. I loved this way of hiking.
I wish we would just show up in life this way; I miss you guys.