we spent the entire weekend in the woods and i feel oddly recharged and exhausted, if such a thing is possible. like, a pleasant sense of exhaustion that comes from hard work i guess is how i would describe it.
friday we left after securing the dogs weekend plans and david
had come home from work. we drove to southern ohio to hocking hills (a
pleasant +1 hr trip). to our shock when we go to our check in we
realized i had made a little boo boo and our camp site was the sort you
leave your car, throw your gear on your back, and hike into the woods.
needless to say it was 90 degrees and we had to take 3 trips, which was a
1 - 1 1/2 mile trek into the woods. oy vey.
was in a sour mood, after a long, hard day at work and now this. we
pretty much threw up the tent and collapsed in a sweaty pile. the night
was pretty bad. i could not get myself to fall asleep and when i did, i
woke up having a "serotonin surge" (uncontrolled, unprompted rise in
heart rate, tingling, dizziness, which naturally then progresses to a
panic attack). what a way to wake up! but i gripped davids arm until he
woke up and we talked for a while until it passed. we had no way to keep
track of time on our trip - i highly recommend this while on vacation -
but i would guess around 2-3 AM we heard raccoons having what i can
only imagine was an animal version of a beat it style knife fight
over the hershey's chocolate bars we had stuffed into our cooler. we
had wedged the cooler under the picnic table but there was apparently
enough space for them to stick their wee little arms in and grab the
chocolate as well as eat a yogurt cup handful by handful. the scuffle
woke david and i and we spent the next hour laughing and trying to scare
them off before properly securing the cooler. there was no further
raccoon molestation on our trip!
first full day we got up bright and early and went to the main attraction of the area, old man's cave and it's nearby waterfall.
we skipped rocks and showed the children all kinds of rocks and
sedimentary stuff. it was very cool and they were bouncing off the walls
with happiness to be Actually Hiking Something. we later drove to a
campground and went swimming like we owned the place. the woods was cool
but i was so excited to sit poolside and feel cool and read a book.
which reminds me, we brought no less than 5 adult books between david
and i which we sat beside the fire with our lanterns and flashlights and
read each night after the kids went to bed.
day two we again got up early, hiked to the car, and went to two caves - ash cave and rock house.
rock house is a former hangout for old timey horse thieves, murderers,
and robbers which made it all that cooler to the kids obviously. then we
went antiquing for an hour or so before getting on a bus that took us
along the river to canoe. we were overly ambitious and chose a 7 mile
long trip and we ended up dead tired and starving 4 hours later.
apparently half of the state had the same idea because there were
hundreds of people, most of whom were wasted, on the same river. it was a
bit frustrating to be surrounded by so many people who were hooting and
cracking beers, getting in our way, while i'm just trying to paddle my
freaking way back to civilization without dying of heat stroke in front
of my children. when we landed david announced that we would not be
going back to the car to drive back, to hike to our tent, to start a
fire to cook on, WE WERE EATING AT ARBY'S. definitely could have made
out with him right then and there i was so happy.
all in all the
trip was amazing. it's so good to get disconnected from the
city/stimulation/technology and be in nature. humans NEED that sort of
treatment. i didn't even mind sleeping on the ground for three nights!
the weather was hot during the day but the woods were around 5 degrees
cooler and the caves cooler than that. the nights were clear and cool
and eating s'mores around a fire with the three people i love most in
the world? sign me up for more.