Sunday, July 4, 2010

Mile 836.6: Rest and Recuperate

It's 20 miles from Mather to Muir pass, and although that distance would have been no problem at all in the desert, at 10,000 feet with snow and non-equestrian grade steepness, such an idea was inconcievable. So instead we slept in, rushed madly down to treeline (again... we should be familiar with our speedy hiker metabolisms by now), and took our sweet time getting to within 3 miles of Muir Pass. We are camped right below treeline.

The views were pretty, the rivers most definitely flooded, but the two things that struck me most today were:
A. A tiny tree (sapling?) and moss growing out of a huge dead rotting tree in the middle of the river. Maybe the big tree will collect debris and that tiny tree will grow up to be a bit tree on a young island in the middle of the river. Maybe it will get washed away. Nothing is permanent, nothing guaranteed. But that tiny little tree has no choice but to grow it's little hear out and see what happens.

B. A small red bug flying lazily between the huge trunks of the big trees growing in the valley floor. We were in the same spot at the same time, but our worlds and perspectives are vastly different.

I don't know, maybe I'm going kooky.

Tao of the day (8.3)
"Compete with no one, and no one can compete with you."

I can kind of see the wisdom in that. Drugstore is fueled by his competitive spirit, and he's flying through the Sierra as fast as he can. I'm going a whole lot slower than he is, but I'm stopping to admire the views, smell the flowers, and wax philosophically about tiny trees on big trees and tiny bugs. Our experiences are different, and I sure am enjoying mine when I have the energy to. Then again, if I didn't feel competitive, where would I be. I ski better, run faster, hike farther, and bake fancier because of competitiveness. I'm happy about all those self improvements. I'll keep competing if it gets me to do what I want to do.

- Typoed on my iPhone

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