Strawberry Cienaga

Strawberry Cienaga sounds like an exotic dessert with strawberries bathed by scrumptious creamy whipped topping, perhaps with sprinkles of chocolate, completed by a touch of Cointreau … except, it isn’t.

We passed through or by Strawberry Cienaga on our latest Section hike on the PCT.  From the hot, windy desert floor to the snow obliterated trail on the high reaches of the PCT on Mt. San Jacinto we climbed.  We found neither strawberries, nor a cienaga.   Continue reading Strawberry Cienaga

Advertisements

Not a Bucket List

I don’t have a bucket list … in fact I think it’s a dumb concept.  It reminds me of tourists who jump out of cars or descend from their tour bus and take a picture of a mountain, a famous building, a statute, or something else of renown and 5 minutes later are on to their next destination.  Only to check it off a list?  Pitiful.

It’s actually a pet peeve of mine with some who hike the West Coast Trail.  They come to conquer the trail, to knock it off in 3, 4 or 5 days, to report with pride that they’ve completed the famous West Coast Trail.  They’ll speak of cable cars, stream crossings, mud bogs, ladders that reach to the sky, walking across log bridges, and boulders that are as big as houses … and they cross it off their list.

It’s not a trail only to conquer, impressive as that is; it’s an experience, a memory, an adventure. Continue reading Not a Bucket List

Blame Norm

It’s my brother’s fault.

In the year 1999, my brother Norm convinced me that I should hike the West Coast Trail with him … it’s actually a 7 to 8 day backpack trip next to the largest flush toilet (the ocean) in the world.  I’d done lots of hiking, chasing my kids up and down mountain trails, ending up at campgrounds and sleeping in tents … but had never actually carried my home, supplies and all my belongings on my back for 8 days at a time. Continue reading Blame Norm