Just like every morning Earthling had her cold coffee, neither Flailing or I ever understand why. With that we were off up over the trail and hills. We had full resupplies and our packs were heavy, hers more so than ours. For some reason she had decided to pack the raw vegetables to eat healthy, kale and broccoli both weighing more than what they were worth calorie wise. The lack of sleep and extra weight weighed her down, slowing her to our pace for a change. She is always the fastest of us in the morning and for once we weren’t the slow ones. Huffing and puffing for behind she struggled over the hills to keep pace. The lack of sleep took its toll on her.
Reaching breaking point I suggested we take a break and eat, she was beat. We joked and kidder her about bringing the head of broccoli and other vegetables on her hike out. She wanted a change in her diet and this was her way of doing it. Taking the broccoli from her pack I sharpened a small stick, shoving it in the base of the vegetable. Plunging into into the ground, the head of broccoli looked like it belonged their on the side of the trail. Her kale would soon follow suit as we rested. During our downtime we goofed off, threw my knife, rested, ate, and played ninja to recenter ourselves.
Once she had her food out and ate a bit Earthling was feeling a bit better as we started our climb up the first mountain. Splitting up, she took off to conquer the mountain by herself as each of followed suit. In the middle I plugged myself in and listened to music as i climbed the steep terrain. My thoughts drifted back and forth, finally coming to rest on Bill and Amy. Flailing and I had come so far and we couldn’t have gotten to where we were without them. My mind wandered back to their kindness and generosity, all that had pushed me forward. Little did I know Flailing had the same thoughts on his way to the peak.
Reaching the peak, I found myself alone and i was alright with that. Whatever was on Earthlings mind would be hiked out and the two of us with our new boots would be slower no mater what. Flailing soon Joined me on the summit, expressing the same thoughts we sat up my camera and took some photos to send back to Bill and Amy. We missed them, I definitely missed them very much, and we thought of no better way to stay in touch to send them our victories over the miles.
Leaving the peak the two of us set out together to the shelter, both of us had to use the privy and it was the closest place for some privacy. While I waited for him at the shelter, i found the Dartmouth freshman club bewildered. Every year they have an outing for the freshman in the woods and this group was missing some key supplies. With their stoves set up they looked puzzled how to start it with no fire source. Telling them I had a lighter I offered mine up to them before heading out back to the trail. Who comes out in the woods with out the proper supplies? Who packs out non hiking food and vegetables? I tell you its the Dartmouth Outdoor Club, that’s who. Who ever packed these kids gear was solely responsible for there inability to have hot food and such. What a disaster that could have been.
Back on the trail we caught Earthling on the way down the top of the ridge line. She had been concerned about us and was waiting on an open rock face. Our feet were at the limits for the new boots and we made slow progress on the way down. I was not looking forward to the next climb, the only thing pushing me up was anger, i got angry at it. My adrenaline pumping forced me over and up the mountain to the lookout just as the sun came down. Watching the purple sky take over the three of us celebrated another victory before heading down with one headlamp to the road, to the Ice Cream Man’s house we walked in the dark.