A collection of rambling posts about gaming, running, and politics. (and, in 2009, photography.)

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

more on camping

This is camping post II, in which I'll try to fill in some details that I'd left out for length's sake, and cause I was kinda posting in a mild hurry.

So here are some of the events that happened on the trip that were amusing/painful/fun to us.

Blisters and missing toenails:
Krissi developed a blister like under a toenail like late friday or saturday. By saturday afternoon, this resulted in her toenail very nearly coming off. Its kinda dead, but still attached, so we figure it will fall off in a few days. To remedy the blister part of it, Maddie, who is an RN, lanced it with my pocket knife, and treated it with a first aid kit.
Jason also ended up with a blister, which was lanced with a safety pin and treated.

Total exhaustion:
Saturday evening when we rolled into the campsite and were considering pushing on the other 2.something miles to the car, Jason was absolutely dead exhausted. In fact, it was $10 to stay in the campsite, and Jason offered to pay it so that we could stay, instead of pressing on. We did stay, and moved over to a campsite, where Jason undid the straps on his backpack and laid down on it, on the ground. And laid there for like an hour, I think. We went and begged some other campers for some ice for him. He recovered, thankfully.

Blood and vomit:
On Friday we didnt cover alot of ground, but some of it was pretty inclined and tough. About three-quarters through a mile or so of steep switch-backs, Krissi demanded a stop and immediately threw up some of what we'd eaten for lunch a couple miles ago. We noticed at this point that Jason was bleeding. He'd developed a nosebleed some ways back and was using a white hankerchief to stem the flow. His white hankerchief was solidly pink already. He said he'd been bleeding for awhile, and just hadnt spoken up. Jason is Mr. Suffer In Silence.

Stranger in the Night:
So Friday night we camped out in the woods, having not been able to reach a real campsite. We'd been hanging food as best we could, to reduce the chance of a raid. Apparently sometime during the night, Maddie heard some scuffling outside her tent, followed by the sound and movement of something *knocking* on her tent. It was of course a racoon or something checking it out, but she responded by growling, and punching back at the spot that was being knocked on. After letting the beast know that she was not giving out candy or food, it left her alone.

Cemetaries and people on the trail:
There were a number of old cemetaries along the trail. We stopped at two of them (I'll find the names). Both were old and had knee high weeds, but were very pretty. Huge trees grew in the cemetaries; one looked like it had been there since some of the people buried there were alive (early 1800's). There were perhaps two dozen graves in one of the cemetaries, and a dozen in the other. There were a few markers that indicated that those lying beneath the stones had been there only since the 1940's or 1960's, while others listed the year of death as being in the 1840's. They were very pretty, and quiet, and peaceful. We also saw a few people on the trail. Actually, if I discount the "weekend campsite" places we went through, we ran into perhaps seven people. There were also some canoers, but still, we saw few people out on the trail. It was very nice. One of the people that we saw was on Sunday morning, as we were completing the almost 3 miles from our last campsite to the car.. not knowing exactly how much further, and eager to get to the car (we were tired and filthy and ready for some civilization), we saw a gentleman headed toward us on the trail. We said hello and he passed headed in the other direction. We chuckled about it, because we knew we were close, as this was a gentleman of easily 60 years, who had on shoes and blue jeans and a button-up shirt on with no pack or anything. Also, since I'm talking about people we encountered.. Saturday evening we stayed in a camp area that was full of weekend campers. It wasnt elbow to elbow, but there were easily a dozen tents within stone-throwing reach. And most were not tents that you would want to carry in a backpack either. One set of our neighbors were unloading their truck as we were setting up and settling in.. a nice lady comes over and offers us some raw burgers that she says they have and are extra. There we sit, filthy and tired, on a tarp on the ground, with a propane canister camp stove, and a pot with water sitting on top of it. I respond that we wouldnt be able to cook them, but thanks, and she wanders away, mumbling that her sister was supposed to have shown up, but didnt, so they have extra food. This was the same two people who, later in the night, talked loudly over beers, singing in that strangled and drunken karaoke (even though I shouldnt be singing karaoke), it makes my ears hurt just now thinking about it.

By sunday morning we were disgusting. Filthy and sweaty. Mostly unwashed. We'd reapplied sunscreen and bugspray with deet, which has a much different aroma than any "off" stuff I've used. Anyway, we were gross. I cant speak for my fellow hikers, but I'd kinda rinsed the grime off when we went swimming friday morning, and again saturday afternoon, and at a campsite stop on saturday I washed my feet really good in a sink, for good measure. So we were nasty. This is funny when things like this happen: We all sit around resting for a few moments during our trek, and when we get up, its pointed out that Maddie has mud on her posterior. She (vainly) responds that it must be taken care of and demands a bandana from Jason. Jason stoically removes the now-not-so-white bandana from around his neck and hands it to her, and she wipes and rubs determinedly at her pants. After a moment, satisfied, she hands the bandana back to Jason, who ties it back around his neck. What a trooper. Jason I mean.

You know the best way to nap is after a grueling hike through the woods in the hot, humid morning, to find a shady tree in a campsite, stretch a tarp out, cover your face, and zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

There is still tons more, and I hear that Jason is currently writing a series of novels based on our adventure.. so I'll see if he posts it here :)

I'll try to get some pictures up and available in the near future.

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