Before yesterday I’d only ever gone hiking once. It was last summer, it took 45 minutes roundtrip, and it ended with a trip to my favorite pizza place, Flatbread. Even as a total hiking n00b, I knew it was an easy hike.
So, when my friends Josh and Ben invited me to go on an “easy” hike with them, I knew their definition of easy was probably different than mine. Brothers, they spent their childrenhoods hiking around New England with their family. I spent mine eating tacos and peeing in kitty litter boxes.
I’d had fun hiking the first time I went, though, and I wanted to try it again. I knew their “easy” hike could take as much as an hour and a half, and would probably end with no more than a Domino’s pizza, but I decided to tough it. I agreed to go.
With only 15 minutes to get ready, I ran around my house grabbing anything I could possibly need on a hike. I threw on 1) a 7-year-old Maine Envirothon shirt, 2) a 3-year-old pair of running sneakers, and 3) one-size-too-small ankle socks. Then, I took my ripped North Face backpack and stuffed it with 1) two bottles of water, 2) a banana, an orange, an apple, and a granola bar.
Josh was driving, so I took the first few minutes of the ride to eat everything except the orange and drink one of my waters. Then it was time to ask about the hike.
Me: How this hike is?
Josh: Super easy! It’s going to be so fun! You’ll love it!
Me: I am sure, I am a very good hiker. How long it is?
Josh: Oh it’s nothing. Nine miles, methinks.
Me: LOL. You fib.
And he did fib. It wasn’t nine miles, it was ten. Ten miles of walking up and down a mountain.
At first, it wasn’t that bad — I was keeping up just fine, internally congratulating myself on my level of fitness. Then the five-minute mark passed. The following sentence, which I said after seeing the second ascent, summarizes the day.
“EFF THESE EFFING HILLS. SORRY.” (Edited for politeness.)
Those effing hills effed me for the next five hours. Here’s me when I reached the top:
Hiking is not fun. Being on top of the mountain is alright I guess, cause you get to see pretty views, but the parts that come before and after seriously blow. It’s just really really hard work. And, since I didn’t have nearly enough food or water, by the end I felt like I had a strain of ankle-spraining flu. And, since my footwear sucked, my feet felt like this:
I saw neat birds, lots of moose poop, bear poop, and strange green poop, though. Obviously I’ll be going again, cause that stuff is too good to pass up.
Anyone know what these guys are, by the way? I’m thinking mountain chickens.
Yeah, mountain chickens sounds about right.
I was told they’re actually Spruce Grouses, “quite possibly the least intelligent bird in Maine.”
Crud, that looks intense. You are a seriously good writer. Hope you are planning on putting out an ebook.
Thanks, Jerret! You just made my damn day.
grouse…and your poor foot looks so sore!!