You know those days you just don’t want to, well, anything? That was my day. Right when I opened my eyes I knew I didn’t want to do anything, never mind go for 10 mile a hike. I didn’t feel right. I was tired and not into it. I had planned all week to do this hike. Actually, I’d been excited about this hike for months! I woke up not wanting to hike. Normally, I’d lay back down and go to sleep but I had told someone the night before that I was going to hike that day so I can’t back out now, right? Nope. So off I went to the mountains.
I arrived 2.2 hours later dreading it the whole way. This is NOT how hiking is supposed to go. It’s supposed to be fun and exciting. Well, not today, pissy is my middle name! I got out of the car, grabbed my pack and up the trail I went. Right then I promised myself I would never tell anyone the night before that I was going hiking the next day because then I could back out if I wanted to.
I reached the first peak, which was Avalon, and the views were beautiful! I was so happy a friend had suggested I go up this way. I had planned to go up A-Z trail because of how hard the trail reviews were on Avalon. By the way, the trail guides are usually 99.8% correct, it was straight up! You can imagine my enthusiasm while climbing it on this particular day haha
After taking in the views I was off to summit Field. It was a steady climb up and about a half hour later I reached the top. You have a small window to look back towards Mt Washington Hotel which is always an amazing site. One of my most favorite places in the world, The Mount Washington Hotel. This place is magical! If you haven’t been there take the time to go. At least stop and have a hot chocolate in their grand foyer. Tons of history and they say it’s haunted so be careful :-)
I started across the saddle to Willey. I made it about a 1/2 mile down and it’s here where I stopped in my tracks. Here’s where the learning for the day FINALLY started! I stopped and said out loud “What the F am I doing!?” I don’t feel good, I’m not into this one bit and this is dangerous. What was I doing!? Then it popped in my head, “The mountains will be there”. I finally learned what this meant! The mountains will always be there! I’ve heard people say it 100 times but never really got, or felt, what they meant until now. The mountains aren’t going anywhere, they aren’t going to whither away, there’s always another day to summit. So, why couldn’t I have learned this when I was in my bed 4 hours ago!? I turned around!
This was certainly a first! I would NEVER turn around! Never would I not complete what I set out to do! Vanity. Sometimes it’s good to have someone who pushes you to the next level, someone to hold you accountable, but not when you’re doing it out of vanity. That’s what I was doing. I was embarrassed to say I didn’t go.
I headed back, peaking Tom along the way. The summit of Tom is only .6 off the main trail. In case you don’t know, there’s a hidden view if you hook a right away from the summit and bushwhack a little ways out. There was no way I wasn’t getting a view with the state of mind I was in! Haha
After summiting Tom I headed down. Let’s just say the hike didn’t get any better. Everything was soaking wet, I had two hard falls, bruised and bleeding, I was soooo slow, all while dreading every step. Again, this is not the hiking I know. Hiking is exhilarating, fun, hard work and certainly not dreadful.
Man, I learned a lot that day! I learned you don’t hike just because you tell someone you’re going to! I learned hiking is not about vanity or impressing someone. Hiking is about YOU. It’s about pushing yourself up that darn hill, sweating, and loving every minute of it. Well, almost every minute haha Hiking can be dangerous at times and you need to be fully prepared, mentally, physically and carrying the correct equipment. I was not mentally or physically prepared to do this hike, on this day, which is dangerous.
I learned a few very valuable lessons which most importantly “The mountains will always be there”. – Joy Quest