That lesson learned again

Car camping still isn’t, but there we were in the old orchards when the turkey attack happened.

I still don’t like paying for camping, but that’s a big change from a decade ago, when I almost always went to absurd lengths to avoid it.  But that other Fruita, along the Fremont, has the most gorgeous groves of apple, almond, cherry and cottonwood trees I could ever imagine.  And lots and lots of open space for toddlers to run.

The first evening we walked LB around and around, hoping for a tired kid as soon after the 630 sunset as possible.  Members of the mule deer herd filtered through an hour before dusk, and turkey tracks were abundant in the mud between the reeds along the river.  There were no signs of the birds, as the upper branches of the taller trees became cloaked in darkness, and we went to bed.  The next morning I was carrying one frozen pissy diaper, and one warm shitty diaper, to the trash can in the restroom while trying to coax LB along in my wake when there they were again.  Three big gobblers, circulating through the campground, had sneaked up.  LB being about their height and weight, and at 18 months only dreaming he was half as fast, was naturally both intrigued and scared.  As he should have been.  So he observed turkeys off and on for the next hour, often while seated atop my shoulders, and we finally knew who had been crapping on the picnic table in the night.
That day we did a canyon hike, a popular one, one that would normally be considered rather easy.  And we almost got lost.  It was an even more egregious example of what I should have gotten out of my system back in December; rather than follow the known route up the actual wash to an old road we stuck to an ever more sparsely cairned short cut, got cliffed out, and after much hemming and futzing took the safe option and back tracked all the way back to the car.  Which was a necessity with the kid along.  Had we had a map along, especially an appropriately detailed one, what on the ground looked like a decent route option would have been a non-starter.

At least it was a nice canyon to walk through twice in four hours.
M and I have been hiking together for a long time now, since back in 2003 when she had never before slept in a tent.  In almost all things she is a bold and confident woman of a sort that even in the liberal arts college where we met was rare enough, to say nothing of society at large.  It’s what attracted me to her in the first place, and a big part of why being married has been so easy for so long.  In a few areas we do less well honoring each others expertise, and with me hearing alternate opinions about wilderness navigation is still today embarrassingly difficult.  I have a lot of work to do on that one, and the multiple “I told you so’s” M earned this weekend will hopefully help me be less stuck, next time.
r0021665-1Soon enough, LB will be leading the way.


8 responses to “That lesson learned again”

  1. Lost or not, appreciate you sharing the adventure.

  2. LB is killing it in that last picture. Guess those self paced trips are paying off.

    1. He’s made leaps and bounds with balance, running, skipping, etc. Just got he new BD kids full body harness in and he’s just tall enough for it to fit, so that’s a whole new world.


      1. Impressive! Jack is about the same age, but he’s so tiny that even the smallest real gear is still to big. Some good shoes would be super useful. Hopefully by summer…

        1. 18.5 months, close to 30 pounds, and easily fitting into 18 month clothes. He’s probably close to outgrowing his Adidas’, which is sad. Velcro high tops have been great because he can’t kick them off.

  3. That’s a great place. Picking peaches with the kids and lounging by the river in the summer is magic.

  4. No real living without getting lost or rim-rocked …

    (as long as there’s a happy ending)

    1. Not possible to overemphasize how awesome it is that the kid enjoys hiking as much as he does. I think we can justifiably give ourselves a big pat on the back for that.

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