Monday, March 20, 2017

Yukon Episode Five: All Good Things Come to an End

Mary and I hitch from Fairbanks to Eagle, float a canoe to Circle, then hitch back to Fairbanks. 
This is the fifth and final episode. Read the first, second, third, and fourth episodes.
August 2013 - Yukon River
On the fifth day we woke to wander the grounds of Slaven Roadhouse until the mosquitoes made us tire of our explorations in bloodletting. Tidied up camp on the hill then packed the canoe by the river. I couldn't resist a dip in the cold, clear Coal Creek, flowing into the Yukon just upriver. I walked a short ways to a hole deep enough to disappear in - eureka! A fine chilling dip, dried by the sun, bliss. Afterwards, returned to the lady who disdained this cold creek and steered our craft back out into the constant flow.

Friday, September 23, 2016

AZT Day 17: No more AZT, these tires were made for riding

You know what they say about plans? The best of mice and men come to ruin. "They" being Robert Burns, and the saying being a modern paraphrase. Plans are to my mind the tiny assistants to dreams. The trick is to let them assist, but not to let them run those dreams, for they are wretched at spontaneity and tend to scream DESTINATIONS when one should be slowing their roll, stopping to sit for a while, to strum a banjo, to chat with a new and temporary friend, to watch the clouds roll over and spy ships a'sailing in a marshmallow sea populated with dragons.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

AZT Day 10: Out of the Canyon and Off-Trail

Made it up the, up the, up the … hold one moment please. Okay, finally made it up to the top of the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, but not before consuming a gallon of water, a liquid breakfast of oats and nonsense, one snickers bar; nor before sweating that gallon of water back out in a perspiratory bath of proportions epic enough to suit the surrounding landscape; nor even before fielding 4,647 comments and queries on the open umbrella sidled along my backpack keeping this wilting human structure more or less in the shade despite the sun's eagerly inspecting eye searching out where flesh might be found within this baking pan of earth creased into the ground here in the desert.


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

AZT Day 8: Grand Canyon, North Rim

In seven days he did toil over the land, and the length of his toil was lo some 80 odd miles. And on the eighth day he rested, and did not a cotton - pickin’ thing.

Monday, September 5, 2016

AZT -1: Gone Alaska, Welcome Wilderness

One day remains before I step out on the trail and test my mettle. It's still not quite reality, despite this airplane bound for Phoenix I'm now strapped within. All the requisite conditions have been fulfilled. Time to wander? Check. Gear and something to tote it in? Check. Nutrition and hydration provided for? Check. Navigation aids? Check. Desire and ability to wander? Check and time will tell.