Now married and the mother of three, her days focused on her children and husband.
We decided to meet for lunch at a place halfway between our homes. There the plans for a weekend backpack outing came to life. We also wanted to include her oldest son, he’d enjoy a weekend of hiking and camping.
This being our first backpack of the season, we decided on the Pine Creek Rail Trail from White Tail to Bonnell Flats – an easy 4 ½ mile hike that takes about 2 ½ hours to walk with packs.
That Saturday dawned clear and sunny while we drove to the Pine Creek Valley. We shrugged on our packs, grabbed our walking sticks and headed up the trail.
Along the way, mountain streams rushed over rocks and fallen logs.
Springs dripped water over moss-covered rocks.
Bits of green here and there poked through the crunchy dried leaves covering the mountainside.
Spiky white flowers bloomed along the trail.
Reaching the campsite in the afternoon, we set up our tents along Pine Creek. We skipped stones across the creek, hiked a short trail up the mountainside, and enjoyed a campfire in the evening. As night crept into the valley we retired to our tents and snuggled into cozy sleeping bags.
Sunday morning we built a fire for warmth, drank hot chocolate and ate hot oatmeal. For some reason, everything tastes better when camping.
However, all good things must come to an end. By mid-morning we had packed up and began the hike to White Tail and our parked car.
Oh yes, the good life – spending time with friends while backpacking.