I nearly forgot to post this!
On Sunday, late afternoon, Ben asked Michelle if she wanted to go hiking with him. She declined, and overhearing the conversation, I offered to go along. Poor Ben. He should have thought some more before accepting my offer!
We live not far from a “multiple use area”, owned by the Department of Environmental Conservation. It is hard to even imagine, but we have lived here for almost twenty-one years and have never explored this before! So we drove on down and parked the car.
As we began our outing, we noticed bird houses and a sign off in a distant field. Curiosity got the best of me…I knew these houses were Bluebird houses and I wondered if a bird might be taking advantage of the box. Ben was very agreeable and we walked on over and had a look at the house. I had not seen a box made where the roof could not be removed; we had made some of these boxes years ago and they are supposed to be accessible so Barn Swallow nests can be removed as they sometimes try to nest in these houses. There was no sign of any activity so we walked on. The sign explained the area was intended for Turkeys and it had been so riddled with bullets, it was crazy!
We walked back to the trail and began our walk. We passed by a pretty little stream…
Before going too far, I began to realize that this little adventure was all uphill. No, not just a *little* uphill….it was ALL uphill! Of course, Ben took long strides, looking like he was going to greatly outdistance me within just a few steps! I found myself gasping to catch a breath more than once! Of course, I had to stop from time to time (okay, LOTS of times!) to take a photo or two of the scenery.
Like the valley below.
The little pile of stones marker that someone had made along the way.
The view of Bristol Mountain.
The little makeshift shelter someone had fashioned along the way.
And of course, my hiking buddy. (Who more than once grabbed my hand and helped me trudge my way up the hill!)
Ben was so funny. He was so coordinated, he could actually drink his Arnold Palmer Half and Half while walking! In his other hand was his cell phone. He decided to call Mark and tell him where we were. I also had my cell phone, so Mark told us to install an ap to follow our progress. We did so and as we walked, Mark could look at a map and tell where we were by our coordinates. Ben would give him our latitude and longitude and Mark could see where we were in the woods. We were actually following alongside a huge ravine.
Did I mention this was all uphill?
I used to think the road we live on is steep. Not anymore!
At one point, I was so tired, I sat on a log while Ben continued uphill. I figured I would just sit still and rest. Then when Ben came back, we could go on back down.
I waited and waited. I would guess more than ten minutes had passed. I decided to get up, man it up, and just continue ascending! I walked and walked, not hurrying or trying to keep up with Ben since he wasn’t there! I called out to him and he answered. He stopped for me and I caught up. He was happy I had continued and he decided we should move ever upward! (Would this hill/mountain ever end?)
We ended up walking onto property owned by someone way up the road from us. It is hard to understand the lay of our road unless one looks at a map. While it is definitely perpendicular to the main road upon entering, it takes a curve and winds up parallel as one ascends. So, Mark offered to pick us up on the road and then drive us back down to the car where we parked.
We passed by a pretty pond as we walked. I could not resist its glass-like surface and the reflections….
Needless to say, I was afraid I was not going to even be able to get out of bed on Monday morning. All that climbing! The (really!) good news is, I was not the least bit sore by our adventure. I don’t know why, as I really don’t use my leg muscles that much, other than to climb the stairs! Well, I’m not going to worry about the why’s. I will just be thankful for this time together with Ben, exploring a bit and just having an enjoyable evening “hike”!