As I hiked, I pondered how many hours I had spent on this trail over the past seven years. Had I been fully present and aware of my surroundings on each journey? Or had my mind pulled me into the past, rehashing some confrontation I’d experienced which I wished played out differently? Possibly I had been in the future, conjuring up this very moment in which I find myself now, sitting on a once-was mountain, watching storm clouds pass by while baby Douglas Firs dance in the breeze, while the lake’s glassy waters reflect the jagged edges high above.
I have always dreamt of kayaking along this lake’s edges. While the middle of the lake has a granite slab bottom, making it seem as though the water is shallow, the edges are a vivid blue, inspiring thoughts of the depth and the unknown. Is this where the large lake trout spend their time?
I imagine paddling to the opposite side and touching the waterfall, which is fueled by the snowfields above. My fishing line is pulled by the small metal weight, down to the depths of the lake. ‘Not today,’ I think . ‘It would have been a bit much to carry a kayak up the eight mile, 1,100 foot elevation gain. Next time.’
Next time would be different. It would not be this amazingly green, fragrant, or quiet. It seems as though the storms have kept the masses at bay, which has given me the opportunity to think and write. The journey would be different, but maybe that’s good. I predict, ‘Maybe, next time, I’ll have the legs for it.’
Here come the sprinkles of rain again, forcing me to leave my perch overlooking the lake in search of another cave-like boulder to take refuge.
Until next time, happy hiking.