On certain occasions all ruminations cease. No more meditations about last year, no more preoccupation with the route around the ridge after the next pass, not even discussions of diner in town five hours hence. Some times you just know you’re about to be rained on and therefore must keep walking.
I learned a few other things the past few days. Most importantly, than when presented with an obstacle mountain goats always go up and around it, while humans will want to go down. Got myself into some unnecessary scree slogging that way. I also learned that the volume of water melting out of a snowfield will be much diminished in the morning. We had a sublime camp on a tiny patch of rock-free tundra, sheltered from the wind beneath one almost breaking swell in sea of rock and lichen. We had enough water for dinner, but as none of the puddles were deeper than an inch I dug one out a bit thinking it would make things easier in the morning. That did not work.
I also re-relearned that context rules all. Miles that went easy Saturday or Sunday were slow, slow slow Monday after we emerged from our bushwack into mud and mosquito land with 7 miles of “uninteresting” trail between us and a roof and a grilled cheese sandwich. I know that it’s as simple as putting one foot in front of the other using a good heart and head, but dammit I was hungry and out of patience. It would not be enlightenment if you got there and stayed put.
The corners of Glacier remain infinite, but mental strands webbing them together grow ever tighter.