The walk back was a little slower than the walk out. The entire walk took 3:28, but I walked 18.8 miles in total. I hit the trail at about 8:45am and got back to the car (I was never happier to see my car in my life!) at 3:15pm. The hike was good and I learned a few important things.
- Pack weight is important. I loaded my pack with my tent, sleeping bag, supplies and enough books to equal the weight of my food, and then a little extra. (I had planned to hike with a total pack weight of 35 pounds, so I loaded today's pack to 40 pounds.) Then I added another 4 pounds in water (2 liters.) Yeah. I'm going to find ways to reduce that weight. I can carry it. But it get HEAVY around mile 12.
- I need better shoes. I need shoes with a stiff sole. Parts of today's trail were crushed rock or nicely grass covered. Those were the great walking areas. Other areas (it seemed like forever) were large (half-fist sized) rocks that were loose and moved under foot.
- I need larger shoes. My right great toe rubbed against the shoe and while it didn't really hurt, it was uncomfortable. When I got home, I found that I have a large bruise under the toenail of that toe.
- Have my camera ready. I saw a lot of wildlife, and I would have like to get pictures of them, but by the time I got it out, they were gone.
- I will attempt this hike, but I need to realize that I do have the option of calling for pick up from my wife. Today was good. I wouldn't use the word "enjoyable", but it was peaceful and relaxing. Sort of. But when I get out there, I do not need to finish just to protect my fragile ego. If it gets bad, or if things start hurting too much, I can call for a pick up. And that is okay.
- Take my naproxen in the morning before I leave.
- I don't need to carry 2 liters of water. I think two half liter bottle will be enough.
Other birds seen frequently other than the commonplace robins were orioles, cardinals and I heard (but could not find) a woodpecker.
I strongly smelled a skunk, but only a residual aroma. (I am not worried about large predators while walking, but I never thought about skunks.)
I wore my Fitbit (but that is normal, I always wear it.) Here is what it showed when I got home:
I'll post a recipe or two tomorrow (maybe.) I'll be getting ready for a Mother's Day brunch on Saturday. I'll get the salmon souffle recipe on here soon.