Backpacking, Hike-a-thon, Hiking, Me, North Cascades

When things don’t turn out the way you planned

So we seem to have had a bit of a curse on our hiking life this month, which unfortunately coincided with what was to be my big 100 mile effort for the Hike-a-thon. First I was sick for a week, then I hurt my back (I still have no idea what I did and it’s still painful – I must be getting old), then JK got sick for over a week and here we are and the calendar says it’s September. I didn’t come anywhere close to reaching my goal, but I did pretty well considering all the setbacks.

Ok, so two weekends ago we were all set to go on a backpacking trip to Ptarmigan Ridge with a group of friends. I was concerned about my back, but the doctor said I could go if it was an easy trip (check), if I brought drugs (check check) and if I carried a light pack (check check check and huzzah) – so JK was my pack mule and carried all of the heavy stuff. I could get used to this kind of backpacking!

Feels like fall Soon to be engulfed

Unfortunately, one of our friends had hurt her foot the night before, so they were out. The curse struck again! JK and I set out alone with our two little trail pups and meandered around in the fog until we found a suitable campsite above the lake.

Happy up here

Even though the weather was less than stellar, we had a great time. It’s gorgeous up there even in the fog, my back felt pretty good and I was happy to be out and about with my little family again after being sick.

14 Goat Lake Our home for the night

Bobby and Wellie were hard at work patrolling our campsite for rogue marmots and mountain goats:

Glacier nutrias

The sun started burning through the clouds the next morning and made the lake look even prettier:

Jade I don't want to leave

…and as we were hiking back to the car, the clouds lifted to reveal all the views we had missed the night before. So beautiful!!

So these are the views we missed last night! Purdy trail

Our original plan was to go on another backpacking trip that night, but JK had a fever and wasn’t feeling good and we had to drive back home with a measly 8 miles added to our Hike-a-thon mileage. At this point I realized I didn’t have a shot in hell at making my goal of 100 miles in August and was doing my best not to be stressed out about it.

After taking some deep breaths, I took in the view of Mount Shuksan in front of me and felt the taste of fresh huckleberries still on my tongue and realized how lucky I was to just be out there in the mountains. I’m disappointed about missing out on several of the big hikes and climbing trips we had planned for this summer, but I am not making the situation any better by being annoyed. Just because we’ve been “stuck” doing short and easy hikes, it doesn’t mean they’re worth less than the big trips. We’ve seen some very purdy scenery on those easy hikes!

Mount Shuksan

I think a big part of my problem is that I feel like I wasted so many years being seriously depressed, and now I want to experience as much as I possibly can to catch up…so when I miss out on a planned trip, it feels devastating to me. I need to find a balance between being excited and being laid-back, between perfectionism and failure, between attachment and detachment. And most of all I need to just breathe and realize that we’ve only just begun.

(…and now I have The Carpenters stuck in my head.)

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  • Reply Hildegunn September 1, 2009 at 11:39 pm

    Så flotte bilder du har lagt ut!
    Og jeg er litt misunnelig på alle turene dere tar, så det er supert at du oppdaterer bloggen innimellom!
    Kjedelig at dere ikke har fått til alle turene dere hadde tenkt i august, men det er viktig å lytte til kroppen når den sier ifra!

    Håper at dere får mange flotte turer i september!

  • Reply Solgunn September 2, 2009 at 2:24 am

    Kjenner meg igjen i rastløsheten din fra noen år tilbake da jeg var eh.. ung! Det som faktisk tok knekken på det og fikk meg i balanse mentalt (om ikke akkurat fysisk) var å få barn. Hadde nok trodd det skulle slå ut motsatt vei og kvidde meg nesten for å få barn. Fokuset ble flyttet fra meg selv og “mine behov” og over på et annet individ og kanskje var det utløsende faktor?? Ikke ment som et hint for all del, men bare et lite apropos. Balansen kan plutselig bare kommer fra helt uventet hold. Lykke til, du finner nok roen etterhvert du også på din måte.

  • Reply Trine September 2, 2009 at 9:00 am

    Jeg har fulgt bloggen din en stund, men ikke gitt noe lyd fra meg tidligere. Men nå bare MÅ jeg kommentere altså… :-) Bildene du tar er utrolig fantastiske! Jeg har kikka i bildene fra turene dere har hatt, og det er så utrolig stemningsfulle bilder å se! så skarpe og fulle av farger og detaljer..! Utrolig flott!

  • Reply Ann-Katrin September 2, 2009 at 11:38 am

    Wow, flotte bilder as always! For noen flotte naturturer dere er på.
    Synes dere er flinke jeg, selv om det bare er “små”-turer ;o)

  • Reply Gladie September 3, 2009 at 12:37 pm

    Synes ikke du har noe å rettferdiggjøre – en ting er store ambisjoner noe helt annet er at noen ganger er livet bare ikke helt i takt. Det er noe som har vert sagt i alle kursene jeg har tatt også – om du ikke henger med fordi real life kolliderer, så er det faktisk helt greit. du tar det igjen senere når livet er kommet på skinenr igjen. Og du tar i alle fall noen fantastiske bilder – uansett hvor lang eller kort tur dere har hatt så er det så dønn eksotisk selv for meg som sitter her i fjellandet og har vakker natur på alle kanter. Jotunheimen er min største bragd på turfronten, det var bare helt fantastisk :) Men jeg har drept formen min, og kan bare imponeres over dine turer – uansett hva du selv synes er i alle fall jeg imponert :) *klem*

  • Reply Anilu Magloire September 3, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    My goodness, those pictures are insane. How lucky are you to have access to those incredible paces???

  • Reply Ania September 4, 2009 at 10:05 am

    Synes dere er superflinke som står på til tross for blah blah blah! Jeg hadde blitt nedbrutt og apatisk av mindre :D Så det skal dere ha!! :D

  • Reply Julie October 2, 2009 at 12:48 pm

    I found your blog from an image search for a picture of Mount Si to share with a friend. i’m impressed with how you’ve embraced hiking! I’ve wrestled with depression for the past two years (due to a foot injury that ruined a lot of plans and added a lot of weight) and am so ready to just get out and experience life again. Your blog is definitely inspiring me to keep going and getting out. Plus, it’s a a big contributor to my future to do list of hikes!

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